How to Do a Mini Workout at the Minnesota State Fair

Got a few calories to burn off? (The Minnesota State Fair runs from Aug. 22-Labor Day, Sept. 2)

Got a few calories to burn off?
(The Minnesota State Fair runs from Aug. 22-Labor Day, Sept. 2)

Want to burn a few extra calories as you graze through the food delights at the Minnesota State Fair?  If you saw Tuesday’s list of calorie costs for popular state fair foods, you know that it would take a significant amount of time and effort to burn off all of the calories that you might consume. But you can put a dent in the damage with a few simple exercises.  Give this total body mini workout a try.

Total Body State Fair Mini Workout.

Start your day by walking or biking to the State Fairgrounds.  It’s healthy and economical.  You can lock your bike for free at one of the free bike corrals.  Then do these exercises to strengthen the muscles in your upper body, lower body and core.

  • Park bench push-up.  Strengthen your upper body and tighten your core muscles with an incline push up performed on the back of a park bench.  Stand behind the bench and place your hands on the bench about shoulder height apart.  Your feet will be behind your upper body and you’ll lean towards the bench to begin. Bend your elbows to lower your torso closer to the bench, then straighten your arms to return to the starting position.  Do ten repetitions.
  • Waiting-around wall squat.  If you find yourself waiting for the kids to get off a ride or for your husband to come back from the food line, find an empty space on a sturdy wall to do this squat variation. Stand with your back to the wall and lean against it. Now walk your feet out slightly and lower you’re hips so that they are in line with your knees.  Hold the position for 15-60 seconds to strengthen the muscles in your lower body.  It’s harder than it looks!
  • Stand-in-line stability exercises. One of the best ways to strengthen the muscles in your torso is to do balance exercises.  When your body has to stabilize to stay upright, you have to tighten the core muscles to balance.  Try this standing core exercise when you’re waiting in line for your snack or ride. Balance on one leg and lift the other foot slightly off the ground in front of you.  Circle the foot around to the back and return to the starting position.  Do 10 circles then switch to the other leg.  Keep your torso tight but don’t hold your breath as you complete each repetition.

If you didn’t bike to the fair, you can still improve your health by parking further away and walking back to your car at the end of the day. A small study conducted recently in Japan suggests that going for a walk after consuming a high-fat meal may help to lower your post-meal triglyceride levels.  The study was limited in scope, so you shouldn’t use it to justify eating more cheese curds, but a brisk walk to the car along with a few five-minute exercise breaks during the day will help you to balance the energy scales and keep your body healthy.

Have you checked out the North Memorial Healthy Weight Loss website?  It’s a great source of easy tips for healthy eating, exercise and diet support.  You can also connect with us on Facebook and Twitter.

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