Make walking fun again! Alright, we are all following social distancing and the greater St. Louis area has the prolonged winter time blues. No gyms! This is a challenge, but it is an opportunity with better weather around the corner to work on improving ourselves. This could be a great way for the family to get into a routine together. Also, check out some local state parks that have been on your to do list for the past 5 years.
Why to ruck?
Cardiovascular exercise is all about getting your heart rate up. That’s it. The extra resistance (the rucking weights in your bag) forces your legs, back, core, and shoulders to work the entire time you ruck. This gets your heart rate up high enough to get a good cardio workout, without destroying your knees by running. The weight also creates a solid strength workout, loading your structure, and building strength and durability not only in your legs, but in the muscles that keep your spine erect, your abs, your upper and lower back, and your shoulders as well. The effects are compounded if you get a bodyweight workout or a CrossFit style workout mid-ruck. Rucking will burn 3 times as many calories as walking.
How to pack a ruck bag?
First, let’s take that book bag that isn’t getting any use from our kids right now. When we are packing the book bag, make sure the weight sits up a little higher in the bag. We can achieve this by folding up towels and placing them in the bottom of the bag. With towels we can wrap weights or plates to cushion on our back. I feel individual sand bangs work best. If we have straps use the upper strap, keep the bottom strap open. We use stability with the bottom strap open.
Getting creative while rucking.
Some great exercises to include are:
1-Pushups (weighted or unweighted)
2-Burpees (without the jump)
3-Backpack swings – kettle bell swings with the backpack
4-Backpack rows – grab the pack by a strap, and perform a row motion
5-Single arm sots press (by holding the end of the strap)
6-Overhead presses (with the backpack)
Try it before you Ruck it!
By: Wes Steele