Health & Fitness

Post-Raya workout: 4 easy steps to help you get back into shape

If, on your way to work today, you felt guilty for binge-eating during open houses and feel like you’ve gained a few extra kilos that you can do without and need to get back in shape, we totally feel you.

Our in-house fitness guru, Dee Dee, has put together a list of simple workouts you can do during your gym time after work, or even at home, to help you get back into the pre-Raya you. So let’s get started!

But first…..warm up!

Be sure you stretch yourself first. Stretching helps to reduce delayed onset of muscle soreness while keeping you flexible and supple. It also helps you to perform exercises with full range of motion, decreasing the risk of injuries.

Workout No 1 : Woodchop

What does it target: Lower back and core muscles, including the rectus abdominis and gluteal muscles.

This is a full body exercise. You can just use your bodyweight or resistance such as dumbells or medicine ball of 2-3 kg weightage.

How to do it: Stand on the ground with your legs spread apart and your feet flat. Bend your knees only slightly. Grasp the dumbbells in each hand.


  • Squat, and twist left on the outside of your left leg.
  • Exhale, and lift the weight diagonally across your body, ending twisted to the right with the dumbbell above your head. Pivot on your left foot.
  • Focus on the rotation initiation in your torso.
  • Control the weight back up to the starting position to complete one repetition.

Perform the woodchop exercise for 2 minutes, followed by active rest of 2 minutes. Active rest means you have to do some stretches, not sit and wait for 2 minutes!

Workout No 2 : Kettlebell Swing on a Squat

What does it target: Deltoids (shoulders), lattisimus dorsi (back muscles), gluteus maximus (buttocks), quadriceps (legs)

How to do it: Squat, hip distance apart, make sure your knees are not falling in front of your toes.

Put your body weight on your heels. Grab the handle with both hands, keeping the palms face down and arms in front of the body.

Then, in a fluid motion, explosively swing the kettlebell shoulder level, keeping the glutes and core engaged. Remember, the motion should come from the hips, not the arms, as the body returns to standing.

Lower the weight back down between the legs and keep this swinging motion going for 2 minutes.

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Perform the kettlebell swing on squat for 2 minutes, followed by rest of 2 minutes. Do some stretches before the next set.
Okay so far? Let’s move on to the next one…
Workout No 3: Jump Training 
This is an explosive exercise in which muscles exert maximum force in short intervals of time, with the goal of increasing power.
What does it target: Quadriceps and hamstrings
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How to do it: Perform the one-legged vertical jump on 3 sets of 8 repetitions, 4 sets of 12 repetitions, and 5 sets of 15 repetitions.
Do the jump on both your left and right legs. Incorporate 1 minute rest in between the sets. After 2 weeks of training of thrice per week, shorten the rest period to 30 seconds each time.

To jump higher, it is important to awaken and strengthen assisting muscles of the calves, the muscles around your hips, and your glutes.

This super-easy exercise works great as a tool for weight management and burning calories, as it increases your metabolic rate!

Workout No 4: Groin Stretch 

What does it target: Muscles inside of the thigh, groin

Perform the groin stretch during the 1 minute rest of the exercise above.

groin stretch

Combining the one-legged vertical jump and the groin stretch results in power and explosive strength, which gives you a full body workout exercise combo.

You will see increases in both speed of movement and speed of contraction (which affects explosive strength) which will improve performance. This is beneficial for all fitness levels. Good luck!

Dee Dee Mahmood is an exercise physiologist, nutritionist, and an academic adjunct for Edith Cowan University. Her research was presented at the American College of Sports Medicine Northwest Chapter Annual Meeting in April 2016. 

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