Work Your Hamstrings and Your Back at Once With ‘Good Mornings’

Photo: Getty Images/skynesher
Waking up to a workout is always a good idea. While there are plenty of different exercises to choose from to help you get in a solid sweat sesh before running off to work, there's one in particular that reigns supreme when it comes to setting you up for the day ahead.

If you haven't heard of "good mornings," I'm pretty sure they're about to become your new favorite thing. The exercise can be done banded or with a bar, but both bring on the same benefits: a stronger lower back and toned hamstrings. And if you're going to be sitting all day—the worst thing for your lower back—doing a few reps will keep your body feeling its best, even when you're stuck at your desk for hours.

How to do "good mornings":

  1. Stand on a looped band with your feet hip-width apart and toes pointed straight ahead.
  2. Squat down, put the band around your neck so it's sitting on your traps, and stand straight back up.
  3. Keeping your shoulders pulled back, core tight, and knees slightly bent, slowly push your hips back as you bend forward into a nearly 90-degree angle. Once you reach the top, squeeze your butt. Perform 3 sets of 8 to 12 reps.

Before working out, start with this warm-up that will take you straight back to elementary school recess. Then if you want a quickie sweat session, go for this 9-minute Pilates workout that targets every muscle in your core.

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