We're going to start with the easiest exercise on the planet: the gluteal squeeze. Here's what you do:
- Contract your butt muscles.
See where we're going with this?
Your glutei (there are three of them in each buttock, with the gluteus maximus winning the award for "biggest") serve more of a purpose than filling out the back of your jeans -- they're responsible for helping you sit down and stand up, among other crucial movements. Strengthening them does a body good. Plus, it's fun. You can alternate from cheek to cheek on your conference call, and no one will ever know.
But this squeezing technique doesn't need to start and end at your backside. What do we do when we get stressed (besides swear, get cranky at the wrong people, and eat anything whose label screams sugar)? We tense up, often without knowing it. Because it's an unconscious reaction, you have to consciously remind yourself to relax.
One strategy is to go from toe to head, contracting each and every muscle along the way. Scrunch up your toes as tight as you can for a few seconds, and then let go. Move up to your calves, and then your thighs -- all the way up your body, including your face.