Weekend Challenge: Full Body Strengthener - Save Our Bones

I love this weekend’s exercise – it’s a simple yet challenging move that strengthens your whole body and leaves you feeling energized.

The Full Body Strengthener is a stand-up exercise that you can “take with you” to the office, home, or wherever you may find yourself.

And as an added bonus, I'll share with you easy ways to offset the bone-damaging free radicals produced during exercise.

Let’s get started with today’s move, that works the abs, arms, shoulders, legs, lower back, and hips. That’s why it’s called the Full Body Strengthener!


Let’s look at the muscles involved in today’s exercise.

  • The Quadriceps, or quads, are made up of four muscles that run along the front of your thigh. They are the main muscle group associated with squats, although as you’ll see, many other muscles are involved in today’s exercise as well.

    The quads help with knee joint stabilization and pelvic alignment. Strong quads help build bone in the femur and femoral head, areas you’ll want to strengthen to prevent fractures.

  • The glutes (buttocks muscles) are also associated with squats, and for good reason. These large, heavy muscles, especially when worked evenly as in today’s move, promote alignment and strength of the hips. They are also essential for a strong gait and steady balance. Your lower back muscles are also connected with your glutes, which is one of the ways these squats strengthen the low back.
  • The erector spinae muscles are deep inside your body, close to your bones, and run all the way from your neck to your pelvis. They consist of three strips of muscle that attach directly to your vertebrae as they run from the base of your skull to your hip bones. Even though they don’t show superficially, the erector spinae are essential for vertebrae alignment and density.
  • Your abs are also worked by the Full Body Strengthener. Specifically, the motions develop the rectus abdominus, the superficial tummy muscles that you can easily see and feel. You need strong abs to maintain balance and proper posture, and to engage in deep breathing.
  • Your obliques are the muscles of your sides, and like the abs and erector spinae, are considered core muscles. When you turn or twist your torso, you’re using your obliques. They work with the erector spinae to stabilize the spine, and working the obliques strengthens the ribcage.
  • The deltoid muscles get a workout with this exercise, too. These are your shoulder muscles, and are responsible for most shoulder rotation. Therefore, they are important muscles for proper posture and preventing dislocation of the shoulder joint in case of a fall or lifting a heavy object. In addition, working the deltoids strengthens the shaft of the humerus bone, to which they are anchored.
  • The triceps are the muscles along the backs of your arms, and today’s exercise is just the thing to firm them up. You use your triceps when you straighten your elbow. Interestingly, the triceps muscles originate at the outer part of the scapula (shoulder blade), and from there it meets the other two triceps heads at the anterior part of the humerus. They all attach at the elbow joint, so working toward strong triceps means you’ll stabilize your elbows as well.
  • Finally, the trapezius muscle covers the top of your shoulders and fans out across your upper back. The traps are especially important in preventing rounded shoulders, forward head posture (FHP), and Dowager’s Hump. They align and strengthen the thoracic vertebrae, and help support your head and extend your neck.

As you can see, the Full Body Strengthener covers a lot of ground! So let’s get started with how to do it.


Grab a dumbbell or can of food to begin. Choose whatever weight is most comfortable for you, as long as you can put both hands on the ends.

  1. Stand with your feet hip-width apart.
  2. Take the weight in both hands, holding it by cupping your hands over the ends.
  3. Hold the weight in front of your chin.
  4. Keeping your back straight, bend your knees into a full squat and come back up.
  5. As you come back up again, bring the weight up over your head and straighten your arms. You’ll be standing straight up with your arms over your head.
  6. Bring the weight back to the front of your chin and repeat the squat-and-stand motion approximately 10 times. Make sure you don’t go past your comfort level; doing fewer than 10 is fine at first. You also might prefer to do more than 10 depending on your fitness level.

Along with nourishing your bones with vital nutrients, exercise is one of the most important things you can do to rebuild and rejuvenate your bones. In addition, regular exercise reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease, cancer, and diabetes. In fact, research shows that exercising actually lengthens your lifespan.

Ironically, though, exercise produces free radicals that can cause oxidative damage – especially with prolonged, intense exercise.

How Exercise Produces Free Radicals

Skeletal and heart muscle are the best known source of free radical production during exercise. A recent study suggests that the cells’ mitochondria consume a great deal of oxygen during cellular respiration, and with the generation of superoxide, the oxygen might lose an electron, thus making it a free oxygen species (free radical).1

The sarcoplasmic reticulum (SR) of the heart and skeletal muscle also come into play. SRs are organelles that consists of sacs or tubes surrounded by membranes. The SR’s job is to control the balance of calcium storage, release, and reuptake. Certain enzymes are produced during this biological balancing act, and these enzymes generate superoxide, which influences calcium release through oxidation of a calcium receptor.1

That’s just the tip of a very complex iceberg; but simply put, cellular respiration during exercise produces free radicals through a variety of biological processes.

And of course, free radicals and oxidative damage hurt bones. So it makes sense to make choices to compromise for this effect.

How To Offset The Exercise Paradox

It’s clear that exercise is healthy; but it’s also clear that free radicals are generated during a workout. So it’s important to offset this “side effect” to protect your bones and your body by eating and drinking plenty of antioxidant-rich foods and beverages.

This is where the concept of “pre- and post-Densercise foods” comes from, and it’s why the Densercise™ Epidensity Training System includes a detailed yet easy-to-follow Eating Guide.

The Eating guide explains which antioxidants are not produced by the body, and must therefore be ingested, such as Vitamins C and E, and beta carotene – to mention a few. The Eating Guide goes on to describe which foods contain these antioxidants and when to eat them.

Before working out, for instance, it’s important to eat foods that have a low Glycemic Load, such as sweet potato, pumpkin seeds, oranges, and cantaloupe to prevent excessive fatigue brought on by insulin spikes. Low GL foods also tend not to interfere with your body’s own antioxidant production.

In the Eating Guide, you’ll also learn that several plant phytonutrients, including beta carotene, require dietary fat for increased bioavailability. That’s why I recommend that foods containing beta carotene and other fat-soluble antioxidants be dipped in olive oil, or consumed with some fat.

This delicious dip is perfect to eat with pre-Densercise™ fruits.

Free Radical Terminator Dip

100% Alkalizing


  • 6 ounces plain, unflavored yogurt (at least 2% fat)
  • 1 tablespoon almond butter
  • 1/2 tablespoon honey (adjust to taste)
  • 1/8 teaspoon cinnamon 
  • a few drops of vanilla extract (optional)


  1. Mix all ingredients in a bow or in a blender, and serve with fruits.

Densercise Protects Against Free Radical Damage In Multiple Ways

Densercise™ is an effective workout and bone-builder, but it is not overly intense, so it protects against excessive free radical production brought on by prolonged exercise. And as mentioned earlier, the Eating Guide gives your clear directions about how to minimize free radical damage nutritionally, both in a protective sense (before Densercising) and in a restorative sense (after Densercising).

Take Exercising For Your Bones to the Next Level!

Learn the 52 exercise moves that jumpstart bone-building – all backed by the latest in epigenetics research.

Learn More Now →

With the comprehensive Densercise™ Epidensity Training System, you know you’re getting the “total package.”

Keep exercising and enjoy the weekend!


1 Powers, Scott K. and Jackson, Malcolm J. “Exercise-Induced Oxidative Stress: Cellular Mechanisms and Impact on Muscle Force Production.” Physiol Rev. October 2008. 88(4): 1243-1276. Doi: 10.1152/physrev.00031.2007. Web. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2909187/

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Comments on this article are closed.

  1. Jenny (Muriel) Bretana

    I have not received you newsletter lately. Do i have to sign up again

    • Customer Support

      Hi Jenny,

      We’re glad you like receiving Vivian’s free e-mails and updates! To sign up for Vivian’s emails again, please click on this link:


      then simply click on the blue button that says ‘Click Here – It’s Free.’ and enter your name and email.

  2. Nancy Hughes

    Hi Vivian
    I have sent you an e-mail today and hope you get it.
    My recent scan 2015 is:
    Spine -2.6
    lower b -1.5
    hip -1.5
    In comparison with 2012 scan which was
    hip -1.3
    Hopefully you can see this as an improvement and would advise me to carry on with diet and exercise instead of reverting back to taking the biophosphonate
    I feel this is an improvement and my doc did admit that but was advising me to take the medication nevertheless as my spine could crumble years ahead.
    please help

    Please help

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA

      Hang in there, Nancy, and keep up the great work. Don’t let the Medical Establishment skew your beliefs!

  3. Taube Shubina

    Dear Vivian,
    My name is Taube Shubina, I am 81 year old .
    September 18 , 2015.
    My last DEXA results of 06-19 -2015 shows ;
    in region L1-L4 T-Score – 2.5
    in region neck left – 2.6
    in region neck right – 2.4
    in region total left – 2.8
    in region total right – 2.5

    I like very much your advices and commentaries on Osteporosis , it is very helpful
    and I practice your exercises suggestions .
    I had never have taken any prescription drugs for osteoporosis or osteoarthritis.
    I am breast cancer survivor , three years ago in July had surgery, after it I need take
    prescription drug ANASTROZOLE , I was taken for 18 months , but because I started feel some pain in my hip and DEXA test showed the results worse then
    prior 2 years , I have had discontinue to use it .

    My bloood pressure is about 150 over 75 , sometime lower or even higher , I can
    not take any medicine for blood pressure because it gives me a rash and an itchy
    feeling over my entire body . I am taking a lot of supplements for my medical condition .
    Five years (2009 – 2014) I was taken from ALGAECAL calcium supplement , then
    from middle of 2014 I am using from “Nature City” supplement True osteo and from
    “Swanson vitamins” supplement Koact (Patented Calcium Collagen chelate) – two
    capsules of each daily.
    My question is about a new supplement TRUBONE COMPLETE from Nutri-Health
    Supplements company. Their website is: http://www.nutrihealth.com. The company itself
    claims , that it is the final piece of a complete bone regimen .

    The ingredients in one capsule are :
    1) Oste0 Sine – proprietary Herbal Blend – 170 mg , that includes :
    Astragulus membranaceus (root) , Cuscutachinensis (sesd) , Eucommia ulmoides
    (bark) , Rehmannia glutinosa (root) .
    2) HiActives wild blueberry (fruit) – 150 mg
    3) MBP (milk protein) – 40 mg
    4) Bamboo silica (stem) – 6 mg
    Other ingredients : Vegetarian capsule (cellulose), calcium silicate .
    Contains dairy.
    Suggested Use : Adults take 1 capsule daily .

    I am looking forward to your advice and opinion about this new supplement .

    More detailed description is on their website .

    Truly yours, Taube Shubina

  4. Chris

    Dear Vivian, I just started receiving your excellent information but I am one of those on Coumadin- which means I carefull watch and keep my VIT K low for my twice weekly INR testing.
    No Kale Spinach Cranberries, grapefruit etc and really watch and balance my other greens. Formerly a vegetarian I now eat red meat per my physicians. Your recipes, as wonderful as they look ,usually have one or more ingredients that are a no -no for me .. Any suggestions?…and how do I print out parts of your daily newsletter- ie- past weekend bone strength exercise?
    Many thanks chris

    • Cheryl

      Hi Chris – can you tell me why you need to keep your vit K low and your greens minimal?

  5. Charlotte

    Thanks Vivian for all your info.
    Have you ever heard of anyone getting cartilage back in their knees?
    I have been advised to have both my knees replaced but am Leary about doing so. I am getting acupuncture and going to the liquid gem hoping to get some pain relief.
    Any info. would be most appreciated.

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA

      Hi Charlotte,
      Cartilage is living tissue that can renew and remodel, not unlike bone. 🙂

  6. shula

    Appreciate the simplicity of this exercise

  7. Helen

    I made a mistake and let my doctor give me two Prolia shots this year. Recently I developed a right thigh fracture and pain in the hip-thigh joint. The doctors say I may need a hip replacement, but I don’t buy it. I also have deterioration of the right side of my spine from radiation treatments in 2006 after a right breast lumpectomy. Wish I knew natural ways to cure all this. Any advice? I love reading all your material that offers a lot of helpful suggestions.

  8. bea

    hi vivian i love all your exercises i cant wait to try this recipe i sure would more of your e-mailes i use to get alot of them but you seem to have forgot me the only one i get now it the exerciseones please dont forget me i have been on your program for along time i have all your books also your exercise program bea

    • Customer Support

      I am sorry you’re not receiving all of Vivian’s e-mails and updates, Bea! They might be in your spam folder, or “filed away” by your e-mail program. You could search your e-mail for “Vivian Goldschmidt” and see if any of the missing updates come up. 🙂

  9. SelvaBeatriz

    Hi Vivian,
    Thank you so much for all the valuable indications of the save ours bones , i have learned a lot .

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA

      That’s great, Selva – learning and gathering knowledge is where bone-saving starts. 🙂

  10. David

    thank you for all the good work.

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA

      You’re welcome, David!

  11. Renee Gregory

    Great information as usual. Thank you so much for all the valuable things I have learned from you to keep building and strengthening my bones without medication.

    Much appreciated!

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA

      You are most welcome, Renee!

  12. Jean

    can I get the 52 exercises in hard copy instead of e-book? If I can I would get it.

    • Customer Support

      Hi Jean,
      At this time, the Densercise Epidensity Training System is delivered digitally, and there is no hard copy manual.

  13. Charlotte

    I also wonder about taking calcitonin. It helps the back pain and spasms so they say. Your opinion?

  14. Charlotte

    I also have fractures in my vertebrate and very concerned about doing or not doing certain movements. Doctors don’t tell you.

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA

      Hi Charlotte,

      A physical therapist or chiropractor might be more forthcoming with you. He or she could assess your situation, review your health history, and discuss what motions are appropriate or not with vertebral fractures.

  15. VAlarie

    Can u recommend the best calcium , magnesium, D3 to take for bone health. It gets so confusing but I think these are the 3 I should be taking. I am. 60 yrs old. What about my husband for his bones? He us 57
    Thank you

  16. Marie

    I can’t go into a squat without my hands helping to break the downward pull. I also can’t get up again without a little push with my hands. Will it still be a helpful exercise if I go down only half-way?

    thanks Vivian!


    • hoosiermom

      I also cannot do squats, mostly because squats cause me to develop tendinitis in one of my hips that I had a botched hip replacement surgery in. Here, however, is a modification of this exercise that I am able to do. If you have a smooth wall(or door), put your back against the wall and walk your feet away from the wall. Your goal is to have your feet far enough away from the wall that when you slide your back down the wall into a squat position, your knees will be directly above your toes. My walls have flat paint on them, so aren’t very slick, so I put on a silky shirt and that helped. If you still can’t go all the way down into a full squat, I am sure that you are still getting benefit from going down part way. Over time, doing this exercise against a wall, your quads will gradually strengthen and you may be able to work further and further down until you are eventually able to do a full squat with your back against the wall. Good luck and don’t overdo it at first!!

      • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA

        Thank you for the tips, Hoosiermom!

  17. Janet

    The only problem I have with these exercises, is that there is no warning for someone who already has compressed fractures. Are they still safe to do please?

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA

      Hi Janet,
      Thanks for chiming in. 🙂 The Weekend Challenges are exercise information intended for the general public, so when it comes to questions as to whether or not a particular exercise is right for any one individual, it’s prudent to check with your healthcare practitioner. This is especially important where fractures are concerned.

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