Ah, Monday. Time to get myself back on track after a weekend of slacking, and hard-core circuit-training always does the job. It provides me with the swift kick in the pants that I need to start my week off right. These workouts break up my usual running/gym routine and are extremely efficient–working multiple muscle groups, strengthening and burning fat simultaneously.
Here are some of my favorite moves. See how many reps you can do in 20-30 seconds. Do as a circuit, if you like. Go through all moves once, rest for two minutes, then repeat. Most of these are typically regarded as more advanced and may not be appropriate for those new to exercise.
Push & Reach
Start in pushup position, feet at hip width, and perform pushup. At the top of your subsequent pushup, simultaneously extend right arm so that it’s parallel to the floor and raise left leg about eight inches, also parallel to the floor. Hold this position and count to three. Return to the top of the plank position and switch arms and legs with the next rep.
*When arm and leg are extended at the top of the movement, keep back flat and hips parallel to the floor.
From a standing position, squat down so that your arms are outside your legs and your hands are on the floor. From this position, shoot your legs back, landing in the plank position. Perform a pushup. Reverse the motion and jump your feet back to the starting squat position. Stand and continue the upward motion by bending your knees and jumping, lifting your knees to your chest. Land as softly as possible. That’s one rep. Continue the exercise by squatting down and beginning the next burpee.
Russian Twist With Weight
Sit on the floor with your knees bent, holding a medicine ball or one dumbell by the end. Lean back so your torso is at a 45-degree angle to the floor, lower leg parallel to the floor and feet in the air. Brace your core and rotate to the right as far as you can. Pause, then reverse your movement and twist all the way back to the left as far as you can.
Single-Legged Mountain Climber
Start in a straight-arm plank and pull your left knee in toward your chest, keeping the right leg extended. Keeping the right knee tucked in, jump your left leg forward then jump it back to full plank position. Do an equal number of reps on both sides.
Reverse Plank Leg Lift
Begin in a plank position with the hands wider than shoulders and the body in a straight line from head to heels. Jump the feet wide at the same time you bend the elbows into a pushup, going as low as you can. In a smooth movement, spring back up, jumping your feet back together into your plank.
Side Plank Lift
Lie on side, hips stacked, one foot on top of other. Press into forearm and raise right hip and thigh off ground. Lower hip without touching mat, then lift again.