With a job, social life, and family obligations, finding time to go to the gym can be tough. But that doesn’t give you an excuse to not workout regularly.
The reality is, you don’t need a ton of equipment to get a great workout. Using just your bodyweight, you can build strength, burn fat, and get in incredible shape. You also don’t need a ton of time. If you focus on interval training, you can increase your heart rate and metabolism, and induce the afterburn effect. That means you’ll burn more fat and calories all day long.
This circuit is comprised of bodyweight and plyometric exercises. Plyometrics are incredible for building power and burning fat. And if you practice them regularly, they can even help you run faster and jump higher.1
Because these moves are so dynamic, it’s critical that you perform them with good technique, especially as you start to fatigue.
Complete 4 rounds of the circuit, resting for 30-seconds or less between exercises. Take 60-seconds of rest between each full circuit. Keep up the pace, while paying attention to your form and technique. Form is always more important than speed.
Start the workout with a thorough warm-up, and finish with some foam rolling or static stretches.
To make this workout more challenging you can wear a weighted vest, or increase the duration of each exercise.
|Side Plank with Rotation||30 seconds, each side|
|Push Up Plank||30 seconds|
|Pendulum Lunges||30 seconds, each leg|
|Skater Hops||30 seconds|
Rest: 60 seconds
Instructions: Ideally using a yoga mat, prop yourself up on your right forearm and stack your feet. Lift your hips off of the ground and squeeze your glutes, so your body creates a straight line from your head to your heels. While keeping your hips strongly lifted, raise your left arm towards the ceiling and then reach it underneath you so your torso rotates slightly towards the ground. Return to the start position with your right hand reaching straight up, and repeat.
Instructions: Start in a forearm plank, with your body creating a straight line from head to heels. Your feet should be about hips-width apart, or completely together for more of a challenge. Keep your head neutral, shoulders packed, core tight, and legs engaged. Then press one hand into the ground, following by the other, to push up to a high plank position with arms extended. One arm at a time, lower your body back down into the forearm plank position. To make this exercise more difficult, try to keep your hips and shoulders completely level the entire time.
Instructions: In this lunge variation, you’re combining the reverse and forward lunge together into one exercise. It’s a move that challenges your strength, endurance, power, and balance. Stand tall with your feet together. Then step your right foot back into a reverse lunge, bending your right knee so it hovers just above the ground and so your legs create two 90° angles. Step up onto your left foot and balance for a second before bringing the right foot forward into a forward lunge. Keep lunging the right foot backwards and forwards, staying tall through your spine the entire time.
Instructions: Hinge your body into an athletic position with your chest tall, hips reaching back, and knees slightly bent. Cross your right foot behind your left, then drive powerfully off your left foot to jump sideways and land on your right foot, allowing your left leg to naturally cross behind the right. You can either tap your left foot to the ground, or hover it above the ground to add a balance component. Jump back to the left, finding a fluid rhythm hopping right to left.
Instructions: Stand tall, then bend your knees to bring your hands to the floor. Jump your feet back into a plank position as you bend your elbows into a push up. Press out of the push up, and jump your feet forward to meet your hands. Then powerfully jump up into the air. Land softly with bent knees, bringing your hands back to the ground, and repeating the entire movement. Hands down, jump back, push up, jump forward, jump up.
Plyometric exercises are intense, challenging, and can be uncomfortable if you have bad joints, which means they aren’t appropriate for everyone. If these exercises don’t work for you, you can absolutely substitute more accessible exercises. For example, perform side lunges instead of skater hops, and no-jump burpees instead of a standard burpee. With a few simple changes, this workout can be modified in a way that works best for you.
To make this workout more difficult, you can wear a weighted vest or add dumbbells. If you try this bodyweight circuit, let me know how it goes! And if you have any questions, feel free to reach out in the comments section below.