2 Workouts to Keep You Motivated for the Holidays! {Core & Cardio/Strength Circuit}

in #fitness3 years ago (edited)

Hey everyone! I try to share what I am up to with my running regularly, but it has been probably since the Plank Challenge that I have shared some workout ideas. I know everyone can use a little motivation, especially this time of year. The core workout I just did with one of my corporate classes yesterday, and they really "enjoyed" it. They like a good challenge since most of them come regularly. The other is a play on a circuit I think I have shared before, but I like going back to it every now and again to get a quick workout with a mix of cardio and strength.

I'll share the circuit first since the exercises you probably recognize and the format is fairly easy to follow. As always, make sure to modify where needed, though I will include an option for each exercise to scale down as needed. Feel free to do whatever form of cardio you enjoy or have access to in order to complete the workout. This is a descending ladder workout, so each round your time on the cardio or repetitions on the strength exercises will go down.

Circuit:

  • Cardio (I ran on the treadmill but you could row, bike, jump rope, etc.)
  • Pullups (use assistance, or sub inverted rows or bent over rows with weight)
  • Pushups (do them elevated for a modification or do a chest press)
  • Pistol Squat (I used the TRX for assistance, you can also just do regular squats)
  • Deadlift to a Biceps Curl (Use dumbbells or a bar and hinge from the hips for a deadlift then as you come up to standing perform a biceps curl)

Scheme:

10 Rounds--Start with 100 seconds of cardio followed by 10 reps of each of the exercises. The next round drop to 90 seconds of cardio and 9 reps of the exercises. Continue going down by 10 seconds or 1 repetition until you get down to 10 seconds and 1 rep on everything. Increase the intensity as you drop down to get the most out of the workout! It took me right at about 30 minutes to do this, plus about a 10 minute warmup and cooldown to bookend the workout.

It may not seem like a crazy workout, but it covers a lot of the basic bases if you are short on time and still want to get a total body session in. I like doing this one to work on my sprinting with tired legs. I'll change up the exercises or do the rower or bike for some variety on occasion.

Do the circuit on its own, then the core workout another time. Or feel free to combine the two for a longer workout if you like! Here's what we did in my core class (and yes I do consider squats and bridges core work because if you are doing them correctly your core will definitely be kicking in!):

Core:

  • Squats/Isometric Squats
  • Inchworms(with or without the pushup)/High Plank
  • 1 Leg Hip Bridge/Hold--Left Leg
  • 1 Leg Hip Bridge/Hold--Right Leg
  • Hands to Feet/Hold
  • Flutter Kicks/6 Inches
  • Mountain Climbers/Low Plank
  • Bicycles/Hold (Do the hold to the opposite side for each interval)

Scheme:

This may be a little tougher to explain, but I'm going to do my best. Each line is a pair of exercises--one with a movement, the second a hold or isometric version. Since my class is pretty advanced they like a good challenge and thus I cut out some of the rest to up the intensity on them. This scheme we are basically working through the rest interval by doing a hold as opposed to totally resting. The only rest is at the halfway point, otherwise you are just flowing right from one to the next. Once again, modify as needed by adding more rest or cutting out some of the intervals. For each pair you are going to complete the full round before moving on to the next set.

Set a timer for 7 rounds of 20 seconds work with a 10 second rest period. This is basically a tabata-type scheme, but I changed up the work/rest a bit. Within the set you'll do each of the exercises (the movement and hold) 6 times each, with a 20 second rest halfway. So here's how the first one would look:

20 seconds squats
10 seconds squat hold
20 seconds squats
10 seconds hold
20 seconds squats
10 seconds hold
20 seconds rest
10 seconds hold
20 seconds squats
10 seconds hold
20 seconds squats
10 seconds hold
20 seconds squats

The order switches after the halfway point to make it easier with a timer instead of having to restart with the 20 seconds. It actually flowed really well in a class format. After doing the first pair, move on and do the same thing with each of the other exercises. Since it is a corporate class and we are limited on time we just did each pair once, but you could always add a second round or add a second rest and three more times on each move within the set for a bigger challenge. If you have any questions, just ask and I'll try to explain better.

If you need a little extra motivation, I fell on my first set of box jumps in my workout on Wednesday and still finished the workout once the nausea passed. 🤣 I probably did my first box jump 20+ years ago when I started playing basketball in school and have never taken a bad spill before. I've seen plenty of banged up shins, so I have always had a healthy respect for the advanced exercise. I suppose it was time to pay the piper as I totally bashed my shin up right below the knee. Good thing it's not shorts weather here! (Don't worry, it hurt like a mother, but shouldn't leave any lasting damage except maybe a small dent in my tibia, haha!)

IMG_20181213_140105910.jpg

It just serves as a reminder to be smart while you are working out, though if you do anything long enough you may suffer a few bumps and bruises along the way. Just like life in general, you may get tripped up every now and again but most of the time all it takes is a little soap and a bandaid to get you back out there! Though to be fair I may be a little hesitant of box jumps for a week or so. 😉

Have a fit and healthy weekend!

If you are not already exercising regularly or have any contraindications, make sure to seek medical clearance before engaging in a new fitness routine.

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I hope it's healed by now! Great workout Katie!

My niece wanted to see my boo boo today, so I pulled up my pant leg to show her. She kissed her finger and then touched my leg to "make it better". Then she told me to pull my pant leg down because she didn't want to see it anymore. 🤣

Great I did alot of these excersises this morni g bootcamping

Nice! Yep, plenty of classics in these workouts that never go out of style. :)

It's interesting to see a workout in written form. It looks very different and much harder that way!

I'm so used to doing pretty much all my training in person, so it is much easier to cue that way versus writing! Though it does help to add a video in when using some moves that people may not be familiar with. The great part about working out is you can do it as is, or just take some of the ideas you like and use it in a way that works for you! :)

I have trouble with videos because for some reason I shift into awkward positions to watch the screen. I don't do that with a live instructor - I just listen for their voice. I don't know why I can't break the habit with a video.

I actually have the same problem when I watch yoga videos to do at home! I suppose I need to do the same videos more often so I know what's coming, haha!

Me too! I know the moves...but I still crank my body around to watch just in case.

oh I like it and will try! I think I can do most of it =). But what are inchworms? It makes me think of a hip-hop dance move lol

Haha, there is the worm dance move, right? The inchworm exercise is the second pairing on the video where you start out standing then walk your hands out to the plank position and either do a pushup or just walk the hands right back in and stand back up. A lot of times you'll see them done moving where you walk your hands out first than walk your feet in so it does mimic a worm or caterpillar type movement even more that way. 🐛

oh yes we do this one in BJJ too, generally with the pushup! Good one, I like it =) It made me think of his:

Haha, that's what I thought. Definitely a little less violent. 🤣

Yikes! That's one heck of an owie, and I'm wicked impressed you pushed through and completed the work out! Thanks for sharing those circuits - I think you did a great job of explaining them, and I hope you had a wonderful weekend as well.

Definitely the worst boo boo that I have had in a while! It's looking a nice shade of yellow at the moment surrounding the point of impact. Thank you for the feedback on the explanation! I'm glad it makes sense because I didn't realize until I started writing it down that it is much easier when you are teaching a class in person. 😜

At least (if I'm remembering correctly) yellow is supposed to be a sign that the trauma is healing, so that's good. Hope it continues to heal quickly, and you're very welcome! 😊

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