Work for the Weekend: 15 Minute Strength Circuit

Before your happy hour hits make the commitment to hit the gym. I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: those cocktails taste even better after a good sweatfest. 

For this workout, try to lift a little on the heavier side, go on – grab those 10-15 lb’ers! Move SLOW and with control through each weighted exercise and quickly transition and move at a rapid pace for the cardio bursts. Do the set below TWICE for 15 minutes.

Strength Circuit

Plank Rows: Hold weights in a hand plank position with your feet shoulder or hip width apart. Perform a row, bringing your elbows directly backwards. Keep your core tight and don’t let your hips rock back and forth as you alternate sides. For a modification: Hold your plank with your knees resting on the floor. For a challenge: Bring feet closer together. The smaller base you create with your legs the harder this will be.

Burpees: Put your weights off to the side far enough away so you don’t trip on them. Start in standing position. As you fold forward to put your hands in a plank position kick your feet back and drop your chest to the ground. Hop your feet back up to your hands and explode up into a jump. Land softly on your feet and start the movement again. For a modification: ditch the jump. For a challenge: take your jump to a tuck jump, bringing your knees to your chest as you jump as HIGH as you can.

Hammer Curls: Grab your weights and stand with your feet together and a slight bend in the knee. Curl both arms together with the weights facing each other, your palms facing each other too. For a modification: curl one arm at a time. For a challenge: move SLOWLY to create some extra resistance.

High Knees: Weights are back off to the side. Start in a standing position running in place. Try not to lean back as you bring your knees higher and higher to your chest. As you do this keep focus on your legs (duh) but also your core. You should feel those lower abs too! For a modification: take out the bounce and bring one leg up at a time. For a challenge: move faster and bring your knees even HIGHER!

Prisoner Squats: Your standard squat is taken up a notch when your hands are behind your head holding one of your dumbbells. Keep the shoulders down and your chest open. At the bottom of your squat your legs should be bent at 90 degrees, weight in your heels, and your butt back like you’re about to sit in a chair. For a modification: don’t use your weights. For a challenge: Get lower into your squat and grab your second weight.

Alternating Froggers: Ditch the weights. Kind of like a mountain climber, but a little different. In a hand plank position bring your right foot all the way to the outside of your right hand. Your heel should line up with your wrist. As you bring each leg out your butt will pike up naturally, but stay as low to the ground as you can. Quickly alternate sides adding in a little hop for momentum. For a modification: take the hop out. For a challenge: hop both feet up to both wrists kicking your hands up in the air at chest level. You’ll find out where this move is called “froggers” here. You look like a frog, obvi!

Triceps Kick-backs: One dumbbell in each hand start in a standing position with your feet together, knees slightly bent and hinge forward slightly at the hips. Elbows stay plastered to your torso as you “kick” your forearms straight back. Your arms should end fully extended locked at the elbow. For a modification: extend one arm back at a time.

Mountain Climbers: You know the drill here. No weights, but you’ll be suckin’ air so don’t worry about it! Hand plank position bring opposite knee to opposite elbow. For a modification: Slow down, one leg at a time, pausing in a plank position in between. For a challenge: Quick, quick, quick! No pause, and add a little bounce to your step. Literally.

Side Plank Right/Left: Start on your right side your right elbow underneath your shoulder. Your legs should be fully extended with your hips and feet stacked directly on top of one another. Keep those obliques taut and tight. For a modification drop your right knee on the floor. For a challenge raise your left leg up as high as you can and pulse…pulse…pulse…Flip over and switch for your left side after 30 seconds and hold for 30.

Tuck Jumps: Start in a standing position. Drive your arms back as you jump as high as you can bringing your knees up to your chest. If this is too much just do a squat jump!

Happy Friday!!

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