Who’s ready to start their morning off with a nice and sweaty circuit workout?
HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) workouts involve bodyweight or light weight exercises that are performed during small periods of time followed by short rest periods in 30 minutes or less. You can incorporate your favorite types of cardio (biking, jumping rope, running, rowing, stair-climbing, etc.), plyometric exercises (power movements using maximum force in minimal time), and change your work to rest ratio as you see fit.
I have always been a fan of interval workouts, and rely on the stopwatch timer on my iPhone, fitness watch, or my interval timer to help me keep track of when to work and rest.
This workout is designed to be completed in 27 minutes, so make sure to take some extra time to warm up and cool down!
It’s set to go through three rounds of nine exercises (including both sides of the single leg dead lifts and side planks), and at a pace of :40 work, :20 rest.
If any of these moves are new to you, please take a careful look at the exercise descriptions below. Pay attention to your form, listen to your body, and modify any exercise you need to.
While I usually feature original photos in my exercise descriptions, this workout showcases a collection of awesome (sourced) photos from POPSUGAR. They’ve covered close to every workout move in the book!
• reverse crunches
Lie on your back with your knees bent and hands to your sides. Make sure you start with your lower back pressed down into the mat and avoid arching. Lift your legs and bend your knees to about 90 degrees. Keep your chin away from your chest, pull your knees in toward your chest, and hold for 2 seconds. Slowly lower your legs back to the starting position.
Be careful not to use the momentum of your legs moving to swing them up. Control the movement with your abs only!
• mountain climbers
Start in a straight arm plank position on your hands and toes. Bend your right knee in towards your chest, resting your foot on the floor.
Jump up and switch your feet in the air, bringing the left foot in and push the right foot back. Alternate your feet as fast (and safely) as you can for 40 seconds.
• single leg dead lifts
Use your bodyweight for more of a balance challenge, or grab a kettlebell, dumbbell, or bottle of water to add resistance!
Start in a standing position with your feet together. Lift your left foot behind you. Place your left hand on your hip and bend forward to reach the right hand towards the floor and left leg parallel to the floor. Slowly lower your body as far as you can, briefly pause, then push your body back to the starting position.
As you come back up, engage your glutes to to push your hips forward and avoid lifting from your lower back. Keep your core tight and chest lifted throughout the entire exercise.
• push ups with rotations
Get on the floor and position your hands slightly wider than your shoulders. Raise up on your toes. Keep your body in a straight line from your head to toe without dropping your middle or arching your back. Before you begin the push-up, contract your abs and keep your core tight. Think of pulling your belly button towards your spine.
Lower down toward the floor, then push up through your arms. Twist to the left, reaching your left arm to the ceiling. Be careful not to let your hips rise or lower, then return to straight arm plank position. Alternate sides by repeating the steps with a twist to the right and a reach with the right arm.
• floor triceps dips
Start with your hands directly under your shoulders, feet hip width apart, knees bent, ankles under your knees, and shoulders back. Don’t let your shoulders slouch, and keep your chest lifted throughout the entire exercise. Tighten your core and focus on moving your arms, not your hips.
Slowly bend your elbows and lower your body until it’s a couple of inches off the floor. Once your reach the bottom of the movement, push yourself back up using your arms only. Be careful not to swing your hips up and down! Remember, this is an upper body exercise that targets the back of the arms.
• jump squats (or air squats)
Start with your feet a bit wider than your shoulders. Stand tall, then come down into a squat position with your thighs slightly higher then your knees. Quickly push yourself up into the air (your body should be straight), then land in the squat position and pause for a moment before repeating.
You can always choose to do (stationary) air squats if you feel uncomfortable jumping.
• side plank hold & pulses
Start by lying on your side and stack your feet on top of each other. Position your elbow directly under your shoulder. Lift your hips and torso off of the ground while keping the abs and glutes contracted. Place your hand on your hip.
Hold a side elbow plank for 20 seconds, then begin to lower and lift your hips in a small pulsing motion for the next 20 seconds. Rest for 20 seconds, then complete a :20 plank hold then :20 of pulses on the other side. You can modify this exercise by bending the bottom knee or intensify it by raising your top leg a few inches off of the other.
I hope you enjoy this circuit if you feel inclined to give it a try! I always welcome feedback and suggestions on what types of workouts you’d like to see more of on the blog, so comment away.
Thanks for checking in, and I’ll see you later this afternoon!
Disclaimer: Although I am a certified personal trainer, the workouts I post are what work best for me and might not be the right type of exercises for you. If you decide to give this workout a try, please listen to your body and rest or modify as you see fit. I always recommend consulting a doctor or health professional before making changes to your diet or fitness routine.