Hi there! Are you hanging in there, friends?
It’s a scary time for all of us, as we navigate through an unforeseeable future regarding the COVID-19 outbreak that has impacted the world and anyone reading this. New York has closed all schools until April 20th, and all restaurants and bars will be shut down with the exception of delivery and pick-up until the end of the month starting tomorrow.
It’s a crazy time for all, and especially those who depend on travel and being out and about for their businesses to succeed. And my heart sincerely goes out to the parents and families that depend on schools being open for meals and childcare during work hours. If you have any information on how to help here, please chime in on the comments or message me directly so I can update and share.
I know a lot of us are being impacted by the ability to work outside of the home, and Scott and I are doing our best to stay positive through this unpredictability. I am so thankful for this space to not only express my words, but also for even a slight service to someone who is looking for motivation. If you’re anything like me, you are getting a little antsy from staying indoors the majority of the day and a little nervous about what the next few weeks may bring. That’s a valid thing, and I don’t want to brush over it.
That said, today I invite you to shake some of the stress out with me with movement. You’d be surprised how much a workout can change your mood, and I think we could all use the boost!
Feel free to do this circuit wherever you feel the most comfortable. All you need to complete it is a set of medium dumbbells, one weight plate, or something totally unconventional like a rock if you need some fresh air. Choose your living room, your outdoor patio, or even a secluded corner in the park if you feel up for it.
I purposely photographed these moves with a medium/heavy rock from our outdoor gym space at the park for inspo, but of course, a standard dumbbell, kettlebell, or weight plate would offer the most stability for you.
Here’s to shaking it out a bit and taking everything one day at a time!
This workout calls for five rounds, but do however many that you can!
And by the way, I have another outdoor workout to share with you soon. Let me know if you like to see at-home workouts, gym workouts, or a little mix of both around here. I’m assuming that at-home and bodyweight formats would be the most useful right now, so that’s what you can expect in the next few weeks.
Now let’s get to it!
Decreasing in reps from 30 to 25, 20, 15, 10, 5 and 1 from the top to the bottom of the list.
- bicycle crunches
Start on the floor with your lower back pressed into the mat or floor. Contract your core muscles. Place your hands on your head and keep your elbows wide. Lift your right knee to about a 45 degree angle. Rotate your chest so that your left elbow touches the right knee. Slowly go through a bicycle pedal motion and alternate touching your elbows from side to side. Right then left equals one rep. For this workout, repeat for 15 reps, or 30 total crunches.
- dumbbell swings
Before you start, please note that this is not an arm exercise. If done correctly, it works the legs, abs, and booty. Also, a dumbbell or kettlebell is the preferred weight to use, but you can get creative if you don’t have access to one. Just be sure to hold on tight and focus on your form throughout the exercise!
Start standing with your legs slightly wider than your hips and toes slightly pointed outward. Hold a medium dumbbell in both hands and go down to a squat position while bringing the dumbbell between your legs. Make sure to keep your spine straight! Keep your chest open and shoulders down. Engaging your core, straighten your knees and bring your hips over your feet.
Squeeze your glutes. Your arms will swing forward, and there’s no need to go higher then your shoulders. Think of a pendulum type of movement. Let the weight fall back between your legs and return to the squat. This is one rep. Repeat for 25 reps and remember to grab a weight that allows you to do so.
Get on the floor and position your hands slightly wider than your shoulders. Raise up on your toes, or modify by dropping your knees. 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, then lower and lift. Complete for 20 reps.
Get off of your knees and straighten your legs for more of a challenge!
- dumbbell rows
Start with your feet hip width apart, holding dumbbells in front of you and sit back in your hips.
Bend over at a 45 degree angle and make sure to keep your back neutral or even slightly arched (not rounded) with your core engaged. Keep your chest up, your shoulders pressed down and away from your ears, and your chin lifted.
With your palms facing your body, engage your abs and squeeze your shoulder blades together as you bring the weights towards your torso. Keep your elbows pointed upward!
Slowly lower the weights back to the starting position to complete one rep. Repeat for 15 reps.
If you don’t have dumbbells, you can use any weighted item that seems appropriate using the same steps as above with both arms holding it steady.
- dumbbell reverse lunges
The weight is optional here, and it will add more of a challenge and resistance for the move.
Start standing tall with your hands on your hips and feet under your hips. If you have a weight, either hold a dumbbell in each hand with your palms facing you, or one bigger weight in front of your chest.
Step backward with your left leg, and lower your body until your right knee is bent at least 90 degrees and your left knee nearly touches the floor. Push yourself back to the starting position by pressing into the floor. Alternate between sides until you get to 10 per side, or 20 total. Aim to keep your front heel under your knee and avoid leaning forward or back!
- rotational squat jumps
Start with your feet a bit wider than your shoulders. Stand tall, then slightly bend your knees before the start of the exercise.
(Note that you can modify this move here by doing regular squat jumps or even air squats if jumping isn’t for you. If you’d like a little more challenge than an air squat, you could also take the jump out and step into a rotational squat from side to side instead.)
Quickly push yourself up into the air (your body should be straight), then land at a 180 degree rotation to the right in the squat position and pause for a moment before coming back to the position you just came from.
Then, in a quick motion, jump back to face front and land with a slight bend to the knee and pause to reset before repeating to the other side. Alternate the jumps and think of going in a pattern of right, front, left, front, repeat.
Complete for five full sets (10 total).
- plank hold
Get into a plank position on your elbows and toes, or go for a straight arm plank on your hands and toes. Make sure that your hips are in line with your shoulders, your elbows are under your shoulders (or hands, if you opt for a straight arm plank), your legs are straight, and your core is tight.
Hold this position tight for 60 seconds (or longer, if you can!) without letting your back round or arch. You can always drop your knees to modify.
Here’s a tip for easy access to workouts I share on this blog:
» Right click the workout graphic above and click Pin It.
» Label it with the description you’d like, select a Board to save it to and press Pin It.
(A great pin description for this workout could be: “indoor or outdoor workout circuit to get you moving at home!”)
To save and print:
» Right click the workout graphic above and click Save Image As.
» Label it with .jpg at the end and save it to your computer desktop as an image file that you can easily open and print.
If you’re on your smart phone:
» Tap and hold your finger down on the graphic.
» Click Save Image or Save to Camera Roll.
I hope this workout helps you stay focused on your goals during the madness, and let me know if you give it a try.
Stay safe out there!
Disclaimer: Although I am a certified personal trainer, I am not necessarily your personal trainer. The workouts I post are what work best for me and might not be the right type of exercises for you. I always recommend consulting a doctor or health professional before making changes to your diet and/or fitness routines.