Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Sample Workout: At-Home Core and Cardio

Since I talked about how important it is to change things up to see progress, I thought it would be a good idea to start sharing some of my personal workouts to give you some new ideas. 

On the weekends my workouts are "anything goes".  Because variety is the spice of life, right?  Usually I'm testing out new things I've learned or ideas I've had.  If the weather's nice I prefer to be outside on the nearby track or a hiking trail.  And then there's those weekends that are just crazy and I fit in whatever I can. 

The latter definitely applied to this past weekend.  I needed something I could do at my house while I kept an eye on the 176 loads of laundry I was doing, in between cleaning every single room in my house and prepping food for the company that was coming over later that evening.

I wanted to pay a little bit more attention to some of my favorite core exercises of the moment and then finish with some high-intensity cardio.  (You will come to learn I HATE doing cardio.  Very rarely will you see me bouncing away on an elliptical for longer than 20 minutes.  I much prefer some type of kick-your-ass drill to get the work done in half the time...even if it makes me feel like I want to die.) 

The equipment I used included my TRX Suspension Trainer, an 8 lb dumbbell, a towel, and my awesome workout playlist on my iPod.  Ready, set, GO!

  • TRX Plank - 3 sets, 45 sec each, 45 sec rest
  • TRX Side Planks - 3 sets, 30 sec each side, 30 sec rest
    • I did alternating sets of these two (i.e. 45 sec plank, 45 sec rest, 30 sec side plank on left, 30 sec rest, 30 sec plank on right, and so forth...) in a standard plank position on the elbows/forearms.
  • Turkish Get Ups - 3 sets, 6 reps/side, 8 lb dumbbell, 45 sec rest
    • Umm, yeah.  After looking at all the videos out there on YouTube, I realize I need to step that dumbbell up a bit.
  • Alligator Walks - 3 sets, 30ish ft (aka the distance from the foyer in the front of my house to the sliding glass door in the back of my house), 45 sec rest
    • I placed my feet on a towel and drug them across the house rather than using a wheel.  Now that I think about it, if I put some cleaning solution on the towel it would've saved me from mopping my hardwood floors later on. 
To get my heart pumping a little more, I did a bodyweight complex from Coach Dos' Men's Health Power Training (is it weird that this book is one of my staple coffee table books?)

  • 24 bodyweight squats
  • 24 squat jumps
  • 24 alternating forward lunges (12 per leg)
  • 24 jump lunges (12 per leg)
The idea is to complete the complex as fast as you can.  My legs hated me after the first time through, but after resting for a couple minutes I did a second round.  The second round wasn't as bad, maybe because they had already reached their pain threshold.  It definitely got my heart pounding to a level I was more than satisfied with.

Including a warm-up of some mobility exercises and post-workout stretching, it took about 40 minutes to complete.  The next day my abs felt tight in a good way - not like when it hurts to laugh or sneeze.

Give it a try and let me know what you think!

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