And what better way is there to start the holiday off than with an amazing quick workout you can do with your family and friends!
The Workout That Keeps On Giving (hehe)
Set a timer for 20 second intervals of work. When your partner performs reps, you’ll perform the hold. When you perform reps of the move, they’ll hold. Then after you each do holds and reps, you’ll rest 20 seconds. Complete 3-4 rounds through on a set then rest 20-40 seconds and move on to the next set of moves!
20 seconds Squat Hold (keep feet no wider than shoulder width)
20 seconds Squat Jump
20 seconds Rest
20 seconds Downward Dog
20 seconds Downward Dog Climber Push Ups
20 seconds Rest
20 seconds Sumo Squat Hold
20 seconds Squat Rotations
20 seconds Rest
20 seconds High Plank Hold
20 seconds Single Arm Plank Jacks
20 seconds Rest
20 seconds Banana Hold
20 seconds V-Ups
20 seconds Rest
If your partners don’t share your view of fun, you can always do this workout even on your own. Hold for 20 seconds then do the second move, or reps, for 20 seconds then rest 20 seconds and repeat! Alternating with a partner can just make it fun!
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Squat Hold: To do the Squat Hold, stand with your feet about hip-width to shoulder-width apart. You can reach your hands out in front of you. Then sit back into a squat and hold. Hold with your knees bent to about 90 degrees. Keep your chest up and your heels down as you hold.
Squat Jump: To do Squat Jumps, stand with your feet between hip-width and shoulder-width apart. Sit your butt down and back into as low a squat as you can with good form (aka your heels stay down and your chest stays up and your knees don’t cave in). You can swing your arms back as you squat or reach your hands down to touch the ground. Then explode up out of the squat and jump as high off the ground as possible, reaching your hands overhead and extending your body fully as you jump. As you land, sink right back into the squat so you can explode right back up. Do not land with your legs straight. Make sure to bend your knees as you land and try to land softly to protect your knees. Beginners may need to rest between each rep; however, that doesn’t mean landing with your legs straight. You should never land with your legs completely locked. Bend your knees to help you absorb the impact of landing even if you pause between jumps. To make the move harder, jump up and sink right back into the squat to repeat as quickly as possible. Really focus on a soft landing and then exploding quickly into as high a jump as you can.
Downward Dog: To do the Downward Dog, start in the high plank position with your hands under your shoulders and your feet about hip-width apart. Without walking your hands back toward your feet, push your butt up toward the ceiling as you press your chest back toward your legs and drive your heels down toward the ground. Keep your arms straight as you press your chest back and try to get your biceps by your ears. Make sure to press through your entire hand and not simply rock toward the outside of your palms. Feel your fingers gripping the ground. As you hold, focus on getting your back flat and a nice straight line from the heels of your hands up to your tailbone. You want your arms to be in line with your torso (aka your biceps by the ears).
Downward Dog Climber Push Ups: To do Downward Dog Climber Push Ups, set up in a high plank position with your feet about hip-width to shoulder-width apart. You want your feet a bit wider to help you prevent rotation during the climber. Then push back into downward dog, driving your butt back and up in the air as you extend your spine and drive your heels down toward the ground. Keep your legs straight as you think about lifting your butt toward the ceiling. Pause then move back forward into a plank, perform a push up with your body moving as one unit and then climb down into a forearm plank. Climb down one side at a time, placing your elbow right below your shoulder. Lower down onto both forearms one at a time and then climb back up, placing your hand beneath your shoulder as you push up. Again push back into downward dog and repeat the move. Try to alternate which side you climb with each time.
Sumo Squat Hold: To do the Sumo Squat Hold, set your feet wider than shoulder-width apart. Turn your toes out slightly as you stand in a wide stance. You can vary the exact width based on your height and leg length. Just make sure that when you squat down, your knees don’t cave in. Then squat down, sitting your butt down and back. Do not let your knees cave in as you squat. Squeeze your butt to pull your knees open and keep them in line with your ankles. Do not go as wide if you struggle to prevent your knees from caving in. Sink to about parallel and hold. You don’t want to rest below parallel or it can actually make it easier.
Squat Rotations: To do Squat Rotations, set your feet about shoulder-width apart. You can go more narrow or wider based on what feels comfortable when you sink down. Sit your butt back and sink into a little squat. You will be in about a half squat position. Bend your elbows to bring your hands up around chest height. Staying low, jump to twist your lower body to the right. You want to stay in the squat as you twist your lower body to one side. Do not hop your feet together. Stay in the squat to twist. Twist your upper body even more toward that front hip, rotating your arms even down outside or toward that hip to help you twist more. You may find as you twist in the squat only your front foot fully touches down and that is ok. Just really try to stay in that half squat as you hop to twist. To modify, don’t sink as low.
High Plank Hold: To do the High Plank Hold, set up on your hands and toes (advanced) or hands and knees (beginner). Feet or knees are together and hands should be just outside your chest but underneath your shoulders. Draw your belly button in toward your spine and squeeze your quads, glutes and adductors. Engage your entire body to keep your body in a nice straight line from your head to your heels. You should even feel yourself driving back into your heels (or knees) not pushing yourself forward. Your shoulder blades should be down and back and your shoulders shouldn’t be up by your ears. Do not let your upper back round. Keep your head in line with your spine. If you really draw your belly button in and tilt your pelvic forward, your abs should almost instantly start shaking.
Single Arm Plank Jacks: To do Single Arm Plank Jacks, set up in a high plank position with your hands a bit closer together under your shoulders and your feet together. Brace your abs and make sure your body is in a nice straight line. Then jump your feet out wide, and as you do, lift one hand to touch your opposite shoulder. Resist the urge to really rotate as you lift the hand or let your butt go up in the air. Try to keep your hips down and your core as square to the ground as possible. Jump your feet back together and place the hand back down. When you quickly jump your feet out again, this time lift the other hand to touch your opposite shoulder. Jump quickly back in and lower the hand back down. Keep repeating the jack with your feet, alternating which hand you lift to tap your shoulder.
Banana Hold: To do the Banana, and improve your mind-body connection so that you can engage your entire core (everything from your shoulders to your knees), start lying on your back with your legs out straight and your arms reaching overhead on the ground. Your legs should be together and your arms should be right by your head. Press your low back into the ground and draw your belly button in toward your spine as you lift your legs and arms up off the ground. Your neck and head should be in a neutral position between your arms and your legs should be together and out straight a few inches off the ground. Hold here, squeezing your legs together as you try to get your shoulder blades up off the ground while keeping your low back against the ground and abs engaged. Beginners may find they need to lift their legs up higher toward the ceiling or bend their knees to keep their low back against the ground and their abs engaged. Beginners can also try an easier variation of the Pelvic Tilt if they feel their low back taking over.
V-Ups: To do the V-Up, lie flat on your back with your legs out straight in front of you and your arms reaching back overhead. Then, keeping your legs out straight, lift your legs a bit off the ground and press your low back down into the ground. Engage your abs by also slightly crunching your shoulder blades up off the ground. Then lift your feet up toward the ceiling, keeping your legs straight, as you come up to balance on your butt, reaching your hands up toward your toes. Try to lift up as high as you can. Pause for a second, holding while balanced on your glutes. Beginners may need to bend their legs more or even start with a Full-Body Crunch. Then lie back down, but do not fully relax onto the ground. Keep your abs engaged and don’t touch your feet down or completely relax your shoulders down. Reach your arms back overhead and then pike back up, reaching your hands back toward your feet as you again balance on your glutes. Make sure you feel your abs working and not your low back taking over.