Before we get into today's workout, I want to welcome all new readers to the blog, especially those visiting today from the blog hop hosted by Kristy of Runaway Bridal Planner. I am participating in a health & fitness blog hop this week, which is a fun way for bloggers to connect and learn more about each other. Whether you're a brand new reader, or have been subscribed for a long time, I'm so happy you're here! To make what's already a pretty long post a little bit shorter, I'd like to point you towards the re-introduction I gave back when I participated in this hop for the first time. That post has been updated since it was written, however I encourage you to check out the About Page and Fun Facts to learn a bit more about me and the blog.
Okay, now onto the fitness! Today's workout was inspired by recent travels where I wanted to work out, but didn't want to disturb the other house guests or neighbors with a lot of jumping around. This lower body workout is perfect for quiet spaces like apartments, hotel rooms, or even just the next room in your house. You don't need any equipment to do it, so it's great for doing at home or on the go, and it's only a quick 15 minutes. Keep reading for the details!
15-Minute Low Impact Legs & Glutes Workout
What You'll Need: just some floor space and an exercise mat if desired.
What You'll Do: go through each exercise for a total of 1 minute (broken up into various segments described below). Repeat the 5 exercises 2 times through for the full 15-minute workout.
Lunge-to-Kick Sequence (30 seconds each leg) - start standing and step forward with your right leg into a forward lunge. Get as low as you can. Push yourself back up to standing and immediately do 1 front kick on the right leg. Then step out to the right into a squat. Push yourself back up and immediately kick that leg out into a side kick. Now step your right foot back into a backward lunge, push back up, and do 1 back kick on the right. Keep the pattern going on the right leg for 30 seconds, then switch to the left.
Square Pattern Squats with Lunges (15 seconds each position) - I think looking at the graphic for this one might be more helpful than words since this description is lengthy, so bear with me. Picture an imaginary square on the floor. In each corner, you're holding a low squat with your legs and feet together. The horizontal sides are wide stance squats, and the vertical sides are lunges (the leg that's forward in the lunge is the one that's on the outside of the square). Each position is held for 15 seconds, for a total of 2 minutes. So, for example, start in the top right corner of the square and hold a squat for 15 seconds with your feet and legs together. Next, step out to the left into a wide stance squat and hold for 15 seconds. Now bring the right foot in and hold a low squat for 15. Step back with your right leg and hold a lunge for 15. Step your left foot back into a low squat again and hold... so on and so forth until you complete the full square and wind up back in the top right corner (or wherever you started). Feel the burn!
Runner Stance Heel Touches (30 seconds each leg) - fair warning: the burn creeps up on you in these babies! Start in a runner's stance lunge - crouched down, finger tips lightly touching the ground, your right leg forward with all your weight on it, back leg extended back straight, toes lightly touching the floor with hardly any weight on that leg. From here, and maintaining the crouched down position, bring your back leg forward so your left toes lightly touch your right heel. Extend your left leg back out again, remembering not to shift any weight backwards as you do. Keep bringing that left leg in and out for 30 seconds, then switch legs.
Side Plank Leg Lifts (30 seconds each side) - get into a low side plank on your elbow with your top leg bearing all the weight and your bottom leg extended slightly in front of you, foot flexed. Maintaining a strong plank position, lift and lower your bottom leg. Keep going for 30 seconds on one side, then switch to the other.
Inside Knee Press + Pulse + Hold (10/10/10 x 2 each side) - this move involves very little actual movement, but you'll feel it in your leg adductors (inner thigh muscles) all the same. Lie on your back with your left leg extended out straight (foot hovering over the floor for some abdominal engagement), and your right leg bent to 90˚. Put your left hand on the inside of your right knee. Staying in this position, press your hand into your knee and your knee back into your hand (both adding resistance to the other). Press for 10, then pulse the movement (small quick presses) for 10 seconds, then hold the press for 10 seconds. Repeat that once more on the right leg, then switch to the left.
Remember to go through that one more time for the full 15-minute workout.
Readers: chat with me! How often do you train your legs? Do you incorporate more plyometric/cardio components to your leg training or do you stick with strength training (or a combo)? What are some of your favorite bodyweight leg exercises? If you are new to the blog, how do you like it? Any workouts that you might try?