[Terra Core Series] 30-Minute Upper Body + Cardio Tabata Challenge

[Terra Core Series] Upper Body + Cardio Tabata Challenge

It's time for another Terra Core workout today here on the blog!  You guys, I love love love this piece of equipment.  It's pretty much an all-in-one on the go gym that's so incredibly versatile.  If you haven't checked out my previous posts, read more about the Terra Core here in my intro, and if you're looking for another TC workout, try this 15-minute plyometric EMOM workout for your lower body.

Today's workout is all about the arms and upper body, along with some sneaky cardio thrown in the mix.  I love the Tabata style of this workout because it really makes you push yourself, but you get that nice 10-second rest in too.  Ready to work up a sweat??  Here we go!

[Terra Core Series] 30-Minute Upper Body + Cardio Tabata Challenge | In Fitness and In Health

Upper Body + Cardio Tabata Challenge Workout

What You'll Need: the Terra Core trainer and some floor space.  If you don't have a Terra Core, you can substitute a kettlebell and a Bosu ball for the workout (mentioned in parentheses next to each exercise).
What You'll Do: each Tabata round consists of 20 second of work followed by 10 seconds of rest.  You'll do that 8 times through (totaling 4 minutes) for each move, before moving onto the next.  Set your timers and let's get to it!

Overhead Swings (substitute kettlebell swings) - this one is similar to a kettlebell swing, but you're using the Terra Core and swinging it all the way up over your head.  Hold the Terra Core dome side down, and firmly grip the side bars.  Start in a squat position, Terra Core between your legs, and swing it up over your head in one fluid motion, standing as you extend your arms overhead.  Swing it back down between your legs, lowering down into a squat position.  Keep the swings going for 20 seconds, then take a 10 second break.  Do this for 8 rounds.

Hammer Curls (substitute kettlebell or dumbbells) - start standing, holding onto the 'power grip' handles on the underside of the Terra Core.  With arms fully extended to start, perform a bicep curl bringing the Terra Core up to chest level.  Repeat the curls for 20 seconds of work, 10 seconds of rest x 8.

Push Up to Squat + Chest Press (substitute Bosu ball) - start with the Terra Core dome-side down on the ground, with a firm grip on the power grip handles.  Do 1 push up here, then in one quick motion, hop your feet up to meet your hands, and raise into a squat while picking up the Terra Core to chest level.  Maintaining the fluid motion still, press the Terra Core away from your chest and bring it back in immediately.  Reverse the motion back down into a plank, and go on to do another push up.  Keep going in this fashion for your 20/10 intervals x 8.

Upright Rows (substitute kettlebell) - start standing with the Terra Core perpendicular to your body, holding onto one of the bar handles with both hands, dome-side facing away from you.  Pull the Terra Core up toward your chin, flaring elbows out and keeping your shoulders down and back (i.e. not shrugged up towards your ears).  Lower back down to start.  Keep 'rowing' for 20 seconds of work, followed by 10 seconds of rest x 8 rounds.

Pike Push Up to Plank Step Down (substitute Bosu ball) - start with the Terra Core dome-side up on the ground.  Get into a pike position with your hands on the dome and do 1 pike push up, looking back towards your feet, lowering the crown of your head to the dome (shown).  Push back up, then lower your body into a plank position.  From here, step one arm down at a time in front of the Terra Core (shown) so you end up in a plank with the Terra Core underneath your stomach (shown).  Reverse that entire move, so you press yourself back up onto the Terra Core one arm at a time, raise your hips so you're back up in a pike, and perform another pike push up.  Keep going in this fashion for 20 seconds of work, then rest for 10, and back at it for 8 rounds total.

Switch Kick Tricep Dips (substitute Bosu ball) - flip the Terra Core over so it's dome-side down.  Start in front of it with your hands placed on the flat surface.  With one leg bent, and the other extended straight up, perform 1 tricep dip (shown).  Then press yourself back up, and as you do so, push off the foot that's on the ground, switching feet mid-air (shown), to land back down on the other leg (shown).  Do another tricep dip here, then repeat the switch kick.  Keep going for 20 seconds on, 10 seconds off x 8.

Suitcase Carrys (substitute kettlebell) - start holding the Terra Core by one of the bar handles with the dome facing out.  Keeping your upper body in one vertical straight line, walk forward.  Your body will want to compensate for the uneven load by leaning over to the side that isn't holding the Terra Core.  The key is to engage your abdominal muscles and trunk to keep your spine vertical.  Keep walking forwards (and turn around to go back the way you came) for 20 seconds on, 10 seconds off x 8.  Alternate sides each round. 

Whew!  How'd that workout go for you?  Hopefully you worked up a sweat and are feelin' the burn in your upper body! 

Readers: chat with me!  Have you tried out the Terra Core yet?  If not, do you think it's a piece of equipment you would like to use?  What about Tabata workouts?  How do you like those?  What was everyone up to this weekend?  How are you planning to stay active this week?

[Terra Core Series] 15-Minute Plyometric EMOM Workout

[Terra Core Series] 15-Minute Plyometric EMOM Workout | In Fitness and In Health

Happy Friday to you!  I've been so excited for today because I get to share the first workout in my new Terra Core workout series on the blog!  If you haven't yet caught the rundown on what this awesome piece of equipment is, check out my introduction post here from earlier this week.  I'm seriously in love and I think this is something everyone (yes, everyone!) needs to have in their home gym collection. 

But okay, onto the workout.  Today's workout is a new(er)-to-me-structure called EMOM, which stands for Every Minute On the Minute.  I learned about this time structure in a bootcamp class I took a few months ago and I love it because it's high intensity, with variable rest periods where the harder (read: faster) you work, the longer you get to rest.  The structure is explained below if you're new to this format.  Today's EMOM features almost all plyometric moves which will ramp up your heart rate and work your lower body all at once.  So grab your Terra Core (or a Bosu*) and clear some floor space - let's do this!

[Terra Core Series] 15-Minute Plyometric EMOM Workout | In Fitness and In Health

15-Minute Plyometric EMOM Workout

What You'll Need: a Terra Core trainer* and a timer.  
*If you don't have a Terra Core (I highly recommend getting one - 25% discount code in my previous info post), you can do this workout on a Bosu ball, with a slight modification to the lateral walks (as described below).
What You'll Do: set your timer for 15 minutes.  When it begins, start with exercise #1 and try to complete it as fast as you can within that first minute.  When you finish that exercise, the duration of that minute is time for rest (so the faster you finish, the more time you'll have to rest).  When minute 2 starts, move onto exercise #2, only resting for the duration of that minute.  Keep going with the exercises in this fashion for the full 15 minutes (you'll complete 3 5-minute rounds of the 5 exercises above).

20 Low Squat Jacks - get into a low squat position with your feet places on either side of the Terra Core.  From here, hop up onto the Terra Core maintaining the same upper body height (i.e. not standing up in either position).  Keep going for 20 (each hop on counts as 1). 

10 Lunge to Knee Drive Skips (each leg) - start in a lunge position with your front foot on top of the Terra Core.  From here, drive your back leg up toward your chest fast as you stand.  As your knee comes up, push off of the foot that's on the Terra Core to hop upward in a small skip.  Land back down, and reverse the move to a backward lunge (back into the position you started).  Go for 10 reps on each leg, moving quickly.

10 Lateral Squat Walks + Jump - start at one end of the Terra Core, with your inside foot resting on the edge.  From here, propel yourself upward in a jump (as shown in picture 1), pushing off both legs, but actively engaging your quads more in the leg that's raised.  Land back down with that foot on top of the Terra Core (2), and walk sideways across it, maintaining a low squat position (3, 4).  Once you reach the other side, jump again.  Now walk back the way you came.  Each pass across the Terra Core counts as 1 (or you can just count the number of jumps you do) - 10 total.  *A note on using the Bosu with this move: since the Bosu is circular, you won't have the surface area to actually walk across it, so simply step up and over, jumping on each side.

15 Reverse Burpees - these are one of my favorite moves to do on the floor for some leg work and cardio, but adding the Terra Core makes it both slightly easier and more challenging.  (Easier because you're elevated off the floor, so standing up is less of a challenge; harder because rolling back onto the unstable surface forces you to engage your abs a lot more to maintain balance.) Start standing with the Terra Core directly behind you length-wise.  Sit down on it, and roll back so your back is flat and feet are lifted off the ground (as shown).  From here, roll back up to a standing position, and in one motion, jump upward.  When you land, immediately roll back onto the Terra Core again.  Keep repeating that motion for 15 reps.

15 Plank Jacks - boy, these ones got to my quads a lot more than I thought they would!  Try to move quickly with these ones... start in a plank position with your body parallel to the Terra Core, hands on the ground and your feet elevated (as shown).  From here, hop your feet off, bending your knees as you land (shown).  Now push off your toes and hop back up onto the Terra Core, squeezing your quads and glutes.  Keep hopping on and off for 15 reps (each hop off counts as 1).  Trainer Tip: keep your abs engaged here, too.  Even though this will mainly work your quads, you'll want to maintain a neutral spine, which means sucking that belly button in and keeping those abs active.

Repeat 2 more times for the full 15-minute workout.

Whew!  You are DONE! I hope your legs are thanking you. Let me know how you liked the workout, whether you're trying it on the Terra Core or on a Bosu.  And reminder, you can get 25% off the Terra Core - discount code in my previous post here.

Readers: chat with me!  Have you tried using the Terra Core yet?  What do you think?!  Have you ever done an EMOM workout before?  If so, how do you like them?  Do they challenge you to push yourself?  What's everyone up to this holiday weekend?

Spotlight On: The Terra Core

Spotlight On: The Terra-Core Trainer

Disclosure: I was gifted the Terra Core trainer from Terra-Core Fitness in exchange for a review and feature here on the blog.  As always, my opinions, text, and workout creations with the Terra Core are my own.  I genuinely love this piece of equipment (it's soooo versatile and fun to use) and I hope you do too!

You guys, I'm SO EXCITED to introduce you to the Terra Core.  If you saw my sneak peek on Instagram yesterday, you'll know I'm STOKED - talk about awesome new pieces of fitness equipment... this one takes the cake for my new favorite!  It was released in early 2016, so it's still a relatively new fitness tool, but it's catching on, and I have no doubt you'll be seeing these in every major athletic club and fitness studio around over the next few years (so get in on the action early!).

Seriously though, I've been playing around with this thing for a few months now, developing some great workouts for you - soon to be a new series on the blog because I love it so much.  This baby is here to stay, so get ready - challenging and fun workouts are coming 'atcha, starting with number one on Friday!  

Terra Core Balance Trainer

So, what is it?

The Terra Core is like a combination of a balance/stability trainer (like the Bosu), a bench, and a stepper... plus a LOT more.  It's an oblong piece of equipment that has an air-filled dome on the top, providing instability when stepped or jumped on.  Unlike most other stability trainers that have a flat, mostly unusable bottom surface, this one has a BUNCH of versatile features like power grip handles, long metal bars for carrying or lifting, and grooves along the curved edges to hold all kinds of resistance tubing.

The top dome is made of a thick, smooth plastic and a rougher plastic to provide some traction.  It stands about 10 inches tall from ground to top, and weighs 28 pounds.  The base is incredibly sturdy and well-made, and the oblong shape provides a lot more surface area to work with, for example when doing wide-stance squats, lying down for crunches, or using as a bench.  It's definitely a portable piece of equipment, too, so you can take it with you to a park or move it outside for a change of scenery.  Below is a picture of the Terra Core in relation to my feet for size comparison (don't mind the dust on top - I filmed a workout with this outside on the porch):

Terra Core Balance Trainer

Possibilities on both sides!

Underneath, the Terra Core offers SO many possibilities for exercises.  (It's actually been an exciting challenge to put together workouts because there are endless options running through my head!)  At each end it has smaller power grip handles to perform, say, bent over rows, push ups, or a clean and press (yes, those are all included in upcoming workouts!).  The longer metal bars that run parallel to it can be used for push ups, rocking back and forth in a plank for some ab work, or just for carrying it around.  You'll also notice the molded grooves along the rounded edges... those are slots to hold resistance tubing when the Terra Core is dome-side-up - a great feature to easily transition from a move on top to immediately using the band, or to use as a bench prop for supine work.  I won't go into too much detail about all the exercise possibilities in this post since there will be a whole workout series devoted to this tool (starting Friday!).  So stay tuned for those, but keep reading because you guys get a special reader discount!

Terra Core underside
Terra Core Trainer

Special discount for blog readers!

The Terra Core is a bit on the pricier side of exercise equipment, running $279 plus tax.  But I'm happy to share 25% off using code INFITINHEALTH at check out - that's almost $70 saved right there!  With all the possibilities of exercises (over 250!) and workouts you can create with this thing, it's a REALLY great addition to for your home gym or fitness studio.

And for all my fellow trainers and instructors out there, Terra-Core Fitness has partnered with the American Council on Exercise to offer certifications in Terra Core classes and training!  CECs using an awesome piece of equipment?  YAAASS!  The certification and classes will be coming out soon (I can't wait), but in the meantime, check out ACE's review and first thoughts about the Terra Core here.  Stay tuned here on Friday for the first in the Terra Core workout series - a plyometric EMOM (every minute on the minute)... it's a quad & glute burner for sure!

For more information on the Terra Core, visit the Terra Core Fitness website, and check out their Instagram for some awesome Terra Core workout videos!  

Readers: chat with me!  Have you heard of the Terra Core before?  Does anything about it intrigue you?  What exercises would you like to see?  If you're a fellow trainer/instructor, do you think you'd be interested in becoming Terra Core certified?  How do you think your clients/classes would like these?  Hope you all have a great rest of your week, and I'll see you back here on Friday for a killer workout!