Plyo Box Total Body & Core Workout with Power Intervals

Plyo Box Total Body & Core with Power Intervals

HELLO FRIENDS!! It seems like it’s been forever since I posted a full workout here on the blog! Full details on that are coming up in a future blog post, but it’s been silent on here for good reason: I GRADUATED GRAD SCHOOL!! Yep, I now have an MPH (Master of Public Health). I couldn’t be more excited! I’ll update you on the full graduate school experience soon. For now, let’s get to sweating!

I’m partnering with Power Guidance for today’s workout. Who doesn’t love building POWER in their training? I love a good high intensity, short duration power interval, and what better way to add that in than plyometrics? Today we’ll use a plyo box, which I love to use either by itself or in combination with other equipment to elevate your workout intensity. You can do some pretty fun things with it!

The plyo box here is a 3-in-1 soft foam plyo box from PG. It’s a pretty decent addition to any home gym, being super lightweight (17 lbs), and very easy to move in and out of storage. The soft foam makes plyometric exercises a lot less scary since your shins will be spared if you do happen to trip or fall. One thing I like about solid boxes like this is that you can’t see through the bottom like platform plyo boxes (for some reason that always makes me anxious, even if I know I can clear the height). The height on this one is adjustable (20”/26”/30”) and it’s labeled nicely for ease of use (great for transitions between exercises). The only thing I found a bit off about this box is that at the 30” height (for which I wanted to use for box jumps), it seemed a bit unstable. It could just be this particular box, but I think the fact that it’s so lightweight plays into its instability at the highest setting. At $179.99, I would expect a stable box all around. That said, you’d be fine to use the 30” side for other exercises that don’t require you to jump on top of it.

Ready to jump (pun intended) into today’s workout?? Read the description below and follow along with me on Instagram to see videos of these moves!

Plyo Box Total Body & Core with Power Intervals

[Plyo Box] Total Body & Core Workout with Power Intervals

What You’ll Need: a soft plyo box like this one from Power Guidance, or another sturdy box/surface that you’re comfortable jumping on and off of.
What You’ll Do:
you’ll do every strength exercise for 4 sets of 20 seconds on, 10 seconds rest. After 4 sets of strength, do the corresponding power move for 30 seconds at max effort, all-out intensity. Rest 30 seconds before starting the next strength move (if needed).
Total Time: 12 minutes

Strength 1: Elevated Glute Bridges (4 sets) - lie down on your back and place your feet on the edge of the plyo box, hands by your sides. (shown) Press through your feet and push your hips upward, squeezing your glutes as you press. Lower back down to start.

Power 1: Box Jumps (30 seconds) - Set the plyo box to the height that you are comfortable jumping (mine is set to 20”, but I definitely could have gone higher). Bend your knees and swing your arms back to load the jump, then propel yourself up to jump on top of the box. Land with your feet flat and bend your knees to soften the landing. Stand up, step back down (jump down if you’re comfortable), and jump up again. Keep jumping at maximal effort for 30 seconds. Trainer Tip: think about jumping by bringing your knees to your chest so you clear the box instead of bringing your heels back to your butt. You’ll get more height, and be able to land firmly on top.

- rest 30 seconds if needed -

Strength 2: Decline Push Ups (4 sets) - Get into a plank position with your feet elevated on the box, shoulders directly over wrists, abs engaged. From here, lower your chest toward the floor, and push back up. Trainer Tip: when your feet are elevated, there is a lot more emphasis on your abs and core to brace your back. Make sure you keep your back straight here and not let your hips dip down.

Power 2: Single Leg Hop Overs (30 seconds) - Start standing parallel to the plyo box, with the inside foot flat towards the middle of the box (shown). Push through your foot and hop laterally up and over the box (shown), landing on the opposite side (shown). Immediately push back up and over. Keep alternating for 30 seconds, max effort!

- rest 30 seconds if needed -

Strength 3: Balanced Hold to Boat Pose (4 sets) - sit on top of the plyo box so your weight is in the middle. Balance yourself and lower down so your body is in a hollow hold position, arms either overhead or in front of you (shown). From here, use your abs to pull yourself up to boat pose, bringing your knees toward your chest (shown). Trainer Tip: You can either keep your legs extended so your calves are parallel to the floor (harder), or bring your heels closer to the box (shown - easier).

Power 3: Squat Jump Taps (30 seconds) - Start sitting on the box edge, feet firmly planted (shown). From here, push through your legs and jump up as high as you can (shown). Come back down, tap your butt to the box, and jump back up again. Repeat jumps for 30 seconds all-out effort. Trainer Tip: the “taps” to the box should be just that - taps. You’re not sitting back all the way, so you should still feel pressure through your quads.

- rest 30 seconds if needed -

Strength 4: Figure 4 Knee Dips (4 sets, alternate legs each round) - Get into a plank position with your feet elevated on the box. Start with your right leg bent so your foot is placed on the inside crook of your left knee, making a figure 4 with your legs (shown). From here, bend your left knee down toward the floor (shown) as low as you’re comfortable without collapsing down off the box, then raise it back up. Alternate legs each round. You should feel this in your quads on the leg that’s moving.

Power 4: Lateral Hops (30 seconds) - Place your hands on the plyo box, with your weight shifted over to the left to start (shown). Jump up, shifting the weight onto your hands, and bring your heels toward your glutes (shown). Land on the right side (shown). Immediately jump back up and to the left, using the floor as kind of a “trampoline.” Keep going for 30 seconds as fast and high as you can.

Readers: chat with me! Do you use plyo boxes in your training? Which style do you prefer (soft vs. wood vs. platform)? Do you add in quick bursts of power/plyo in your training? I’m a HUGE fan! What are your favorite plyo box moves??

Disclosure: I was gifted this plyo box from Power Guidance in exchange for my review here. All opinions, photos, workout images, and product descriptions are my own, just like always! Thank you for supporting the brands that support this blog!

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Total Body Pyramid Bench Workout

Total Body Pyramid Bench Workout with RitFit

Disclosure: While I was compensated to write this post and I received this bench in exchange for my review, all opinions, images, and workouts are my own. Gotta have the disclaimer here, but I only promote the products I love. Thank you for supporting the brands that support this blog!

Hi friends! It’s been a good long while since I’ve posted a workout here on the blog. I’m in the home stretch of finishing my Master’s degree (MPH) and have started a new job in which I’ll transition to full time in August when I graduate (!). That plus teaching classes has kept me QUITE busy! But today, I’m pumped to bring you a new workout with a new piece of equipment: the RitFit foldable adjustable workout bench. The bench is awesome and easily adjustable, like most workout benches you see at the gym or club (you just pull the pin out and lock it in place in a matter of seconds). But I think the thing that sets this one apart from the others is its ability to fold up and be stored. It’ll fit under your bed, in a closet, in your trunk even. So, it’s a great piece of home gym equipment, especially for small spaces!

But let’s get to the workout! This one follows a pyramid structure starting with 10 reps of every exercise going down to 1. I like the pyramid format for a quick and effective sweat sesh, and you can make it more of a HIIT workout with minimal rest periods. Ready to give it a try??

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Total Body Pyramid Bench Workout

What You’ll Need: The RitFit adjustable bench (or another sturdy workout bench that can adjust), and a medium dumbbell or kettlebell (optional).
What You’ll Do:
Aways warm up before beginning any workout. After your warm up, start with 10 reps of every exercise. After 10, move down to 9 reps. Keep going down to 1 rep each. Aim for minimal rest. (View a video of the exercises on RitFit’s Instagram.) Fun challenge: time yourself and see how long it takes you to complete the pyramid. Try again in a week or two and see if you can beat your time!

- Start with the bench seat and back flat -

Elevated Push Ups - start with your feet on top of the bench and hands on the ground in a pike position. Keep a neutral spine, look back at the bench, and lower yourself down, bringing the crown of your head toward the floor. Push back up through your shoulders. Trainer Tip: you should feel this one more in the tops of your shoulders rather than your chest.

Bench Hop Overs - place your hands on the seat of the bench with your body off to one side. From here, hop over the bench back and forth, bringing your heels up to your glutes.

Side Plank Adductor Lifts (each side) - get into a side plank position on your forearm. Place the inside of your top foot on the bench, other leg resting on the ground. From here, engage your abs and press through your top foot engaging your inner thigh as you lift your bottom leg to meet the bench. Do # of reps on each side.

- Adjust the back of the bench to an upright position, 2 clicks up from neutral -

Reverse Hyperextensions - trust me, this bench is sturdy and stable enough to support you here! Place your hips over the top of the bench back (shown), hold onto the seat, and lower your legs down. From here, lift your legs and drive your heels upward, squeezing your glutes and hamstrings.

- Adjust the bench back down to neutral -

Feet-Elevated Burpees - these are tough, but SO fun! I find it easier to start with your feet on the bench in a plank. Then jump your feet off to meet your hands, and jump up, exploding through the legs. Just like a burpee, place your hands back down and jump your feet back on top of the bench.

- Lower the bench back to a decline position (all the way down) and raise the seat up all the way -

Declined Sit Ups - weight is optional here. I’m using a 10lb kettlebell, but feel free to add more weight, use a dumbbell, or just your body weight. If using a weight, keep it by your chest. Lie down on the bench and hook your feet under the foot hold. Engage your abs and lift your back off the bench to a seated position, and then lower back down.

Whew! How’d it go? I hope your whole body is thanking you! Now fold up and store that bench away, but not too far - I challenge you to try this workout again and see if you can get it done in a shorter amount of time!

Readers chat with me! Do you use a bench in your workouts? What are your favorite bench exercises? Have you ever done a pyramid workout before? If so, how do you like them? If not, do you think you’ll try this one out?

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Strength + Cardio Total Body Circuit Workout (no equipment!)

Strength + Cardio Total Body Circuit Workout | In Fitness and In Health

I'm really excited about sharing today's workout with you because this is a format I've been teaching for a while now at Life Time Athletic, and I LOVE it!  At Life Time, the class is called C9 Challenge, and we typically use dumbbells and resistance bands for equipment.  Today's workout is all bodyweight though, so it's PERFECT for those of you going on vacation who are in need of a killer sweat sesh with no equipment!

I love this format because it's over and done in about 45 minutes (with a warm up and cool down), and it goes by SO quickly!  The format goes as follows: 3 blocks of exercises, and in each block there are 3 moves targeting the upper body, lower body, and abs, all done for 1 minute each and repeated 3 times through.  So it's a 3x3x3 workout, if you will.  Each block ends with 1 minute of a cardio move before you go onto the next block.  You ready to bring the heat??  Let's get going!

Strength + Cardio Total Body Circuit Workout | In Fitness and In Health

Strength + Cardio Total Body Circuit Workout

What You'll Need: just a mat, a timer, and yourself!  And maybe a water bottle and sweat towel. ;)
What You'll Do: time each exercise for 1 minute, completing each circuit 3 times through.  After each circuit, complete the cardio move for that circuit (shown below) for 1 minute.  After the cardio burst, rest for 1 minute before moving onto the next circuit.

CIRCUIT 1 (x 3)

Regular Push Up to Pike Push Up - start in a regular push up position and do 1 push up (shown).  Then walk your hands back toward your feet so your body forms a V (shown).  Look back at your feet and do 1 pike push up, bringing the crown of your head to the floor.  Walk your hands back out to a regular push up position and do another regular push up concentrating on lowering your chest to the floor and keeping your entire body straight.

Curtsey Lunge to Step Back Lunge (alternate legs each round; last round = 30/30) - start with your left foot planted on the floor, and bring your right leg behind and back to the left in a curtsey lunge.  From here, staying low in the transition, bring both feet together and then step back in a regular lunge on the same leg (i.e. right leg steps back).  Keep that pattern going for the full minute.  Switch legs for the second minute, and the last minute do each side for 30 seconds.

10 Knee Presses + 10-second Hold - start in a supine position with your knees bent at a 90˚ angle, knees in line with hips (as shown).  Lift your upper back off the mat slightly, and press your hands into your knees and knees back into your hands to engage your abs.  Press and release 10 times, making sure to really engage your abs with each press.  After 10 presses, hold the press in for 10 seconds.  Keep that pattern going for the full minute.

- repeat circuit 1 two more times -

Circuit 1 Cardio: high low jabs (shown below) - start in a low squat facing one side and punch out to the side in a jab.  Propel yourself up in a high jump and as you rise, jab again.  Land back down in that squat and jab, and then jump up again and jab.  Do each side for 30 seconds, focusing on hard punches and recruiting your quads & glutes for the jumps.

high low jabs

CIRCUIT 2 (x 3)

Swimmer Pulls - start lying down on your stomach in a Superman position with legs and arms raised.  From here, extend both arms out straight (as shown), and then pull them back slowly so your shoulder blades come together.  Squeeze your back here for a second, then release back to starting position with arms out straight.  Keep the pulls and squeezes going for the full minute.

Lunge + Kick Sequence (alternate sides each round; last round = 30/30) - start standing and step forward with your right leg into a forward lunge (shown).  Get as low as you can.  Push yourself back up to standing and immediately do 1 front kick on the right leg (shown).  Then step out to the right into side lunge (shown).  Push yourself back up and immediately kick that leg out into a side kick (shown).  Now step your right foot back into a backward lunge (shown), push back up, and do 1 back kick on the right (shown).  Keep the pattern going on the right leg for the full minute, then switch to the left for second round and do each side for 30 seconds in the last round.

Birddog Plank + Crunch (30/30) - start in a high plank extending your right arm and left leg out straight in birddog position (shown).  Hold this position for 2 seconds, actively engaging your abs.  From here, bring your elbow and knee in to meet in the middle, exhaling and bracing your abs at tight as possible.  Extend back out without letting the right hand and left foot to touch the ground.  Hold the plank for another 2 seconds, then bring your elbow and knee in together.  Keep the motion going for 30 seconds on one side, then switch for the next 30.  Take it slow!

- repeat circuit 2 two more times -

Circuit 2 Cardio: Up & Over Jump Lunges (shown below) - start in a low lunge on one side, reaching your hands toward the ground (as shown).  From here, push off your legs to get height in the jump, and reach up and over to the other side, landing in a lunge on your other leg (shown).  Keep alternating jumps side to side for 1 minute, focusing on loading the jump, then exploding upwards. 

alternating jump lunges

CIRCUIT 3 (x 3)

Tricep Dip Toe Reach - start with your feet and hands flat on the ground, butt raised slightly off your mat (shown).  Bend your elbows to lower yourself down so your butt touches the mat.  Push back up to starting position, and extend one arm and the opposite leg to meet in the middle, reaching for your toes (shown).  Go back down in a tricep dip, and as you come up, extend the other arm and leg up.  Keep that pattern going for the full minute.

Single Leg Glute Bridge - start supine with one leg raised in the air, the other foot flat on your mat, arms by your sides.  Pushing through your heel, raise your hips up as high as you can, lifting your butt off your mat, and squeeze your glutes at the top.  Lower back down to starting position.  I'll give you the option here of either doing each side for 30 seconds, or staying on one side for the full minute, then switching for round 2, and 30/30 in round 3.  Up to you!

Toe Reach to Leg Lower - staying in that supine position, raise your legs up straight, bottoms of your feet toward the ceiling, arms extended straight upwards as shown.  From here, reach for your toes lifting your upper back and shoulder blades off your mat as much as possible.  Lower yourself back down slowly, and while keeping your arms extended upwards, lower your legs toward the floor (but don't let your feet touch the ground!).  Raise them back up to start, and reach for your toes again.  Keep that pattern going for each minute.  Feel those abs!

- repeat circuit 3 two more times -

Circuit 3 Cardio: Side to Side Burpees (shown below) - start on one side of your mat and do 1 full burpee.  When you come back up to jump, simply hop over the mat and land on the other side.  Do 1 full burpee here, and hop back over to the other side.  Keep 'em going as quick as you can for the full minute.

side to side burpees

Woo baby!  How'd that workout go for you??  Are you feelin' the burn?  I love this circuit format because it really pushes you, and that cardio burst at the end is always a killer.  I hope you enjoyed the workout today, and if you haven't yet entered the GIVEAWAY from yesterday's post, make sure you do it before midnight tonight!! 

Wear It To Heart Leggings

Wearing: Teal Adder leggings & Mahalo bra c/o Wear It To Heart; Lululemon tank; New Balance sneakers

Readers: chat with me!  Do you add bodyweight workouts to your fitness regimen during the week?  How often do you work out at home or on the go and need a no equipment workout to bring with you?  How was your weekend?