20-Minute Whole Body AMRAP Workout

20-Minute Whole Body AMRAP Workout

Hi Everyone!  Holy moly it's been a while since I last posted.  If you read my big life update a few weeks ago, you'll know I was thinking about applying for graduate school to get my Master's in Public Health.  Well, I decided to take the plunge!  My application for the first part of the program - a Certificate in Public Health - is due this Friday, so I've been busy with that these past few weeks.

But I'm excited to be back and to share this workout with you today!  These exercises are all done on a plyo box, and while they may look easy to start out, the AMRAP (as many rounds as possible) style of this workout makes it challenging.  Ready to get to it and challenge yourself? Keep reading for the details and let's get goin'!

20-Minute Whole Body AMRAP (on a Plyo Box)

20-Minute Whole Body AMRAP Workout

What You'll Need: a sturdy plyo box at about knee height, a non-slip exercise mat (to put underneath the box to prevent sliding if on a smooth surface), and a timer.
What You'll Do: set your timer for 20 minutes, and go through as many rounds of the exercises as you can in that time, starting with exercise #1.  Remember to do 5 box jumps between each move. Note: if you're on a smooth surface like a hardwood floor, place a non-slip exercise mat underneath the plyo box to prevent the box from sliding forward during your jumps.

10 Incline Push Ups - get into a push up position with your hands gripping the outside edges of the box.  Keeping your abs engaged and spine aligned, lower your chest to the box in a push up.  Push back up to start.  Do 10 reps.

5 Box Jumps - between each strength exercise you'll do 5 box jumps.  Start with the box in front of you. Squat down, bending your knees and bringing your arms straight back by your sides to load the jump.  From here, swing your arms up and jump up onto the box, tucking your knees up to your chest to clear it (as opposed to bringing your heels back towards your butt).  Stand up fully, then step down off the box and reset to load the next jump.  Do 5 jumps total.  Trainer Tip: please remember to STEP off the box, not jump down.  This avoids unnecessary force on your lower body and decreases risk for injury.

  • Alternate Exercise for Box Jumps - if box jumps are a bit too much for you, take it down a notch and start in a squat, then step up onto the box, stand, and step back down into a squat. If you do this style, alternate which leg leads each set (e.g. lead with the right leg for your first set of 5, then the left on your next set, then right... so on and so forth).

10 Lunge Step Ups w/ Knee Drive (each leg) - start in a lunge facing the plyo box with just enough room between to step up onto the box.  From the lunge position, take your back leg and plant it firmly on top of the box, stepping up as you do, driving your other knee toward your chest in a fluid motion.  Reverse the move to step down off the box and back into a lunge on the same leg you started on.  Repeat for 10 lunges on one leg before switching to the other.

- 5 Box Jumps - 

10 Straight Leg Raises - start in a seated position on the edge of the plyo box, legs extended out straight, hands grasping the sides of the box for stability.  Lean back slightly to engage your abs, keeping your back flat.  From here, lift your legs straight up off the ground, forming a V with your body.  Lower them back down to the floor.  Do 10 lifts.

- 5 Box Jumps -

10 Up & Under Planks (each side) - start in a plank position with your right arm propped up on the plyo box, left arm tucked underneath you.  From here, rotate your body into a side plank on your right arm, reaching your left arm up toward the ceiling and turning your head upwards to look at your hand.  Reverse the move back down into the plank, tucking your arm underneath you and engaging your abs as you do.  Keep going for 10 reps on the right before switching to the left.

 - 5 Box Jumps - 

10 Knee to Elbow Planks - start in a plank position on your hands with your feet propped up on the plyo box.  From here, alternate bringing your knees out to the side and up to meet your elbow, focusing on engaging your obliques and keeping your shoulders over your wrists.  Do 10 reps total (5 each side).

- 5 Box Jumps - 

Keep going!  Remember, this is an AMRAP workout, so get through as many rounds of these exercises as you can in 20 minutes!

Readers: chat with me!  What's going on in everyone's lives lately??  How are your workouts/training sessions going?  Do you incorporate plyo boxes into your routine?  How about AMRAP workouts?  Love 'em or hate 'em?  Any readers out there with an MPH or currently in school?  Any advice?

30-Minute Total Body Workout w/ Walking Poles (+ GIVEAWAY!)

30-Minute Total Body Workout w/ BungyPump Walking Poles

I'm super excited to bring you today's workout!  When BungyPump reached out to me to review their suspension walking poles, my immediate reaction was yes absolutely because they're so different than any piece of exercise equipment I've ever used.  Of course, they're supposed to be used to add more resistance (and therefore more muscle activation and calorie burn) during walking activities, but I found myself immediately coming up with ways to incorporate them into a workout.  So, below is a total body circuit routine with a few bouts of cardio mixed in.  AND you guys have a chance to win a pair of BungyPump Walking Poles for yourself!

First, here's a bit more about them. BungyPump walking poles are Swedish-made with a built-in suspension system that will add 4, 6, or 10 kilos of resistance (9, 13, and 22 pounds respectively) to your walking routine.  They have an ergonomically shaped handle with a hand strap for security, and the height of the poles is adjustable to suit your needs.  You can also adjust whether or not the poles are locked, meaning they can be used sans resistance if you prefer.

BungyPump Walking Poles

The workout I created with these poles is pretty versatile, so if you find yourself out on a walk and want to add some more activity, you absolutely can.  Take the exercises individually as they are, or do the full workout in its entirety for a great calorie burn and total body sweat sesh.  Keep reading for the details of the workout and make sure to enter the raffle to win a pair!

30-Minute Total Body Workout w/ Walking Poles

30-Minute Total Body Workout w/ BungyPump Walking Poles

What You'll Need: a pair of BungyPump Walking poles (WIN A PAIR below!) and an exercise mat.
What You'll Do: go through each round 3 times, doing each exercise for 1 minute, focusing on one major muscle group per round.

Round 1: Legs (x 3)

Cardio: Jump Squats - start standing with the poles vertical in each hand, no resistance put on the poles yet.  Squat down as low as you can, and then explode up into a vertical jump, pressing the poles down as you propel yourself up into the air.  Land back down softly, letting the poles release back to starting position.  Repeat the jump squats quickly for 1 minute.

Curtsey Lunge Pulses + Hold (each side) - start in the same standing position you were in for the jump squats, holding a pole in each hand.  Step back into a curtsey lunge on your right side (by taking your left foot and stepping behind and to the right).  Maintaining the lunge position with the poles pressed down, pulse the lunge with little movements up and down for 30 seconds, letting the poles move up and down with you.  After those 30 seconds are up, stay down in a low lunge for the next 30 seconds, then switch sides.

Squat Hold (30s back/30s front) - start in a low squat position with one of the poles placed behind your knees.  Squat down just low enough to hold the pole in place (but be careful to not go so low that you're resting on your heels).  Hold that position with your hands outstretched for 30 seconds.  Then, maintaining the squat position, grab the pole and hold it out in front of you for the next 30 seconds.

- Repeat round 1 two more times - 

Round 2: Arms (x 3)

Cardio: Plank Jack to Frog Hop - lay the poles down parallel to each other on the floor and start in a plank position with your hands at the top of the poles and feet on in the inside (see image). From here, jump your feet to the outside of the poles (plank jack), then jump them up to your hands (frog hop), keeping your hands planted the whole time.  Reverse the move to jump your feet back to the outside of the poles, and then back in. Continue the pattern quickly for 1 minute, keeping your abs engaged and shoulders in line over your wrists.

Walking Push Ups - keep the poles in the same parallel position as the cardio move above.  Start in a push up position on the left-most side of the poles.  Do 1 push up.  Now step your right hand and right foot to the right, over the first pole to the inside "lane" (left side follows so you're now in a push up position on the inside of the poles).  Do another push up.  Then continue to walk yourself over to the right-most side of the poles and do another push up here.  Reverse the move to walk back over to the left, stopping to do 1 push up in each "lane".  Continue the pattern for 1 minute.

Chest Squeeze + Pulse + Hold (10/10/10 x 2) - start standing with one pole held parallel to the floor, palms facing up toward the ceiling, hands at the ends of the pole.  Using the resistance of the pole, slowly press inward keeping your arms straight.  Once pressed in as far as you can, slowly release the pole back to starting position.  Do 10 slow presses, then hold the pole in and do 10 slow pulses (tiny presses).  Once 10 pulses are done, press the pole in as far as you can again and hold that position for 10 seconds.  Do this twice through.

- Repeat round 2 two more times -

Round 3: Abs (x 3)

Cardio: Lateral Bounding Hops - lay the poles down end to end to form a line on the floor. Starting at one end of the line on one side, swing your arms down by your sides, bend your knees and jump over to the other side, trying to cover as much distance as you can.  Land softly and immediately load the next jump, then hop over to the other side of the line.  Continue the bounding hops down and back for 1 minute.

V-ups w/ Chest Squeeze - start laying down on your back, holding one pole in your hands overhead, pole relaxed with an overhand grip.  From here, do a V-up by engaging your abs to bring your legs and upper body off the floor while simultaneously bringing the pole up overhead to reach out in front of you, squeezing your hands together as you raise.  Reverse the move, lowering your body back down to the floor and releasing tension on the pole as you lower.  Keep going for 1 minute.

Raised Leg Wall Sit - alright, fair warning: these ones are HARD.  I don't expect you to hold this position for the full minute, so do what you can, take breaks, and get back into it when you're ready.  Start in a seated position, lower and middle back flat against a wall, legs bent with heels touching the floor.  Your feet are flexed, balancing one pole on top of your ankles (see picture). Place your hands on the ground between your legs and press.  Lift your legs up off the floor as high as you can, engaging your abs to do so.  Hold that position for as long as you can, taking breaks when you need to.  Keep going for 1 minute.

- Repeat round 3 two more times - 

And now for the fun part...

WIN A PAIR of BungyPump Walking Poles!

BungyPump Walking Poles Giveaway!

That's right!  You can win a pair for yourself!  The poles themselves range in price depending on the resistance you choose, but the ones seen here (the Walkathlon line) are priced at $135, so I'm excited to be able to offer a pair for free to a lucky reader!  This is a raffle-style giveaway (entry options are below), and the winner will be announced May 17th!  Good luck to you all and I hope you enjoy the workout!

[Update] 15% off BungyPump Poles with code INFITINHEALTH

The giveaway might be over (congratulations to Sonya!), but I'm not leaving you guys empty handed.  Use code INFITINHEALTH to get 15% off ANY BungyPump pole set!  Click here to check out the different styles, and make sure to check back in and let me know how you like them!

Readers: chat with me!  Do you do a lot of active/outdoor walking?  Do you use walking poles?  Have you ever "thought outside the box" when it comes to exercise equipment (if so, what have you used)?  What exercises would you do with the poles if you won them?

Resistance Band Total Body Workout with Isometric Holds

Resistance Band Total Body Workout w/ Isometric Holds

I'm excited to bring you this total body workout today because a lot of people I know are traveling and this workout is GREAT for hotel rooms and when you're away from home.  Resistance bands are just as good (if not better) than dumbbells in my opinion, and they're also just about the best piece of fitness equipment you can realistically pack in a suitcase.  I'll be upfront, though - this workout doesn't involve many isolated abdominal exercises.  So if you're on the go or away from home and want a good ab burn to go along with this workout, I'd recommend this one and/or this one (you don't need any equipment for either).

Back to today's workout, though, there are 3 rounds of 2 exercises each.  You'll go through each round 3 times, doing each exercise for 1 minute, and holding a position where the band is taut (isometric hold) for 30 seconds.  Keep reading for the workout details, and make sure to save this one to that workout Pinterest board for when you're traveling! 

Resistance Band Total Body Workout w/ Isometric Holds

Resistance Band Total Body Workout w/ Isometric Holds

What You'll Need: a heavy resistance band (I used 30lbs), an exercise mat, and some floor space.
What You'll Do: start with round 1 and do each exercise for 1 minute followed by a 30-second isometric hold (explained below for each).  Do each round 3 times through before moving onto the next, trying only to take breaks between rounds if you need to.

Round 1 (x3)

Rowing Sit Ups (1 minute) + Row Hold (30 seconds) - lie down on the floor with the band wrapped securely around your feet (shown below), holding the handles in each hand by your sides. From here, perform a full sit up while simultaneously pulling the band handles to reach your sides, in a rowing motion.  Keep your shoulders down and focus on bringing your shoulder blades together in the row.  Slowly reverse the move and lower yourself back down to the floor.  Continue the sit ups for 1 minute.  After 1 minute, hold the upright row position for 30 seconds.  Trainer Tip: if you want more abdominal engagement during the hold, lean back slightly to engage them, keeping the band pulled in towards your sides.

Resistance Band secure foot loop

 Secure Foot Loop (above): start by wrapping the middle of the band over the tops of your feet.  Loop it around the outside of your feet, and bring the handles through on the inside.  This prevents the band from slipping off your toes when you pull (which has happened to me, and boy does it hurt!).

Resisted Push Ups (1 minute) + Push Up Hold (30 seconds) - wrap the band around your back, between your arms and your sides (so it's not rubbing against your arms).  Get into a push up position on the floor with your hands flat, holding the band down by the handles.   Do as many push ups as you can for 1 minute.  After 1 minute, hold the lowered push up position for 30 seconds.  Trainer Tip: you can do these from your knees as well, just remember to keep your spine aligned - no butts in the air!

Round 2 (x3)

Donkey Kicks (1 minute) + Straight Leg Hold (30 seconds) [L then R] - get into an all-fours position with a band handle looped on your left foot, holding the band tight in your left hand, excess on your right.  From here, kick your leg back pulling the band, keeping your foot flexed, and squeezing your glutes.  Bring your leg back down, bending your knee toward your chest.  Do 1 minute of kicks on the left leg, then immediately hold that same leg out straight for 30 seconds. Repeat on the right leg.

Squat Abductor Raises (1 minute) + Lateral Hold (30 seconds) [L then R] - place the resistance band under your feet holding the handles in each hand.  Perform a squat.  Come back to standing and lift your left leg out to the side, keeping it straight and your foot facing forward.  Squat back down, and repeat on the other side.  Continue alternating sides between squats for 1 minute.  After 1 minute, hold your left leg out to the side for 30 seconds, then repeat on the right.

Round 3 (x3)

Biceps Curls (1 minute) + 90˚ Hold (30 seconds) - start standing with the band underneath your feet, holding the handles in each hand by your sides.  Perform a biceps curl, bringing the band handles up towards your shoulders.  Slowly lower the band back down.  Keep curling for 1 minute.  After a minute, hold the handles up, elbows bent at 90˚, for 30 seconds.

Straight Leg Kickbacks (1 minute) + Hold (30 seconds) [L then R] - loop one handle around your left foot, holding the band tight by your left hip.  Keeping the band held at your hip the whole time, lift your leg straight back as high as you can.  Keep the lifts going for 1 minute, then hold your leg up for 30 seconds.  Once done with the left, repeat on the right.

Caption This Blooper!

Because it's Monday and we could all use a good laugh at the start of the week, I'm leaving you with this precious gem of a workout pic blooper...

workout blooper

Readers: chat with me!  Do you use resistance bands in your training?  What are your favorite exercises?  And because I don't take myself all that seriously, let's have some fun - caption the blooper pic above!  Happy Monday!