Are you looking for a powerful workout but short on time? Well this workout can strengthen your core and burn fat – and it can do it all in just 6 minutes. This simple workout can be modified for bodies of all performance levels. And since body weight and a good pair of shorts are the only thing you’ll need for this workout, you can spare yourself the expense of any awkward gym equipment.
Move 1: High Knees
This move may look easy, but step up your form and your legs will be burning with fitness delight. Form is key here because the more muscles you have engaged, the higher those knees will pump and the more calories you’ll burn.
Maximize the benefits here by using your lower abs to fuel your leg movements. You want to pair strong arms and relaxed shoulders with a tight, engaged core. And while we might think that more movement equals more benefits, it’s really about getting those knees as high as able while engaging as many muscles as possible. Just remember to land land softly on those toes to reduce the impact on the knees.
If you need to go even easier on the knees then simply march in place. Implement the steps outlined above and you’ll get the same muscle-burning benefits.
Move 2: Squat Cross
When it comes to getting lovely legs and a perky derriere, the good old-fashioned squat always delivers. But this variation of the squat won’t just build a beautiful booty. Thanks to the alternating arm and leg movements, it will even help strengthen that brain. How’s THAT for a workout?! To do this move, you want to pull your belly in tight and lift your head and chest up. Focus on pushing your weight into your heels so that the glutes and hamstrings are activated. As you squat down, reach your opposite hand to it’s opposite ankle. Then alternate this so your other hand is now reaching towards its opposite ankle. Continue to alternate these movements as you squat down so your thighs are parallel to the floor.
Want to step up the intensity? You can make those thighs burn even deeper by going into a deeper and wider squat. As you come up to stand, take it slow so that you can really focus on tightening those glutes and bringing on that fire.
Move 3: Tricep Push-Up
This Chaturanga push-up puts the triceps to work rather than the chest and uses the knees for extra support.
Start by getting on your knees and positioning the wrists under the shoulders. Keep the elbows in close to engage the triceps and the core pulled in. Hold this form as you lower your upper body to the floor. As the ribs graze the floor the arms slowly push the body back up into starting position.
Itchin’ for an even better sweat? Challenge your upper body strength by starting in high plank instead of on your knees. Keep the core strong to avoid rocking of the hips and you have yourself a full force tricep push-up that will bring on the arm definition just in time for summer.
Move 4: Plank Walkout
Drop into plank position with shoulders relaxed, forearms parallel, and palms flat on the ground. Look down at the ground while keeping the neck in line with the spine. Hold the arms and belly strong and without shifting the upper body, step one leg out to the side. Tap the big toe to the floor and then bring the leg back in to repeat this same sequence on the other side.
The wider you step, the more you work the external and internal obliques. The trick to this is to go as wide as is comfortable while keeping a slow and controlled movement. Imagine you’re balancing a cocktail tray full of your favorite overpriced mix drinks on your back and your posture will lean towards perfection.
Hungry for a challenge? Bring on the muscle power by swapping stepping for jumping. The feet start in together, then jump out like a jumping jack and come back in to start it all again.
Move 5: Football Run
This move is great for getting the heart rate up, but work it right and you’ll have those legs feeling the heat. And while this move may look like a spastic run with a bad back, don’t be fooled. Posture is very important here.
As you run in place, hold yourself up high on the balls of your feet. Legs should be low and feet spaced wide apart to challenge the glutes, thighs, and calves. As the feet pump up and down in a low run, strong arms should move along in rhythm.
That’s it! Your daily workout is now complete! Do each move for 30 seconds followed by a 5 second rest. Repeat this sequence twice and you’re guaranteed to need a towel to clean up a beautifully-sweaty mess.
So find yourself a good sweat towel and shake up some liquid superfood and make it happen!
Krystal Nielson is an NASM Certified Personal Trainer, a NASM MMA Conditioning Specialist, a Nationally-Qualified Bikini Competitor, a Sponsored Athlete and a Health and Fitness Coach. Her background lies in strength and flexibility and she works with clients as young as 18 and as experienced as 80. Connect with her on Facebook and Instagram to stay up to date on her awesome life as a coach and trainer.
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