Even if you have the best workout plan, you won’t see results if you only hit it once or twice a week. What you need is an effective, efficient routine you can be consistent with. The more regular you are with your workouts, the less intense each session needs to be. It’s that simple. You don’t need to have an expensive gym membership or new workout equipment…so there’s no excuse.
If you are looking for a quick pre-work toning routine that will hit every part of your body, try this strength-training set four times a week. It is so precise and fast, that you can even master these moves on your lunch break.
Tips to Know Before You Start:
When you are short on time but want results, it’s important to focus on the quality of each move. To avoid injury, keep your posture and movement in mind for each sequence. and get the most out of your workouts. Engage your core during every movement, inhale on the way down, exhale on the way up, and keep your tailbone tucked.
To avoid tearing a muscle or being fatigued, warm up with a light five-minute jog to get the body and muscles loose. Grab a set of light weights anywhere between 3 to 10 lbs depending on what “light” feels like to you and what your body is used to. It’s important to remember that everyone works out at a different pace. Don’t push yourself too hard, too fast.
Move 1: Alternating Reverse Lunge With Bicep Curl
Hold dumbbells by your sides with your feet hip-width apart, and do not lock your knees. Step back with your left foot, and bend both knees to lower until your right knee is bent at least 90 degrees. At the same time, curl the dumbbells up to your chest. Reverse the movement to the start position. That is one rep. Alternate legs for 20 reps, 10 on each leg. This move activates your biceps, legs, glutes, and core.
Check out this great example of the reverse lunge!
Move 2: Deadlifts
Start by holding your dumbbells at your side and knees slightly bent. Slowly bend at your hip joint and lower the weights as far as possible keeping your back straight. Keep looking forward, not at the ground, to avoid rounding your back. You should keep the barbell close to your legs, almost touching them, then squeeze your glutes to pull yourself up at a quicker pace than it took to bend down. It is key to keep your back straight and go slow on the way down. Complete 15 reps. This total body workout will also help you achieve great posture.
Here’s Crossfit’s tutorial video of a deadlift.
Move 3: Superman
Lie down on your stomach with your arms fully extended overhead and your legs straight out behind you. Engaging your core, lift both arms and both legs up at the same time while looking straight ahead. Contract and squeeze your glutes at the top of the movement and hold for 2 seconds. Return to the starting position and repeat 15 times. You will strengthen lower back, core, and glutes in this one movement.
This video shows the technique to keep in mind for the Superman move.
Move 4: Pushups
Pushups are never overrated. Get into position on your hands and knees with your hands slightly wider than shoulder-width apart. Your feet should be set in a way that feels comfortable for you, whether you are on your knees or toes. Keep your body in one straight line, with your core engaged and your gaze slightly in front of you. At the top of your push-up, your arms should be straight and support your weight. Complete 12 to 15 reps. Don’t feel ready to complete a full push-up? Begin on your knees, and as it gets easier, progress to your toes.
If you are hesitant about your push-up form, this video answers all your questions.
Move 5: Wall Sit
This is the exercise that moves with you. Wall sits are the perfect move for strengthening your legs, core, and back. And, it can be executed almost anywhere — like waiting in line for brunch. Stand against a wall and make sure your back is flat against it. Place your feet shoulder-width apart and slowly bend your knees until they are at a 90º angle. Let your arms hang loosely at your side, or put them on your hips. Hold for 1 minute increments and repeat 5 times with 30-second breaks in between. This workout will strengthen your glutes, calves, hamstrings and other muscles that may be overlooked in other workouts.
Check out this lesson on wall-sits.
What quick workouts do you swear by?