When it comes to convenient, inexpensive workout equipment, nothing compares with your own body. It's free, after all, and ensures that you can get a heart-pounding, muscle-pumping workout just about anywhere.
Personal trainer and fitness expert Ashley Borden has designed this efficient, full-body workout that's well-suited to the great indoors. All it takes: 25 minutes, a little floor space, a mat and your own body weight to work a variety of muscle groups and raise your heart rate.
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Do: 3 rounds of the warm-up exercises, followed by 5 rounds of the main routine. End with the 2 cooldown stretches.
Move 1: Cat-Cow Stretch
- Get down on your hands and knees, wrists in line with your shoulders and knees directly underneath your hips.
- Inhale as you lift the crown of your head and tailbone toward the ceiling and push your heart ahead of you.
- Hold for a few seconds.
- Release while exhaling, slowly moving the crown of your head toward the floor while lowering your hips toward the floor in tandem, rounding up your shoulder blades toward the ceiling.
- Reverse positions and repeat 5 times.
Move 2: Downward Dog Pedal Stretch
- Assume the Downward Dog position by placing your feet shoulder-width apart and bending at the waist to place your hands in line with your feet on the floor, forming your body into an upside-down V.
- Raise your heels off the ground and bend one knee in at a 90-degree angle toward the floor.
- Resume the V position to rest a beat.
- Repeat with the other leg.
- Repeat on both sides twice more. This helps release tension in the calves and hamstrings.
Move 3: High-Lunge Core Rotation
- Stand with your feet together.
- Step your left foot back into a deep lunge until your right knee is at a 90-degree angle. Support your back leg with the ball of your foot.
- Lengthen your torso and bend forward so that it's on the inside of your front thigh;. Support yourself with the tips of your fingers on the floor.
- Reach your elbow down to the floor to deepen the stretch in your hips.
- Twist your torso to the left, raising your left arm up toward the sky while keeping your right arm down.
- Switch sides so that your left leg is in front.
- Repeat four more times on each side.
Move 1: Man Maker
- Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart.
- Drop down into plank position.
- Bend one elbow and raise one arm to a 90-degree angle (as if you were holding a dumbbell) while supporting yourself with the other.
- Lower your hand back down and raise the other arm in the same way.
- Place your hand back down on the ground and jump forward, raising yourself into a squat with your hands in fists near your shoulders.
- Return to standing, raising your arms straight up above your head, hands still in fists.
- Repeat 5 times.
Move 2: Plank With Alternating Toe Taps
- Assume a high plank.
- Lift your right leg slightly and slide it out to the side until your legs form a narrow V.
- Tap that toe to the ground then bring your legs back together into a plank.
- Do this move again with the left leg and continue to alternate.
- Do 10 reps on each side to engage your arms, shoulders, chest, core and legs.
Move 3: Single-Leg Glute Bridge
- Lie flat on your back. Place your arms at your sides with the palms down. Bend both knees with your feet flat on the ground.
- Bend your left knee into your chest and flex your right foot.
- Raise your hips off the ground by pushing through your right heel.
- Raise and lower your hips, hugging your knee in the whole time.
- Do 15 reps on each side.
Move 4: Hip Drop From Side Plank
- Lie on your left side with your torso raised and supported by your left forearm, bent at the elbow.
- With your right arm either around your waist or extended to the ceiling, keep your feet and legs straight and stacked on top of each other. Keep your head in line with your spine.
- Raise your hips into a side forearm plank. Keeping your core tight, lower your hips so that they hover just about the ground.
- Continue lowering and raising for 10 reps on each side.
Move 1: Glute Bridge
- Lie flat on the floor with your arms by your sides and your knees bent with feet planted and toes turned out slightly.
- Pressing through your feet, begin to lift your back off the floor, one vertebrae at a time.
- When you reach the top, hold for a beat.
- Slowly lower back down to the start the same way, rolling your spine out along the floor.
- Do 5 of these in a row.
Move 2: Pigeon Pose
- From all fours, extend your legs out behind you into plank.
- Bend your right knee in toward your chest and place it on the ground near your right hand with your foot pointing toward your left side.
- Lean forward on your elbows until your chest is above your right leg. This gives your hip a deep stretch, says Borden.
- Hold the stretch for 1 minute.
- Slowly slide out of the stretch and repeat on the other side.
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