I love monthly workout challenges. It is a GREAT way to get in more physical activity on a regular basis and kick start any other workout you are doing regularly. For January, I developed a quick and easy cardio challenge to get that heart pumping.
The challenge is below. Do each exercise for 90 seconds without stopping (should take 7 1/2 minutes). Aim for doing this challenge at least 5 times per week during the month of January. If you do not have time for an additional workout one day, repeat the circuit 2 times for a 15 minute workout burst.
Most of the exercises you probably already recognize, but below is a brief rundown in case you need a refresher:
- Jumping Jacks: Stand upright with arms by your side. As you jump your legs out, wider than your hips, swing your arms overhead (keeping your arms straight). Jump back to your starting position. Keep going for 90 minutes! If jumping is too hard on your joints, just step out your feet instead.
- Invisible Jump Ropes: This one is simple. Act like you have a jump rope in your hand and move your hands as you jump over the invisible rope. You can mix this one up if you get bored by taking one leg at a time and then switching legs. You can do a double jump or even jump side to side. Your call!
- Jump Squats: First, choose between a regular squat (if you want to target the quads mostly) or a sumo squat (if you also want to target those inner thighs). Start with a squat, making sure your knees do not go past your toes, and as you come back up to your starting position- add a jump. Repeat and continue for the 90 second duration.
- Ski Jumps: Stand up straight with your arms bent in front of you like you are holding onto ski poles. Make a slight bend in your knees as you pull your arms in even more (to prepare) and jump to the right with your legs glued together the whole time. Repeat and jump to the left. You should feel like you are on the slopes!
- Star Jumps: This exercise is like a jumping jack in the air. You will prepare with both legs together and slightly bend your knees. As you jump, make an X with your body. Your legs will be kicked out to the side and your arms up in a V. These can get tough so if you cannot keep up the full 90 second duration, take a quick break and jump back in or step instead of jump.
2014 will be our fittest year yet!