It’s hard for me to think of this workout as the last workout until Christmas. Since the gym membership happened to me, I’ve been spending good five days in gym training hard every part of my body and also doing 1 cardio day a week. The results are amazing even after 2 months of training. I can take heavier weights and go higher reps. My bicep is no longer an invisible thin strip of muscle, it gets fuller with every workout and sometimes a vein pops out on my right arm – this is all so unbelievably amazing!
But unfortunately (or fortunately in some other sense) we’re going to Galway for the weekend and then we’ll probably spend the last days till Christmas and the Christmas itself with family and there will be no gym. At all. Well, of course we could go to the leisure centre in Portarlington, but I feel it’d be like cheating, because I love my gym. It’s not the best, but I love it! So what do you do if it’s your last workout before a break and all of the planned split workouts are done? Right! You have fun with a fat blasting circuit training! I promise it will make your heart pump hard, it will make you sweat, it will make you hot, it will make you breathless!There are 7 short exercises with no (or extremely little) rest between them. Then you can take a minute or two to catch your breath and continue for the second round. Two to four rounds are good. Each round took me 5 minutes to complete, so you’ll be done in less than 25 minutes, but it doesn’t mean you wouldn’t feel that burn and heaviness in the whole body!
Note: Choose free weights so that they are heavy enough to challenge you, but not that heavy that you cannot complete the exercise. I’ll indicate the weight I used for every exercise.
Don’t have the equipment I used and need an alteration? Or are you not on the same level of fitness yet and need a simpler version (there’s no reason to be ashamed of that, by the way)? The weight you use (if any at all) is completely up to you. You choose the level that is challenging to you, but that you can complete.
Why is this workout good? It works your entire body. It challenges you. It makes your heart work harder. It speeds up your metabolism, making you burn more fat throughout the day.
My pre-Christmas Pure Sweat workout:
1. Dumbbell step ups – 10 reps on each leg (8 kg dumbbells in each hand).
Stand before a sturdy bench or a step platform with dumbbells in your hands, step with your right leg onto a platform, bring the left leg up, raising your left knee as high as possible while keeping balance. Return the left leg to the floor and do 9 more reps, then switch legs.
Make it simpler: Choose lighter weight or no weight at all. Just make sure that the rhythm you go with is fast enough to get your heart rate up.
2. Bent-over dumbbell rows – 10 reps (8 kg).
Stand with your legs hip-width apart with two dumbbells in your hands, bend over keeping your back straight as far as you can (about 90 degrees is perfect), keep your arms down with weight. Inhale, and with an exhalation pull dumbbells to your chest, bending at your elbows. Let the arms back down on inhalation. Repeat for 9 more reps.
Make it simpler: Choose lighter weight. If you don’t have dumbbells, you can grab anything you have at hand: water bottles, filled bags with handles – anything that works is fine.
3. Glute Bridge – 15 reps (20 kg plate)
Lie on floor with your knees bent, feet on floor, holding a barbell or a plate on your hips (a dumbbell can be used as well, if that’s all you have). Inhale and with an exhalation lift your buttocks, reaching as high as possible. Return to the floor with inhalation.
Make it simpler: Choose lighter weight or do without weight at all. You can also put your feet up on a bench, sofa or platform for a variation, or do a single-leg bridge by keeping one leg up.
4. Push ups – 10 reps.
Start in a plank position, holding your core tight, back straight. Lower your body bending at elbows, making sure that your entire body is straight and parallel to the floor. Go as low as you can.
Make it simpler: Do them on your knees.
5. Plate twist – 10 reps each side (5 kg plate)
A variation of Russian twists: sit on floor with your knees bent. Hold a plate in your hands, lift the feet off the floor and rotate your core to the sides, touching floor on each side with a plate.
Make it simpler: Choose a lighter weight object or do without it. Keep your feet on floor, if needed.
6. Sumo deadlift – 20 reps (20 kg – barbell only)
Stand in a very wide stance, holding a barbell or a kettlebell in your hands. Keeping your back straight, lower the weight past your knees (it shouldn’t necessarily touch the floor), bending your knees in a sumo squat. Get back up by first extending your legs, then straightening your back.
Make it simpler: Use a kettlebell or a dumbbell if you don’t have access to barbells. A heavy bag will do for home workouts.
7. Alternate bicep curl – 5 reps (8 kg dumbbells)
Stand straight with weights in both hands. Keeping elbows close to your body curl the right arm, bringing the dumbbell to your shoulder, then lower it slowly and repeat with the left arm.
Make it simpler: Use lighter dumbbells or water bottles or bags.
Workouts shouldn’t necessarily be complicated in terms of equipment used. Not all of us can access to a gym or own home gym equipment. Make your imagination work. People can get fit without owning a single piece of equipment. A good workout is the one that makes you feel you have worked out. The only bad workout is the one that didn’t happen.
Disclaimer: I am not a doctor and not a fitness instructor (yet), but only a huge fitness enthusiast. If you have any health problems or concerns, consult with your doctor prior to undertaking any workout posted anywhere.
All in all, this workout was awesome! I don’t remember being that breathless in a long time! And I am thinking of repeating it again after Christmas – would be good to burn off those Christmas dinner calories! Although thinking of it as the last workout before Christmas (almost last – I am bringing kettlebell with me to Galway lol) poses a question – what would my last workout of the year will be?