With my busy life, I struggle to find time to get to the gym. Between my career, the kids and everything else in-between; working on my fitness always finds itself at the bottom of the list so I had to find a solution.
If I could just carve out at least 15 minutes a day to move my body, it would be 15 more minutes of exercise that would benefit my body and mind, and improve my health.
I identified the mornings as my best time, so I set my alarm 20 minutes earlier than usual to start my day with an exercise routine that can be done any place, any time, and no props necessarily needed. However, I do recommend a watch or clock so you are able to keep track of your intervals and a jump rope if you have it but it’s not necessary.
- Jump Into Action - 1 minute warm up
To start, one minute of the aerobic exercise jumping jacks will get your cardio vascular system pumping. This exercise is performed by jumping to a position with the legs spread wide and the hands touching overhead, sometimes a clap, and them returning to a position with the feet together and the arms as the sides.
RUNNING IN PLACE WITH HIGH KNEES
- Run Into Weight Loss and a Healthy Heart - two 30 second intervals
Next, continue warming up by running in place for 30 seconds which is proven to burn beaucoup calories leading to weight loss, increased muscle tone, and definition. Begin by leaping softly from foot to foot for 30 seconds, focusing on landing on the balls of your feet and kicking your heels toward the ceiling.
After 30 seconds, transition into exaggerated knee lifts which will help to firm your core, add flexibility, and get your heart rate going. Stand in place with your feet hip-width apart. Drive your right knee toward your chest and then quickly place it back on the ground. Follow immediately by driving your left knee toward your chest. Continue to alternate knees slowly during the first warm up interval but as quickly as you can during the second time around.
- Blast Fat and Tighten Your Butt with a Low-Body Workout - 1 minute
Squat Jacks are a lower-body workout that will fight fat, create lean legs, and tighten your bum which happens to be the biggest muscle in the body. Stand with feet hip width apart, arms by sides. Lower into a squat, reaching arms outside of knees, palms facing forward. Quickly jump up with arms extended overhead, landing on the balls of the feet. Jump back out to squat position to complete one rep and continue to do this for one minute as fast as possible.
- Simulate climbing to elevate heart rate and build muscles - 1 minute
The Mountain Climber is a great total body exercise blending cardio with strength fundamentals. It elevates your heart rate while building muscles in your legs, back, shoulders and core. Start by standing with feet hip-width apart. Lean forward and put your hands on the floor shoulder width apart. Walk your feet backward until your body is straight from the top of your head to heels and your hands are directly beneath your shoulders. Keep your upper body still and arms straight as you slowly bend your right leg and bring your knee up toward your right arm as far as you can and then place it back down on the floor. Repeat with your left leg and left arm for one minute.
- Jumping rope burns big numbers of calories - 1 minute
Jumping Rope is the perfect method for not only burning lots of calories but also improving conditioning and coordination. First, find a good rope* and make sure to jump on a shock absorbent surface such as a wood floor, gym mat, outdoor track or tennis court. Hold both rope handles in both hands and swing in a large circular motions while jumping up when the rope is about to get to your feet. Continue for the entire minute even if you misstep. Even though you may have done this as a child, practice makes perfect to continue in a non-stop pace.
Please note that you don’t necessarily need a jump robe for this exercise as you can simulate jumping rope without the prop.
Push your own body weight along with gravity to condition - 1 minute
The push-up is the perfect calisthenics exercise that uses your own body weight and gravity to tone the chest, triceps and the entire mid-section as a whole. To start, set your palms on the floor just outside the width of your shoulders with your fingers pointed straight ahead. Begin with your arms extended and all your weight on your hands and toes with your feel flexed. Your torso and thighs should create a straight line. Engage your core to maintain this straight-body position as you bend your elbows to lower body to the floor. Once elbows are at 90 degrees, straighten them again to raise your body back up and complete the rep.
Please note that you may need to build up to doing push-ups on your toes, so modify by starting on your knees. Also, make sure to keep your core tight so your hips don’t sag.
- Best Exercise to toughen up abdominal muscles - 1 minute
The plank exercise strengthens abdominal muscles, but is also works all the core muscles in addition to the back and hips. Start by lying face down on the ground and place your elbows and forearms underneath your chest. Prop yourself up to form a bridge using your toes and forearms. Maintain a flat back and do not allow your hips to sag towards the ground. Hold this position focusing on tightening your abs until you can no longer maintain a flat bridge. For beginners, hold for as long as you can and then take a break when necessary for the whole minute.
When you are done with plank, you have completed the first set and should start the whole regime over again. It may take you a few times to build up your stamina so remember to start small and modify if necessary.
After the second set, take one additional minute to lie on your back and pull your knees into your chest to massage out your lower back.
To be fit, I recommend eating a healthy diet of real foods and exercising on a regular basis. Also, if you have any health issues you should speak to your doctor before starting any exercise routine.
I am the creator of All Things Fashionating, a personal and lifestyle blog where this Jersey Girl turned Angeleno posts about my real life stories, notions of fashion and style, views on family, obsession with health and exercise, journey into spirituality, among other topics I find fashionating.