It’s Fat To Fit Club time again! Welcome back, you beautiful people. This is our second Fat To Fit Club of 2019. Today’s exercise will really get your blood pumping.
Okay. So you’re more than likely getting the idea that I LOVE HIIT workouts. They are short and sweet, but really get the blood pumping and enable you to work up a sweat. What’s not to love?
To read about the many benefits of HIIT workout, click here.
We started off last week with a bit of inspiration from possibly the two most known HIIT advocates, but I thought I’d branch out this week with a workout of my own creation.
Before we crack on, have you downloaded the Seconds Interval Timer (or an equivalent) on your phone yet?
BTW, I’m not affiliated with the Seconds app, but it is a really handy tool to make sure you’re working out and resting for the right duration.
Do you have a water bottle to hand? If not, go grab one and come back quickly!
Fat To Fit:
It is essential to warm up to avoid causing any injury and to enable you to move more freely throughout the exercises.
Last week I linked to a warm up by Joe Wicks on YouTube. You can still use this if you like, but why not try this as a nice easy warm up today instead?
Spend 30 seconds on each move:
- Silent jump rope– Arms by your side, bent at elbow and wrist, swinging in a circular motion as if using a skipping rope. Legs kicking out with the heel touching the floor
- Windmill – Legs are spread just more than shoulder width apart, arms are outstretched. Keeping back straight as you move, one arm should reach down and touch the opposite leg, ankle or foot depending on where is comfortable. You should look up towards the outstretched arm for maximum effects on your muscles
- Mini squats – Just like a squat only not lowering yourself as far down. Your hips should create a right angle with your knees
- Marching High Knees – Marching on the spot and bringing your knees up to your chest as much as possible without falling over.
This warm up will certainly loosen you up and raise your heart rate enough before we kick into full gear!
Fat To Fit Club: HIIT Exercise
For those of you who have just joined us, HIIT workouts consist of short bursts of high-intensity exercises with short rest periods in between.
For the following workout, we will be working on a 30-second exercise followed by 30 second rest period. Repeat the cycle four times.
This week’s exercises include:
- Sumo Squats
- Slow Crunch
- Push-ups (can be substituted for modified push-ups)
- Front & Back Lunges
- Modified Plank
Exercise: How To
Squats are probably one of the best exercises for the lower body but they can get boring after a while. That’s why it’s a good idea to tweak them a little and mix up different types of squats in your workouts.
The sumo squat is a relatively simple move and is a great exercise for those starting out. It attacks the inner thighs and glutes, who doesn’t want a toned posterior?
Start by standing with feet wide apart and pointing ahead.
Lower down into a sitting position by bending at the hips and knees and putting your weight on your heels.
Your chest and knees should be kept out and thighs parallel to the ground then return to the starting position.
Crunches are great exercises to work on your abs and obliques but it’s often assumed that you just know how to do them properly.
While there have been plenty of studies to compare the results of slow crunches vs fast crunches, your pace won’t matter if your form is incorrect. Simple.
Start by laying down with your back flat, legs bent and feet on the floor at shoulder width apart.
Hands should be behind your head to support your neck as you raise up.
Keeping your head neutral, you should lift your shoulders off the ground and crunch your core. Lower your shoulders down to the ground again and that’s one rep done!
Don’t raise your back off the ground you are not doing sit-ups, this is crunches.
Push ups are a great total body workout. They work the chest, arms, shoulders and require great stability from the core and hips too.
It’s such a popular exercise but as you might have guessed, if the form is off it can cause injury.
Start the push up in plank position, arms shoulder width apart, fingers sprayed resting on your bent toes. Lowering down your elbows should be at a 45-degree angle, although this is dependant on your mobility.
To avoid lasting damage, keep your core tight and back flat making sure that your body is in one straight line.
It’s clear to see why people often think of a moving plank when they talk about push ups.
Front & Back Lunges
Want a great way to develop thigh muscles and strengthen your hips? Do some lunges!
By doing lunges you’ll build strength in your hips, hamstrings, quads and glutes and also increase your balance.
To do front lunges, start standing upright with feet
Lower your body until your thigh is parallel to the floor with your shin in a vertical position.
If you can, lightly tap your lower knee to the ground but still keeping your weight in the other heel.
When moving back up, your weight should be on your heel to force yourself upwards.
Now repeat this but stepping backwards.
Planking is an extremely popular exercise for strengthening your core muscles and working a large group of muscles simultaneously.
Planking can help with toning your abdomen, relieving back pain, improving your balance and enhancing your flexibility.
To correctly perform a plank, lay on the floor on your stomach. Place your elbows under your shoulders and your hands gripped to form a V shape with your arms.
Feet: In a normal plank you would raise up on your toes/balls of your feet as if performing a push up.
As this is a modified plank to raise up, bring yourself up onto your knees.
When pulling yourself up, you will be holding yourself up with your core, ensuring that the back is straight and not arched or sagging.
It might sound ridiculous, but you need to pull your belly button inwards for the move to be most effective.
Hold this position for 30 seconds.
Workout Cool Down
For this week’s cool down I wanted to bring my heart rate back down easily and stretch all my muscles properly. There’s nothing worse than spending the next three days barely able to move because the cool down was skipped!
Carry out approx 20 seconds of each item below:
- Silent Jump Rope – Same as the warm up
- Self hug – Gently kicking heels out in front, throw your arms around your body and repeat.
- Over shoulder stretch – Place one arm behind your head. Grab your outstretched elbow with your other hand and stretch.
- Heel drop stretch – Stretching one leg out in front, with a straight back, reach out in front to grab the toes and hold for 20 seconds. Repeat on other leg.
- Seated calf stretch – Sit with legs stretched out in front, reach out and grab toes. Hold again for 20 seconds.
- Knee chest hug – Lay on your back and tuck your knees into your chest. Hug your knees and hold for 20 seconds.
- Standing quad stretch – Raise one foot behind and grab the toes. Place one hand on wall in front for stabilization. Repeat on other leg.
Fat To fit: How did we do?
I’ll admit that last week, I struggled big time with the moves. It had been a while since I performed any exercise and it definitely showed. Getting back to fitness has been a great move as my mood and sleep patterns are improving.
I have loved this routine this week. I am definitely getting back to form, and the thing I love about HIIT is, aside from the time saving factor, you are constantly improving. Last week I struggled to do 10 minutes on my first day. By the end of the week I was nailing that and ready to go for more.
This week, I’ve increased to twenty minutes working out – not including warm up and cool down.
As you become fitter, you’ll be able to increase your speed and cram in more reps in your allotted time. It’s also great to consider extending your working out period and shortening your rest period as you advance.
Have you read our first Fat To Fit Club?
How did you fare with this HIIT workout? Let me know in the comments!
Until next time…