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Climate Control: The Indoor Running Workout

Blast Calories Without Moving!

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‪Can't get outside or to a treadmill? This circuit is your perfect solution; it alternates running-inspired cardio moves (low- and high-intensity) with resistance exercises to deliver even better results than you'd get from pounding pavement (or burning rubber) for an hour.‬

How it works: Each 5-minute set is broken down into three parts: a 3-minute, moderate-intensity jog, followed by a 1-minute, higher-intensity interval, and then a 1-minute strength move as an active recovery. Do each interval set twice. Try this workout up to 4 non-consecutive days per week, alternating it with your favorite strength plan (like this great resistance routine for runners) and/or flexibility training sessions.

If you're short on time, just do each interval once for an effective 25-minute cardio session.

You'll need: Nothing, but we recommend a timer to help keep track of the intervals.

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Interval Set 1

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Jog in place: 3 minutes
For the first round, jog at an easy pace to warm up. Once you are warm, focus on picking up the pace and using your upper body (drive bent arms back and forth). Make your jogging intervals more intense by moving your feet faster and lifting your knees higher.

Sprint: 1 minute
"Run" in place as fast as you possibly can while pumping your arms back and forth for 60 seconds [as shown]. You should be moving so fast that your heels hardly touch the ground.

Runner's lunges: 1 minute
This thigh- and glute-toning move serves as your active recovery after your sprint. Stand tall with your feet together, arms by your sides. Step back with one leg and lower into a lunge, hinging forward from the hips and reaching fingertips to the floor on either side of front foot [as shown]. Press through your front heel to stand back up and immediately repeat on the other side. Do as many reps as you can, alternating legs each time, for 60 seconds.

Repeat the full set one more time (2x total).

Interval Set 2

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Jog: 3 minutes

High knees: 1 minute
Drive your knees as high up towards your chest as you can, driving your arms with your legs, as fast as possible for 60 seconds [as shown].

Reverse kicks: 1 minute
Stand with your feet together, hands in fists in front of your chest. Bend your left knee in towards your chest, and then extend your leg behind you, pushing out through your heel, foot flexed [as shown]. Quickly bend your knee back in and step down. Repeat with the right leg. Do as many reps as you can, alternating legs each time, for 60 seconds.

Repeat the full set one more time (2x total).

Interval Set 3

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Jog: 3 minutes

Butt kickers: 1 minute
Rev up your run and kick your heels up towards your glutes, pumping your arms back and forth as quickly as you can for 60 seconds [as shown].

Single-leg squats: 1 minute
This sculpting move helps develop balance while toning your legs (and is better than using a leg press machine). Stand on your right leg, left foot flexed and lifted a few inches off the floor, hands behind your head. Push your hips back and bend your right knee to lower into squat [as shown]. Extend your right leg to return to standing, keeping left foot lifted the entire time. Repeat as many times as you can for 30 seconds, then switch legs.

Repeat the full set one more time (2x total).

Interval Set 4

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Jog: 3 minutes

"Ladder" drill: 1 minute
Create your own agility "ladder" on the ground by folding a jump rope and making a horizontal line on the ground (or simply use your imagination). Start just behind the left end of the line and quickly step (or jump) your feet over the rope, and then behind it again, moving down the rope in a zigzag pattern [as shown]. Once you reach the end, go back the other way. Move up and down the rope as quickly as you can, "running" or jumping with your feet, for 60 seconds.

Alternating front lunges: 1 minute
Stand with your feet together, hands on hips. Take a wide step forward with your right leg and lower into a lunge. Your right knee should be in line with your right heel, left knee close to the ground below your hips. Push off your front foot to return to standing. Immediately repeat on the other side. Do as many reps as you can, alternating legs each time, for 60 seconds.

Repeat the full set one more time (2x total).

Interval Set 5

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Jog: 3 minutes

Tire run: 1 minute
Stand with feet wider than hip width (as if you were standing in the center of two tires). Pump arms and drive knees up and to the side, keeping feet wide [as shown], as quickly as possible for 60 seconds.

Power lunges: 1 minute
Pump it up with some plyometrics for your final interval set! Lower into a lunge with the right foot forward, hands in fists in front of your body [as shown]. Swing arms up and overhead as you jump up, switching legs mid-air [as shown], landing in a lunge with the left foot forward. Do as many reps as you can, alternating legs each time, for 60 seconds.

Repeat the full set one more time (2x total).

After your final set, recover your heart rate and breathing by walking in place, and then wrap up your workout with a few athletic stretches like these.

Photos by: Vanessa Rogers Photography