Eliminate "junk reps" and start really activating your abs, shoulders, glutes, and hamstrings with this 30-minute workout. Oh, you'll burn a ton of calories too!
To find foolproof exercises that would whip every body part into shape, we went to 45 Grand, Nike’s fancy de facto fitness lab in New York City, where top trainers are in residence cooking up next-level workout routines.
That's where we enlisted Joe Holder, the Nike run coach and trainer who heads the studio's smart running program. No matter what Holder is teaching—interval runs, private training sessions, group HIIT workouts—he always starts with key primer moves to activate the abs and the often overlooked muscles on your flip side: your rear shoulders, glutes, and hamstrings. “These kinds of high-quality compound exercises require all of your muscles to work in tandem, forcing them to wake up and making it virtually impossible to cheat,” Holder says.
Do Holder’s super seven series as a compact total-body workout (it will take you about 30 minutes) or pair it with his 20-minute interval run (below) or your favorite cardio for a complete firm-and-burn session. “When you start striding, you’ll go faster and feel stronger for longer, which equals more calories burned, more muscles worked, and another workout closer to the body you desire,” Holder says. (And to watch holder demo the moves, check out the Reboot Your Workout Routine video!)
Right after completing your last rep, head outside or hit a treadmill and start running at a comfortable pace (shoot for a 6 out of 10 on the RPE scale). For the next 20 minutes, alternate between recovering at this comfortable effort and doing bursts where you bump up your intensity to an 8 or more. If you’re outside, Holder suggests using landmarks to dictate the length of your sprint intervals: Sprint to that stop sign or big tree off in the distance, then recover until you get to the yellow house on the corner. If you’re on a treadmill, you can time your sprints and recoveries to the duration of the chorus in a song you’re listening to, or to the length of a commercial if the TV is on in the background, or to the point of burning a specific number of calories between one and 10. Whether you’re indoors or out, the only rule is to vary your pace and the length of each interval.
How it works: Do each exercise in order without rest for the number of reps indicated. When you’ve done all seven, rest for one minute. Repeat the circuit twice more. Follow it up with trainer Joe Holder’s interval run, below, twice a week on alternate days. You can also do the moves before any HIIT or cardio work out you choose.
Total Time: up to 30 minutes
1. Hip Abduction Bird Dog
Start on all fours. Raise left knee out to side (keeping the 90-degree bend in your leg).
Return to start position, then draw right elbow and left knee to meet at your center.
Next, extend right arm and left leg straight out. Pause, then return to start position. Switch sides; repeat.
8 to 12
2. Plank Roll
Start in a side plank on right forearm with feet stacked and left hand on left hip. Raise and lower left leg 10 times.
Rotate forward to come into plank on forearms. Next, alternate lifting and lowering left leg and right leg 5 times each. Then rotate into a side plank on left forearm and repeat.
3. Hand-Release Push-Up Climber
Start in plank on palms. Slowly lower to floor on a 4 count.
Lift hands and extend arms forward, then place palms beside chest and push back up.
Next, alternate bringing left and right knee between arms 5 times each.
8 to 12
4. Sprinter Sit-Up
Lie faceup with arms extended overhead and lower back pressed into floor to start. Sit up explosively, driving right arm forward with elbow bent and left knee bent and up (as if sprinting while sitting down). Roll back to start position. Switch sides; repeat.
5. Donkey-Kick Knee Drive
Start on all fours. Slowly lift left leg (keeping the 90-degree bend in your leg), driving sole of foot toward ceiling until thigh is parallel to floor.
Lower knee toward floor, then lift again. Do that 5 times. Next, kneel on right leg with left foot planted in front of you.
Then explosively drive right knee and left arm forward, landing in a half squat. Return to kneel, and do that 5 times. Then repeat the whole move on opposite side.
6. Walk-Out T-Bar Burpee
Stand with feet shoulder-width apart; fold forward and plant palms on floor. Walk hands forward into plank.
Do a push-up, then reach left arm out to side and straight up, looking up at hand. Return to plank, then do a push-up. Repeat reach with right arm. Do a push-up, jump feet toward hands, then jump as high as you can.
8 to 12
7. Lateral Bound High Knees
Stand on left leg with knee soft, right arm forward, and left arm back with elbows bent to start. Jump as high and as far right as you can, landing on right leg with left arm forward, right arm back.
Then quickly drive right knee up, followed by left knee, alternating arms, 2 times each. Repeat, jumping to left.
8 to 12