Get fit in bed. Pajamas optional.

By Jay Cardiello
October 25, 2012

Get your mind out of the gutter! While sex does burn calories, you can perform a legitimate workout in your bed. I've designed this one to focus on symmetry and balance while tightening and toning those places that you might otherwise want to keep covered up. Best of all, you can literally do it in your pajamas.

Don't dismiss this as some gimmick: This workout is backed by science and based on the idea of proprioception. If you haven't been following my blog, this is basically the feedback loop between the body and the brain. When you perform a workout on an unstable surface, which in this case will be your bed, you train your brain to fire more rapidly in order for it to adjustment your body's position. The body reacts by re-stabilizing, which results in greater muscle recruitment, balance, and symmetry in your hips (great for post-baby bodies or preparing your body for labor) and working stability muscles, especially in and around ball-and-socket joints such as the shoulders and hips.

And, to top it all off, you are going to burn more calories working out on an unstable surface versus performing these same movements on the floor of your bedroom.

Perform the following moves back-to-back without rest for 30 seconds each, doing as many reps as possible. Repeat the entire sequence for a total of two to four circuits.

1. Inchworms: Begin in a push-up position with your hands directly under your shoulders and your legs fully extended. In one movement, reach your right hand back toward your navel while driving your left knee to your right hand, connecting just under your belly button. Return to the starting position and repeat with the opposite hand and knee. Continue alternating until time is up.

Coach's tip: Focus your eyes toward the bed. Looking forward or up toward the ceiling will cause unwanted stress on your neck.

2. Caterpillars: For this advanced version of the inchworm, begin in a push-up position. In one movement, reach your right hand back toward your navel while driving your left foot to your hand. The two will connect just under your belly button. Retract and repeat, alternating sides.

Coach's tip: To keep your body from twisting side to side, squeeze and contract both your abdominals and glutes.

3. Unicorns: Begin in a push-up position. Simultaneously raise your right arm and left leg as high as possible. Be sure to keep both limbs fully extended. Retract and repeat with your left arm and right leg, and continue alternating.

Coach's tip: Your goal eventually is to drive both limbs past the point of parallel to the bed. Keep your eyes focused toward the bed to remain stable.

4. Geisha-ups: Begin in a modified push-up position with both hands directly under your shoulders, knees on the bed. Lower your body to perform a push-up. As you raise your body up, push backward until your butt rests firmly on your heels and both arms are fully extended as if you are performing child's pose. Retract and repeat.

Coach's tip: Be sure your head, hips, and knees form one straight line at the beginning of the movement.

5. Bottle caps: Begin in a seated position, feet flat on the bed with arms fully extended behind you. Push both your hands and feet into the bed while elevating your hips and belly button to the ceiling so that you form a table with your body. In one movement, lift your right hand and left knee to meet over your navel. Return to the tabletop position and repeat with your opposite hand and knee. Continue alternating until time is up.

Coach's tip: Keep your gluteus contracted and your eyes focused on the ceiling in order to keep your back parallel to the bed.