Torch more than 100 calories in just 10 minutes with these 5 quick cardio blasts

By Jessica Smith
April 29, 2013

1. Jump Rope Drills

Grab a jump rope and get to work! Use this portable and super-effective piece of cardio equipment to torch calories and develop agility and coordination--all while you tone up your legs, butt, shoulders, and arms.

Jump Rope Drills Chart

Exercise Descriptions

Crossover jump: Jump rope as usual and then cross your arms in front of you while the rope is in the air. This will shift the rope-turning work from your biceps to your shoulders and forearms.

Ladder drill: Fold the jump rope and make a horizontal line on the ground. Start just behind the left end of the line and quickly step (or jump) over the rope, and then behind it again, moving down the rope in a zigzag pattern. Once you reach the end, go back the other way.

Boxer jump: Keep your weight in your heels and jump one foot out in front of you at a time.

Forward and back: While twirling the rope, hop back and forth over an imaginary line. The added challenge gets your heart rate up and forces you to jump a little higher.

Jump rope lunges: Do jumping lunges as usual but add in a twirl of the rope while in the air. The fear of hitting the rope keeps your jumps high and prevents resting on the landing.

2. Kettlebell Quickie

Kettlebell workouts can get you total-body toning, increased cardiovascular fitness, core strengthening and improved posture and balance-without a big time investment. In fact, a recent study from the American Council on Exercise (ACE) found that kettlebell training can torch up to 20 calories a minute!

Kettlebell Quickie Workout Chart

Exercise Descriptions

Kettlebell swings: Stand with feet wider than shoulders and place a kettlebell between them on the ground. Squat and grab kettlebell with right hand, palm facing body. Rise up, pushing hips forward and engaging glutes, as you swing kettlebell to chest height, arm straight. Immediately squat again, lowering kettlebell between legs, and repeat.

Gunslinger lunges: Start with feet together, holding the kettlebell in your left hand. Step back with your left leg, lower into a lunge, and perform a biceps curl (bell bottom down). Immediately return to the starting position, and repeat.

Squat rotator: Stand with feet together, holding the kettlebell with right hand in "rack" position (the bell should rest on the back of your hand with the handle running diagonally across your palm). Step out to the left and lower into a squat as you press the bell to ceiling and reach left hand down between feet. Try to create a straight line between both hands with your arms, and then slowly return to start position.

High-pull burpees: Hold the kettlebell in right hand and stand with feet slightly wider than hip width. To perform a basic high pull, lower into a squat, swinging the bell through legs, and as you stand, pull the bell back, bending elbow so that it points out to the side. Immediately lower into a squat and perform a burpee on top of the bell. Return to start and repeat.

Kettlebell leg raises: Hook the kettlebell over right foot, bend knee, and lift right leg straight up in front of you and then out to the side. Move slowly and with control.

3. Super Sprints

Run your buns off in just 10 minutes with this quick interval running routine that you can do without a treadmill, indoors or out!


Exercise Descriptions

Butt kickers: Kick heels up towards glutes, pumping arms back and forth as quickly as possible.

Tire run: 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 quickly as possible.

High knees: Drive knees as high up towards your chest as you can, driving your arms with your legs, as fast as possible.

4. 10-Minute HIIT

High intensity interval training was meant for time crunched workout days. Try this 10-minute calorie sizzler anytime, anywhere (it's perfect for hotel rooms!) you need a quick shot of cardio.


Exercise Descriptions

Ski moguls: Stand with feet together, squat down, and swing arms behind you. Jump up and to the right, swinging arms in front of you, landing in your start position. Continue jumping side to side as quickly as you can.

Squat jumps in and out: Stand with feet together. Lower into a squat and swing arms back behind you, and then quickly jump up, swinging arms overhead. Land in a squat position with feet hip-width apart, and swing your arms back to immediately jump up again. Repeat as quickly as you can, jumping in and out with your feet each time.

Scissor skier: Stand tall with feet together, arms by sides. Jump up and bring left foot forward and right foot back as you reach right arm up and left arm back (palms facing in). Land softly and then immediately jump again, switching feet and arms in a scissor motion as quickly as possible.

Plank side tucks: Start in straight-arm plank position with feet together. Jump both feet in, tucking knees towards the outside of left elbow. Jump feet back to full plank, and then quickly repeat on the other side. That's one rep. Repeat as quickly as you can, alternating sides each time.

Side-to-side shuffle jumps: Stand with feet hip-width apart, squat down, and reach right hand to the floor, just outside of right foot. Push off both legs and jump up and to the left, landing in a squat, reaching left hand to the outside of left foot. Repeat as quickly as possible, moving from side to side.

Squat jacks: Lower into a squat and bring arms in front of you. Jump feet together, still holding squat position, as you swing arms back by sides, keeping elbows bent. "Jack" feet out and in as quickly as you can without coming up out of your squat.

Donkey kick ups: Stand with feet hip-width apart, arms by sides. Push hips back and bend knees to lower into a squat and prepare for a donkey kick, placing hands under shoulders, keeping arms straight. Shift weight into arms and jump up with legs, kicking heels in close to butt. Land with feet hip width and jump straight up, pushing arms behind body as you jump. Land and immediately repeat.

5. CrossFit-Inspired Cardio

Even if you can't make it to a "box" near you, this CrossFit-inspired cardio quickie will challenge your whole body and have you sweating buckets. It's so simple, you don't even need a chart to follow.

How it works: Do 2 sets of the circuit below, performing as many reps as possible (AMRAP) in 1 minute for each exercise.

CrossFit Bear Crawl

The Exercises

1. Squats: Stand tall with feet shoulder-width apart, arms straight out in front of your body at shoulder level. Lower body as far down as you can by pushing hips back and bending knees. Pause, then slowly push back up to starting position. Repeat until 1 minute is up, keeping weight on heels, not toes, for the entire movement.

2. Bear crawl: Kneel on the ground on all fours, then lift knees. Keeping knees bent, move left foot and hand forward, then step forward with the right foot and hand to complete 1 step.

3. Pushups: Place hands slightly wider than and in line with shoulders on the floor, feet hip width. Slowly lower body until your chest nearly touches the ground. Pause at the bottom, and then push back up to the starting position as quickly as possible.

4. Sit-ups: Lie faceup on the floor with knees bent and feet flat. Place fingertips behind ears. Raise torso to a sitting position. The movement should be fluid, not jerky. Slowly lower torso back to the starting position, keeping elbows in line with body the entire time.

5. Burpees: Stand with feet shoulder-width apart, then squat and put hands on floor in front of feet. Hop feet back, then forward again. Jump up, catching air and raising hands overhead. Land softly and immediately repeat by lowering into a squat. Continue for 1 minute. (Add a pushup while you're in plank pose for more of a challenge.)

Calories burned: 115, based on a 140-pound woman, and may vary depending on fitness level, weight, and body composition.