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7 Cardio HIIT Exercises That Burn Fat and Reduce Stress

If you're reading this, you probably know *all* about the stress-relieving qualities of exercise. Boosting your blood flow and heart rate is a surefire way to combat a bad day. There are lots of ways to show your bad mood who's boss. Lifting heavy things, for one, will make you feel strong enough to take on anything. But giving it all you've got in a HIIT workout—so you can't think about anything other than what your body is doing right now—is a good plan, too.

Here, Katie Dunlop of Love Sweat Fitness put together a seven-exercise circuit training workout that will leave you feeling breathless and badass. You can knock out your workout fast, but see results that will last.

What you'll need: Nada. These bodyweight moves can be done anywhere.  

How it works: You'll perform each exercise in a row for 40 seconds of hard work followed by 20 seconds of rest. Once you reach the end, start the entire circuit over again for a total of 3 rounds with 2 minutes of rest between rounds.

Star Jump

A. Stand with feet hip-distance apart. Bend knees coming into a squat and quickly push through the heels to explode up, bringing arms overhead and legs out to the sides, as if performing a jumping jack.
B. Reverse movement and gently land on feet before quickly jumping again. Repeat.

Perform 40 seconds of work with 20 seconds of rest before moving on to next exercise.

Air Jump Rope

A. From standing, bring elbows in at sides as if holding handles of a jump rope.
B. Hop on both feet, alternating feet, or jump in and out with feet while rotating forearms in tight circular motions as if jumping rope.

Perform 40 seconds of work with 20 seconds of rest before moving on to next exercise.

Mountain Climber

A. Start in high plank position with hands stacked below shoulders and a straight line from heels to head.
B. Drive right knee into chest, return foot, then drive left knee into chest. Continue alternating moving as quickly as possible. (Make it harder by crossing right knee to left armpit and left knee into right armpit.)

Perform 40 seconds of work with 20 seconds of rest before moving on to next exercise.

Ice Skater

A. Begin at the bottom of a curtsy lunge position with bent left leg diagonally behind bent right and left hand lightly tapping the floor.
B. Explode up while shifting weight to opposite side and switching legs and hands. Continue alternating from side to side.

Perform 40 seconds of work with 20 seconds of rest before moving on to next exercise.

Reverse Lunge with Knee-Up

A. From standing, step right foot back into a yoga lunge (back leg straight, front knee bent), and lean forward to tap right hand on floor near left foot.
B. Push through front heel to explode up, driving back knee up toward chest. Reverse the movement and land softly back in lunge position. Repeat.

Perform 40 seconds of work with 20 seconds of rest before moving on to next exercise.

Breakdancer

A. From table top position—hands stacked under shoulders, knees stacked under hips—hover knees just above the floor.
B. Rotate to right, bringing left knee through to meet right elbow. In one fluid motion, return to center and rotate to left, bringing right knee through to meet left elbow. Repeat.

High Knees

A. From standing, quickly alternate right knee and left knee into chest, keeping chest open and neck elevated.

Perform 40 seconds of work with 20 seconds of rest before beginning circuit again to complete a total of 3 rounds. 

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