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Strength and Power Travel Circuit

This total body workout has everything you need for a complete workout, whether you're on the road or just short on time.  The workout alternates a dynamic strength move along with a high-intensity power move so you work your entire body and get your heart rate up to burn more calories.   

  • Beginners:  This is an intermediate/advanced workout.  Modify the exercises, or start with this Beginner/Intermediate Circuit.
  • Intermediate/Advanced:  Perform each exercise one after the other, resting when you need to. 
  • Warm up with a few minutes of light cardio or light versions of each exercise.
  • Complete 1 circuit for a short workout, or go through the series 2 to 3 more times for a more challenging workout.
  • If you don't have weights, use whatever's handy (water bottles, soup cans, etc.) or use no weights and add reps if you need more intensity
  • For low-impact substitutes, find ideas at Low Impact Circuit Workout.
  • Monitor your intensity, and make sure you stay between about level 4 to 8.  Modify the workout as needed, and avoid any exercises that cause pain or that are confusing.
  • See your doctor if you have any medical conditions, illnesses or injuries.

Squats with Overhead Press  
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Holding medium-heavy weights just over the shoulders, squat as low as you can and do 3 slow pulses, only coming halfway up.  On the fourth pulse, stand up and push the weights overhead.  Repeat the series for 12 to 16 reps.

Plyo-Jacks

Begin with feet together and jump up, taking feet out to the side while circling arms overhead and land in a squat.  Jump up and bring feet back together, circling arms back in. This is just like a slow jumping jack, but really use power when pushing up into the jumps. Repeat for 30 to 60 seconds.
Wall Sit with Chest Squeeze

Squeezing a medicine ball (or any other type of ball, or even a pillow), slide down the wall until your thighs are parallel to the floor. Hold this position and keep pressure on the ball as your straighten the arms out in front of you and slowly pull them back in.  Repeat the chest squeezes in and out for 12 to 16 reps, and then stand up.

Front Kick with Squat
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Lower into a squat and, as you press up, kick out with the right leg.  Repeat, squatting and kicking with the left leg. Continue alternating squats and kicks for 1 minute.

Walking Lunges with Lateral Raises
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Step right foot forward into a lunge and, with elbows bent to 90 degrees, lift the arms up to shoulder level.  Step in, lower the arms and repeat on the other foot.  Continue walking lunges and lateral raises for 12 reps on each side.

Plyo-Lunge
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Begin in a lunge position and jump up, switching the feet in the air, landing with the other foot forward in a lunge.  Repeat for 30 seconds, rest and do it for 30 seconds more. 

Low Lunges
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This is a different take on the traditional lunge.  Begin in a split stance, but with the feet closer together than in a lunge.  Tip from the hips, keeping the back straight, and lunge down, taking weights towards the floor on either side of the front foot.  Keeping weight in the front foot, push halfway up and repeat for 16 reps, keeping the movement small and the weight on the front foot.   Switch sides.
Plyo Jacks

Begin with feet together and jump up, taking feet out to the side, landing in a low squat.  Jump up and bring feet back together (a very slow jumping jack).  Swing your arms overhead to add intensity.  Do this move for 30 seconds, rest for a few seconds, and repeat for another 30 seconds.  (This is a tough one!) 

Pushups on the Ball
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This is a very challenging move, targeting both balance and strength.  Hold the ball wherever feels most comfortable to you (you could even prop it against a wall if needed) and lower down until the chest touches the ball. Repeat for 12 to 16 reps. If you don't like this move, do regular pushups.

Squat Thrusts
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Stand with feet together.  Squat down and place your hands on the floor next to your feet.  In an explosive movement,  jump feet backwards into a push-up position, jump feet back between hands and stand up.  Perform 6 reps, briefly recover, repeat 6 more times.  March in place to lower the heart rate before the last exercise.

Plank
 
Support the body on the elbows and toes, keeping the back straight and that abs engaged (don't sag in the middle).  Hold this position for 30 to 60 seconds.

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