HOW TO DO IT
FAST STEP-UP: Using a step, stair, or sturdy, stationary box, step up onto the box and down to the ground as fast as you can with good form. If you start by stepping up with your right foot first, change your lead foot to your left halfway through each set.
REVERSE FLY: Holding one dumbbell in each hand (5- to 15-lbs each), bend forward at your hips to no more than 90 degrees. As you exhale, squeeze your shoulder blades together and raise the dumbbells laterally (to the sides) until your hands reach about shoulder height or slightly below. Inhale as you lower the dumbbells back to the starting position.
JUMP ROPE: Put the dumbbells down and pick up your jump rope. Jump rope on two feet, alternating feet, or one foot for 1 to 2 minutes.
PLANK: Position yourself with your forearms or palms on the floor (making sure your elbows/hands are directly under your shoulders) and your legs extended behind you.
HOW TO KNOW IF YOU ARE DOING IT RIGHT
During the reverse fly, you should feel your upper back and the backs of the shoulders working. To maintain correct form, make sure you engage your abs to keep a flat back in the bent-over position. To maintain the correct arm movement, make sure to keep your elbows bent slightly, lead with your elbows, do not go past shoulder height when you lift, and keep your chest facing the ground. While jumping rope you should feel your heart rate rise quickly. Keep your chest lifted and use your wrists (instead of your shoulders) to swing the jumprope. Finally, during plank position, you should feel your core and shoulders working.
You should feel like you cannot do another repetition at the end of each exercise during each set. If you can easily continue any of the exercises, try one of the progressions below.
HOW TO MAKE IT EASIER
Perform the fast step-ups at a slower pace or using a lower step; do the reverse fly with a staggered stance (one foot slightly in front of the other) or try a row instead; do the jumprope motion without using a jumprope; and do the plank with knees on the ground. You can also try 1 or 2 sets if 3 to 5 is too challenging.
HOW TO CHALLENGE YOURSELF OR PROGRESS
If you can do 2 additional repetitions on the reverse fly or can continue stepping up, jumping rope, or holding plank for an additional 15 seconds, consider challenging yourself: To make the fast step-ups more difficult, increase the height of your step, or the number of repetitions or time, or add a step-hop (hop up on a the step/box) or box jump (jump from the floor onto the step with both feet). If performing a box jump, you may need to lower the height of your box or step. To make the reverse fly harder, increase the number of repetitions (if you are doing fewer than 20) or weight. To challenge yourself with the jumprope, try double-unders (two swings of the rope to one jump), try jumping on one foot (for example, jump on your right foot for one minute, then your left foot for one minute), or increase the length of time you jump rope. To make the plank harder increase the time (by 10- or 15-second increments), or try Side Plank, alternately moving your weight to rest on your left palm and the sides of your stacked feet, then moving to the right side. To make Side Plank harder stack your left foot on top of your right foot (instead of staggering the feet), or lift your left foot approximately 12 inches above the right foot, then repeat on the other side.
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ORDER OF MOVES
- FAST STEP-UP
- REVERSE FLY
SETS & REPS & TIME
Do 25 to 50 repetitions or 30 to 60 seconds of the Fast Step-Ups; do 10 to 15 repetitions of the Reverse Fly; Jump Rope for 1 to 2 minutes; and hold Plank 30 to 60 seconds. Repeat the circuit (workout) 3 to 5 times.
WEIGHT OR RESISTANCE
Medium-weight dumbbells (5- to 10-lbs for most women; 8- to 15-lbs for most men)
step or box; two medium-weight dumbbells (5- to 10-lbs for most women, 8- to 15-lbs for most men), a jumprope, and mat (optional)
DON'T DO THIS MOVE IF
Don’t do the reverse fly if you have low back or shoulder problems.