How do you get back in shape at home with just 20 minutes to spare? This 20-minute bodyweight workout is ideal for keeping you healthy, put you back in condition, and lose belly fat. It would be best if you also had a sound nutritional plan in place.
The workout starts with an on-the-spot light jogging followed by eight bodyweight exercises designed to improve your muscle tone and burn fat.
These are good old-fashioned, run-of-the-mill exercises that still stand the test of time, as you come across them in gym classes or martial arts clubs. This quick workout routine was designed to improve your cardiovascular fitness and stamina while toning up your muscles.
Perform each exercise as hard as possible, then rest 30 seconds before jumping into the next one. Pay close attention to execution, keeping correct form, particularly for your bridges and squats.
This workout targets your whole body and is a good foundation regimen for more demanding circuit training workouts down the line.
Spot-run for 3 minutes
Just jog on the spot. It does not have to be complicated, no high knees or jumping, just a gentle warming-up before the core exercises.
Jumping jack – 50 repetitions
This is an old-school exercise to burn fat. Start from a standing position with your feet close, then jump to a vertical position with your feet on the side, wider than your shoulders, while at the same time lifting your arms from your sides to above your head.
Jump back to the start position and keep repeating in quick succession. Make sure to slightly bend your knees at each landing to absorb the shock and keep your joints healthy.
Crunch – 15 repetitions
Lay down on your back with your knees bent. Place your hands on the side of your head, slightly touching them with your fingers and your elbows sticking out, then crunch your abs, trying to get your shoulders toward your hips without dropping tension when returning to the start position.
Keep your neck in line with your spine, using a reference point to stare at in the ceiling. Ensure to use a smooth movement to be constantly under tension throughout the movement with a 1-second hold at the top of the crunch.
Then slowly return to the start position, touching the back of your shoulders, and repeat immediately for 15 repetitions.
Bridges – 10 repetitions
Lay down on your back with straight arms on your sides and palms facing upward. Push the floor with your heels until your hips lift to form a straight line from your shoulders to your knees.
Your lower legs from your knees to your feet should be vertical. Hold this position for 10 seconds. Squeeze your glutes and lower yourself to the start point. This movement targets your posterior chain: lower back, hamstrings, and glutes.
Cardio Step up – 1 minute
It would help if you got hold of a cardio stepper for this exercise. If you do not have one, you can use the first step of a ramp of stairs or a sturdy stool. Just stand in front of the step and start alternating your legs on it. Place your left leg first and then the right one, go down with the left leg first and then the right one. Keep doing this for one minute. This exercise targets your hamstrings, glutes, and quads.
Inverted Crunch – 15 repetitions
Lay down on your back with your hands by your sides and your knees bent. Push your knees toward your head until your hips slightly lift from the floor. Hold this position for one second, then lower your knees to the starting point. This exercise targets your core, lower abs, and obliques.
Mountain climber – 1 minute
Place your hands and knees on the floor, lift your knees while holding onto your hands and feet, and then alternate each leg towards a sprint-block position.
From the starting position, bring your knee to the chest with a slight hop, then alternate with the other. Perform the exercise while holding your back straight and your upper body weight with your hands.
This exercise targets your triceps, deltoids, glutes, quads, hamstrings, and calves.
Pushup – 15 repetitions
The good old pushups: place yourself on the floor facing down with the palm of your hands wide on your sides at about 45 degrees, then push yourself up while keeping your back straight and engaging your core without dropping your belly to the floor. This exercise works your pecs, deltoids, and triceps.
Burpee – 1 minute
Squat down with your hand on the floor, kick back to a pushup position and do a pushup.
When you are back into the start position, kick your legs back to your chest into the initial squat position, then jump in the air clapping your hand above your head. Do this sequence without pause or rest. This intense exercise works your arms, chest, back, and legs.
That’s it. Now de-load by taking a leisurely walk until your heart rate is back to normal and start stretching. The whole sequence should take about 10 minutes to perform, so you may want to repeat this circuit one more time for a total of 20 minutes. If you do so, rest a little longer between exercises in the second round.
You can do this workout daily or even twice a day, one in the morning and one in the evening if your goal is to burn as much fat as possible. This is a quick but effective routine to burn fat and improve your fitness which you can do anywhere at no cost. Always consult your doctor before undertaking a training regimen.
My name is Deborah Foster and I am a Weight Loss Coach with a background in Nutrition Coaching and Personal Training. I specialize in helping women and men break through the yo-yo diet cycle and lose weight for good, without being miserable in the process.