What is a circuit?
Circuits are workouts that include multiple exercises you do in a specific order. Once you complete that full list of exercises you begin the circuit again! I try to do a circuit 3-4 times through, but you should self regulate. The goal is to push your body, so if it feels too easy then keep going. Check back in the library for more difficult exercise sets.
HOW MUCH TIME FOR EACH EXERCISE?
In this circuit, I am asking you to do work (the exercise) for 30 seconds and then rest for 30 seconds. When I am in the gym I use an app called Tabata Pro to help keep time, but you can use your stopwatch timer (on your phone) or other apps such as Seconds.
HOW MUCH TIME FOR the whole circuit?
Usually trainers recommend spending about 20-30 minutes on a circuit. You should always spend about 5 minutes doing some stretching (neck, arms, legs, back), then do 10-15 minutes of light cardio before doing the circuit.
Round 1 (of 4) Beginners Circuit
Walk up one stair. Then step back down. Go at a pace that you feel comfortable with, and IF YOU HAVE KNEE ISSUES then I would suggest switching to the high knees or punching in place instead of doing stairs.
Training Tip: when you step up, make sure your whole foot is on the stair, and push up from your heel, not your toes.
This is about twisting your upper half while keeping your legs stable. Only twist as far as your body lets you without pain, and realize this exercise isn't to be rushed. The goal is NOT to get as many reps in as you physically possibly can. It is to go at a healthy pace, and overtime improve spinal/back flexibility. If this exercise causes you ANY discomfort , back off to another exercise and just do your back to stay moving.
Training Tip: put your hands on your hips to start. As you get stronger, you can also add arm lifts as you twist.
This is exactly like a "boy" pushup, without being on the ground. If you feel strong you can do this on a bench, a chair, or an open wall. The higher your hands are, the less difficult this should be. Your hands should NOT be higher than your shoulders when doing a push up.
Training Tip: when you first start, your feet should be about 1-2 feet from the wall. As you get stronger you can move your feet farther from the wall to increase the difficulty.
Stand tall, with your feet shoulder length apart and feet facing straight forward. Deep breaths. Keep your eyes straight forward. Feel your back shoulder blades squeeze tight together like they are pinching a quarter between them. As your back squeezes, bend your knees and lower your butt like you are sitting back on a public porta-potty. When you get as low as comfortable (do not make your back or knees strain on the descent), then you stand back up slowly. In the 30 seconds the goal is not to get 30 of these with poor form. THE GOAL is to get several of these with the best form you can manage in the time. Over time you will be more comfortable, stronger, and flexible which means you will be able to go deeper in the squat and get more of them done, do your best!
Training Tip: slow and controlled is the key. As you get stronger, try to get your bottom lower to the ground.
Make two fists with your hands and put the fists on top of one another. Now raise them to one of your shoulders, and chop from that shoulder to your opposite hip. (If you chop from your left shoulder, your hands should end at your right hip.) FOR ONE WHOLE ROUND, only do one side. For the next round, switch sides!
Training Tip: Breathing is really important - make sure you inhale when you raise your hands to your shoulder, and exhale as you bring the chop down to the hips.
March in place while bringing your knee to your chest. If you can't get it all the way, then just do your best. Do not slam your knee to the ground, just lift it up and put it down and then march with the next knee. This will get your heart pumping!
Training Tip: extend your arms straight out in front of you and try to bring your knees up to touch your arms each time. Slow and steady!
Punching in Place
Picture a bullseye about chest height in front of you. Now bring your hands to your chin, make fists (like boxers do!) and start punching, one hand after another. The point is NOT to punch as hard as you can, but to try and keep your arms moving controlled and fast.