Burpees: Maybe you love them, maybe you hate them, but are you even doing them correctly? For a quick workout, burpees target the legs, butt, chest, and shoulders, all while accelerating the heart rate for maximum calorie burn, says Adam Rosante, certified CFT and specialist in fitness nutrition and CrossFit Level 1 Trainer. To properly perform a burpee, stand with feet hip-width apart. Crouch down and place your hands on the floor directly under your shoulders, then jump your feet back to land in a push-up, or plank, position. Be sure to lower your entire body to the floor, then press back up to the starting push-up position and hop the feet forward, returning to the original crouched position. “Explosively jump straight up, clapping the hands overhead,” Rosante says. “Land softly and repeat.” To modify this powerful move, step your feet back, one at a time, into the plank position. Drop your knees to the floor before lowering your body and then step the feet forward, one at a time, to return to the crouched position. Stand straight up and rise onto the balls of your feet, then clap your hands overhead to complete the first movement. Be sure to steer clear of these fitness moves that work against you.
Squats are also a full-body movement, engaging your core while strengthening your glutes and quads. Robin Arzon, an RRCA certified running coach, NASM certified personal trainer, and Schwinn spin instructor, says to relax your upper body and keep your shoulders away from your ears. Stand with your feet spread, shoulder-width distance apart, and begin to engage your core and bring your hips back. Sit back as if you were aiming for a chair that was 90 degrees or lower. “You don’t want to overextend your lower back, [as to] protect your spinal column,” she says. “You want to get below the 90 degree angle with your hips and glutes to really fully activate your glutes and quads.” Your weight should be closer to the balls of your heel, so that you could wiggle your toes at the bottom of the move. This enables you to push yourself back up. To make this quick workout move more challenging, hold a weight in your hands.