By Wanita Nicol
Here’s a cool word for your fitness dictionary – metabolic finisher. It means tacking a short burst of high-intensity exercise onto the end of a regular workout. The result – you fire up your metabolism and torch fat. Yes. Please.
A metabolic finisher can be either one intense exercise or a quick series of exercises, but the key is to make it intense. You shouldn’t comfortably be able to hold a conversation while you’re doing it. If you collapse in a sweaty heap at the end while you catch your breath, you’re doing it right. That sudden intensity shocks your body out of complacency and creates the after-burn effect – where your body keeps burning kilojoules for hours after you finished your workout. Good options for metabolic finishers are moves that get your heart rate way up…think skipping, mountain climbers, burpees – and these quick toe taps.
Check out Women’s Health’s FitGIF Friday every week for fun and challenging new moves to make your sweat sesh really count. Here’s this week’s exercise:
Filmed with Mapule Ndhlovu and Aneeka Buys at Virgin Active Foreshore
You can do this move anywhere – it’s a great one for the park – or home because all you need is a step or bench. Once you’ve finished your workout, stand facing your bench, two or three steps away. Lift one foot and tap the edge of the bench with your toe, then do the same with the other foot. The idea is you want to hop as quickly as you can from one foot to the other. Continue going as fast as you can for 20 seconds, then rest for 10 seconds. Repeat for a total of 8 rounds.
Make it easier: Use a lower step.
Make it harder: Use a higher step. For extra oomph, pump your arms back and forth at the same time.
Be sure to land softly with your knee slightly bent to absorb the impact.
Looking for more power moves? Check out last week’s Fit GIF exercise… the deadlift.