This At-Home Workout Targets Every Angle For A Total-Body Transformation
Forget raising the bar – put your feet up, woman! Your at-home workout just got…different. “Lifting them onto a step or bench is the simplest way to build strength faster,” says strength and conditioning specialist Don Bahneman. It boils down to basic physics: for upper-body exercises, this tweak changes the angle of the exercise and forces your muscles to work harder to support your body weight.
For lower-body moves, raising your feet increases how far you have to move with every rep (aka your range of motion), which calls more muscle fibres into action. And for all moves, your core has to work harder to keep you stable and locked into position.
Complete the exercises in this at-home workout in order…
Move from one to the next without resting. Rest 45 to 60 seconds at the end of the circuit, then repeat for up to five rounds. Feeling extra fired up for your at-home workout? Increase the cardio challenge by adding 30 seconds of star jumps or running in place between each move. Get the best out of your chill with this couch workout.
1. Bulgarian split squat
Stand about 60 centimetres in front of your couch and extend your left leg behind you, placing the top of your foot on the seat (A). Keeping your chest upright and core tight, bend both knees to lower your hips as much as you can (B). Push through your right heel to return to start. That’s one rep. Do eight to 12, then repeat on the other side.
2. Travelling plank with leg raise
Get into push-up position with your toes on the couch (A). Raise your right arm and rotate your torso to the right until your feet are stacked and your body forms a T. Without dropping your hips, lift your right leg (B). Hold for 20 seconds. Reverse the movement to return to start and hold for 20 seconds, then repeat on the other side.
3. Single-leg hip thrust
Lie on your back on the floor in front of your couch with your left heel on the edge, knee bent about 90 degrees and your right leg straight up, arms at your sides (A). Press through your left heel and raise your hips as high as possible, keeping your right foot in the air (B). Slowly lower your hips back down. That’s one rep. Do eight to 12, then repeat on the other side.
4. Reverse inch worm
Get into push-up position with your toes on the couch (A). Bracing your core and glutes, slowly walk your hands towards the couch, lifting your hips into the air and keeping your legs as straight as possible (B). Pause, then walk your hands back out to start. Make it harder by adding a push-up here. That’s one rep. Do four to eight.
Excerpted from the Women’s Health Little Book of 15-Minute Workouts – score the entire book when you buy your April issue of Women’s Health magazine, on shelves now. Note: This does not apply to digital copies of the mag.