If you need to burn calories and shed a little fat to tone up your beach body as temperatures continue to warm for the summer, there is a simple (but challenging!), three-movement exercise program that can get you into shape, fast.
Try this 300-repetition workout from Men’s Health that you can do from home with very little equipment that promises to “scorch through calories” in a full-blown assault on your metabolism.
The program consists of three basic push, pull, and explode movements designed to hit muscles throughout your entire body, kickstart your metabolism and burn through calories. You will do three sets of each type of exercise.
“This [workout is] a combination of controlled tempo movements and movements that allow you to be more explosive, but don’t rush through the burpees and blow yourself out,” writes Men’s Health Fitness editor Andrew Tracey.
In total, you’ll perform 300 reps, decreasing repetitions with each set.
Using nothing but a set of dumbbells, the program includes these three movements:
- Push: Dumbbell pushups – Round 1= 70 reps, Round 2= 50 reps, Round 3= 30 reps
- Pull: Renegade dumbbell rows – Round 1= 50 reps, Round 2= 30 reps, Round 3= 20 reps
- Explode: Dumbbell burpees – Round 1= 25 reps, Round 2= 15 reps, Round 3= 5 reps
All three movements require a single set of dumbbells. Using the dumbbells for your pushups allows a fuller stretch on the chest. The pull movement will work your core as well as your back to keep yourself stable during the movement, and the burpees bring in your lower body.
Your posture is important.
“Keep your posture sharp on the dumbbell burpees; we’re trying to be explosive to make light weights feel heavy for your bigger leg muscles,” says Tracey. “Keep your head up and back straight, so that your lower back doesn’t catch any flak.”
If you are new to fitness, remember to play it safe and resist over-exerting yourself too quickly. The Mayo Clinic advises you to assess your fitness level before jumping in. “You probably have some idea of how fit you are. But assessing and recording baseline fitness scores can give you benchmarks against which to measure your progress.”
Mayo recommends recording your body mass index and waist circumference to help you monitor and track your fitness progress. Your body mass index is a measurement of fat on your body relative to your weight and height. The National Institute of Health has an easy-to-use calculator to help estimate your BMI.
“Give yourself plenty of time to warm up and cool down with easy walking or gentle stretching,” Mayo advised. Then, slowly increase your intensive as your fitness level allows.
“Listen to your body. If you feel pain, shortness of breath, dizziness, or nausea, take a break. You may be pushing yourself too hard.”