Medicine Ball Pyramid Workout

Medicine Ball Pyramid WorkoutI haven’t worked out with my good ol’ pink med ball in a while, so the other day, after a 3-mile run outside, I decided to do a quick pyramid workout with it. I think it’s probably time to invest in a heavier ball (8 or 10lbs) because my 6lb-er isn’t feeling like enough for certain exercises, but this was still the perfect strength training routine to compliment my cardio.

Before we get to the workout breakdown, I have to give Jackie from PrettyFit Athletics a big thanks for the fun SUCK IT UP tank I’m wearing in today’s post! Not only does it match my medicine ball, but I love the kiss print detail on the back. Check out her Etsy shop for other cute workout tanks—she even has a Boston Still Strong one that benefits the One Fund!

Medicine Ball Pyramid Workout

Equipment I Used:

  • 6-lb medicine ball
  • Exercise mat

You’ll start by doing 10 reps of each exercise in the circuit. Next, you’ll do 9 reps of each. Next round, 8—and so on and so on down to 1 rep of each exercise. In between each round you’ll hold a med ball plank for 30 seconds.

10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1…

Medicine Ball Pyramid Workout

  • V-Up Split Crunches with the Med Ball: Start laying on your back with arms overhead holding the medicine ball.  Engage your core to lift your legs and arms hovering off the floor a couple inches. This is your starting position. Squeezing your abs, lift your legs straight up and out to the sides as you crunch your upper body up, reaching the medicine ball between your legs. Return to starting position, lowering upper and lower body and bringing med ball back behind your head. The goal is to keep constant tension on the abs and never let the med ball or your feet come to rest on the floor between reps.
  • Forward Lunge with Torso Twist (right): Start standing with feet hip-width apart holding med ball at chest. Step forward, lunging onto your right foot, bending both knees to 90 degrees. As you step forward, press the ball out in front of you, straightening your arms. From here, keeping arms straight and med ball extended, twist your torso to the right. Reverse the motion back to standing. That’s one rep.
  • Forward Lunge with Torso Twist (left)
  • Shoulder Press Toss, Catch & Dip: Standing with feet hip-width apart holding med ball at chest, toss ball straight up overhead, pushing through with both hands. Catch the ball, softening the catch by bringing it back to chest height. Press ball overhead and then do a triceps dip with the ball, dipping it behind your head, keeping elbows in tight to the side of your head as you do so. Extend med ball back up overhead, bring it down to chest height. This is one rep. Start from the top with the toss. (This is the one exercises I wished I had a heavier med ball for.)
  • Med Ball Squat Jacks: These are essentially jumping jacks in a squatting position. Start with legs a little more than shoulder-width apart in a squat position, holding medicine ball mid-torso. Jump legs together (remaining in a squat position) and reach medicine ball down and to the left of your feet. Jump back into starting position, then alternate, jumping legs together and reaching medicine ball down and to the right of your feet. One to the right + one to the left = 1 rep.
  • 30-second Incline Med Ball Plank: Balancing your feet on the medicine ball, hold a plank position, hands aligned underneath shoulders. If this bothers your wrists, come onto your forearms.

Suck It Up tankWEARING | tank: c/o PrettyFit Athletics // leggings: c/o Champion // sneakers: Nike Free +3

Taking pictures for this workout tutorial has made me realize how desperately I’m in need of a tan. I’m over the Edward Cullen look–hurry up, summer!!

Have a great day, everyone!


10 Burpee Variations

10 Burpee Variations (plus workouts using each move!)

Love ‘em or hate ‘em, you can’t deny that burpees are effective. The infamous exercise targets the major muscle groups while getting your heart rate up, and can be customized and tweaked a million different ways. To target different muscle groups, I like to add in side jumps, knee tucks, crunches, push ups—you name it, and I’ve probably tried to incorporate it into a burpee.

I rounded up 10 different burpee variations—eight that you’ve probably seen around P&I before and two new (to the blog) burpee exercises that I’m looking forward to throwing in the mix soon. Burpees are brutal enough without adding boredom to the mix, so try some of these fun (questionable adjective choice?? haha) variations during your next workout.


Side Burpees

side-burpeesHOW TO DO IT

This is a traditional burpee except you’re jumping your feet laterally out to the side instead of back into a plank position. Full sequence is: squat down with hands on ground, jump both feet out to the side in a lateral plank position, jump both feet back in, stand back up into squat position, jump up with hands overhead.


Jump Tuck Burpees

Knee Tuck Jump BurpeesHOW TO DO IT

Regular burpee, only instead of jumping straight up with arms overhead, jump up, tucking your knees up mid-air to touch your hands. Sequence looks like this: squat down, hands on mat, jump feet back into plank position, jump feet back up towards hands into a deep squat position, power up, tucking knees to slap hands mid-air, land back in that deep squat position.


Starburst Burpees

Starburst BurpeesHOW TO DO IT

Squat down, place hands wide apart on floor, jump back into a plank position with legs spread apart. Do a push up. Jump legs back up into squatting position. Jump up into the air with arms and legs outstretched.


Competition Burpees

Competition BurpeesHOW TO DO IT

In this burpee variation, you lower yourself all the way down to the ground instead of a plank position, and then you push up, springing to your feet in one fluid motion. Imagine the way a surfer goes from laying on the board to on his feet—it’s that same kind of fluid jump movement. So the full burpee looks like this: squat down, hands on floor, jump back into plank position and immediately lower chest onto floor, spring back up into low squatting position, jump up with arms reaching overhead.


Med Ball Burpees

Med Ball BurpeesHOW TO DO IT

This is a regular burpee, only holding on to a medicine ball the whole time. Squat down, placing medicine ball on the ground in front of you, carefully jump back into a plank position, jump back up to squatting, then stand up and jump with your arms (and medicine ball) in the air.


Side Burpees with Knee Tuck

Side Burpees with Knee CrunchHOW TO DO IT

Squat down, hands on mat, jump both feet out laterally to the side, crunch top knee up towards elbow, jump both feet back in towards hands, stand up into squat position, jump up with arms overhead.


One-Leg Burpees with Lateral Jumps

One Leg Lateral Jump BurpeesHOW TO DO IT

This is a regular burpee, except you do it on one foot and jump laterally instead of up. Sequence looks like this: stand on one foot, squat down, hands on ground, jump one foot back into plank position (keeping other foot raised), jump foot back up towards hands, stand up into squat position, put raised foot back on ground and jump (with both feet) to the side, as if you’re jumping laterally over an object. When you land, do the same thing, but alternate the leg which you do it on, and when it comes time to jump, jump laterally in the other direction.


Burpees with a Push Up

Burpees with a Push UpHOW TO DO IT

This is a traditional burpee except that you’ll complete a pushup when you’re down in the plank position.



Yoga Flow Burpees

Yoga Flow BurpeesHOW TO DO IT

A burpee-Vinyasa hybrid move. One yoga flow burpee rep looks like this: squat down, place hands on ground by feet, jump feet back out into high plank position. Lower slowly into low plank position, keeping elbows in tight to sides. Come to upward dog. Push back into downward dog. Return to high plank. Jump both feet up towards hands, stand up and jump up with arms overhead.

Can’t wait to add this bad boy in a workout soon!

P.S. Refrain from laughing at my form—I’m still a yoga newbie! :)

Walking Burpees

Walking BurpeesHOW TO DO IT

After you’ve jumped your feet back into a plank position, you’ll walk your hands and feet laterally to one side then back in the opposite direction. So the full burpee sequence looks like this: squat down, place hands on ground by feet, jump feet back out into plank position, lift right hand and foot off the ground, stepping them out to the side. Bring your left hand and foot in to meet them. Lift left foot and hand off the ground, stepping them out to the side. Bring your right hand and foot in to meet them, returning to your original plank position. Jump both feet in towards hand, come up onto feet in a squat position, and finish by jumping up with arms overhead.

Be on the lookout for this one in upcoming workouts!


Ok now I want to hear from you—what other burpee variations have you done in workouts? What’s your favorite way to do a burpee? Which variation do you think is the hardest?


30-Minute Bodyweight AMRAP Workout

30-Minute Bodyweight AMRAP WorkoutIt’s time for the fourth and final weekly workout challenge giveaway—where has the month gone?? These AMRAP posts have been so fun for me because it’s the first time I’ve been able to gauge how many people actually do all these silly workouts I post every week. Most people don’t feel compelled to comment on my posts each and every time they try something from P&I (I know I wouldn’t haha), so for all I know, I’ve just been making pretty tutorials to decorate Pinterest boards with these past two years. I’ve LOVED reading all the comments from readers who tried the workouts this month.

You know the drill by now, but I’ll just reiterate that everyone who completes this workout by Sunday evening will be able to enter to win this week’s prize package. It doesn’t matter how many rounds you get through–everyone has an equal chance of winner. I’ll post the giveaway entry post later today–get excited, it’s a big one!

30-Minute Bodyweight AMRAP Workout

Set a timer for 30 minutes and complete as many rounds of the following circuit as possible.

30-Minute Bodyweight AMRAP Workout

  • 10 Jump Lunge to Mountain Climbers: Start in a lunge position and jump up, landing with opposite leg in front, back in a lunge position. Place hands flat on ground and do a mountain climber set (one on each side) so that the same foot ends up in front. Stand back up into lunge position. That’s one rep.
  • 10 Breakdance Planks (each side): Start in a plank position. Step your right foot up and out to the side. Bring your left foot across your body, in between your right hand and right foot. Lift your right hand into the air as you twist your body, thrusting your hips up towards the ceiling as you shift your weight onto that left hand. Think of the motion as weaving your left foot through the right side. Reverse the motion back into a plank position. See the exercise in action HERE if you’re reading this like whaaat is this chick talking about (it’s a tough one to explain!).
  • 20 Alternating Sumo Squat Jump Leg Lifts: Squat down, legs wide apart and butt back. Jump up, landing back in starting position. Shift your weight to your left leg and kick your right leg straight out to the side, staying low the hold time. Return to starting position. Repeat, only lifting left leg after your next jump squat.
  • 20 Leg Lifts to Butt Lifts: Laying on your back with hands under your bum for support, lift legs off so that they’re hovering off the ground. Lift them  up, perpendicular to the ground (keeping them straight the whole time) and then lift your butt off the ground, thrusting your feet up towards the ceiling. Lower butt to ground, and then lower legs back down to starting hovering position.

30-Minute Bodyweight AMRAP Workout

WEARING | top: Lululemon // leggings: Nike // sneakers: c/o PUMA

I got through 7 and a half rounds. Seven full rounds and was just about to start the sumo jump squats in the 8th when the timer went off. By the end my quads were on fire! See if you can beat my time!