Hill Pyramid Workout with Strength Training Tabatas

Hill Repeat Workout with Strength Training Tabatas (focusing on core and upper body)Hello from Maine! I’m up at my parents’ place enjoying a final morning of beautiful views before heading back down to Boston. There’s no phone service up here and I only get wifi at a couple places in town so it’s a forced unplugging that I need once in a while. 🙂

Hill Repeat Pyramid with Strength Training Tabatas

The running part of this workout is as hard as you make it–if your hill is long/steep, it’ll be a doozy. If you want more of a quick cardio blast in between the tabatas, pick an easier hill length/grade. I did this outside in the North End between teaching classes Friday on a short but steep hill (it probably took me 25 strides to get from the bottom to the top).

The hill sets get shorter and shorter as you go. First set = 5 repeats; next set = 4 repeats; all the way down to one. Sprint up the hill and jog down. If you’re doing this on a treadmill, you’d just reduce the incline and speed in between each sprint.

In between each hill set, you’ll do a tabata superset that focuses on the core and upper body. A tabata is 8 rounds of 20 seconds work and 10 seconds rest. You’ll alternate between two exercises in each tabata. For example, 20 seconds of marching plank, rest 10 seconds, 20 seconds of push ups, rest, and so on for a total of 4 minutes. Full detailed breakdown below the image.

Hill Repeat Workout with Strength Training Tabatas (focusing on core and upper body)

HILL REPEATS x5

TABATA 1

  • Marching Plank | You’re essentially just moving from low plank to high plank, up and down. Starting in a forearm plank position, press up into a high plank, one hand at a time. Reverse the movement when you’re in a high plank, lowering onto one forearm at a time.
  • Push Ups | I’m working on push ups with my hands close to my body rather than wide (because I’m bad at them and they need improving!) so I did them like this: Start in a plank position with your hands stacked underneath your shoulders. From here, roll forward slightly onto your toes so that your hands are now a little further back, aligned with your ribs (this will allow you to bend elbows to 90 degrees). Keeping your elbows close to your body, lower down to a low push up position and then press through your hands to rise back up, straightening your arms.

HILL REPEATS x4

TABATA 2

  • Full-body Crunch | Start laying on your back with legs outstretched and hovering a couple inches off the ground. Arms should be outstretched overhead and hovering as well. From this starting position, crunch up, bringing your knees in towards your chest as you wrap your arms around your knees like a wide hug. Extend back out, lowering to starting position. The goal is to never bring the legs to rest on the ground when you extend back out.
  • Triceps Pulses | Start sitting down with legs outstretched and palms pressed to the ground by your sides. From here, press into your heels to lift your butt up a couple inches and forward a couple inches so that there’s space for you to bend into your elbows, pulsing your body up and down. Keep your elbows pointing straight back when you do these; don’t let them bow out to the sides.

HILL REPEATS x3

TABATA 3

  • Forearm Plank | Most of us are familiar with a plank, so just a couple form queues: think of stacking your joints, elbows directly below shoulders. Pull the lower abdomen in to protect the low back (think of pulling up your jeans’ zipper). Squeeze the quads above the knees—notice how engaging these muscles helps straighten out your body even more. Tuck the tailbone slightly and then fire up the entire abdomen by pulling the forearms and balls of feel in towards each other (you won’t actually move, you’ll just contract the muscles). Need more explanation? I did a whole post on common plank form errors).
  • Low Push Up Hold | For this, I want your hands close in to the sides of your body (tricep push up). To get into the hold with proper alignment, start in a plank position with your hands stacked underneath your shoulders. From here, roll forward slightly onto your toes so that your hands are now a little further back, aligned with your ribs (this will allow you to bend elbows to 90 degrees). Keeping your elbows close to your body, lower down to a low push up position and hold there with your body hovering off the ground, abs held in tight.Modify by holding the push up from your knees. Just make sure your hips are still lowered so that your butt isn’t sticking up into the air. Think of lowering from your knees rather than your hips to achieve this.

HILL REPEATS x2

TABATA 4

  • Mountain Sliders (alternate) | Start in a plank position with wrists aligned underneath shoulders, abs engaged and spine straight. From here, lift your right leg and bend your right knee in towards your right wrist, making physical contact if possible. From this starting position, you’re going to slide your knee up and down your arm, zipping it towards your armpit as you pull your abs in and round your back slightly up towards the ceiling (think of a mini-cat stretch) and then sliding it back down to the wrist. At the bottom, you want the knee at a hover; try not to rest it on the floor. The goal is to keep the knee lightly touching your arm the whole time, but just keep the knee pulled in as close to the arm as possible.
  • Side V-Ups (alternate) | Start laying on your side, balancing on that bottom hip/side butt area with your bottom hand on the floor in front of you for support. Top arm is bent with hand behind your head and elbow out wide; legs should be extended and hovering off the ground. This is your starting position. From here, you’re going to crunch up and in, bending your legs and bringing your knees in towards your top elbow as you lift your torso up and in to meet them. Use that bottom hand for support, but try to push off it minimally. Slowly lower back down and extend back out to a hover.

HILL REPEATS x1

Get 15% Off My Outfit with code PUMPS15

Hill Repeat Workout with Strength Training Tabatas (focusing on core and upper body)The leggings and sweatshirt I’m wearing in today’s post were given to me by my friends at ALALA (. I love them! This is my second pair of their leggings and the fit and function are great. The material is shinier (more spandex-y, if you will) than, for example, Lululemon leggings, so they’re great for sweaty workouts. You only need to be traumatized by butt sweat showing up in a group fitness class once to agree with me that this is an important detail to include in an activewear review. I’d finish that sentence with a “LOL” or “haha” but I’m currently having flashbacks to the time I taught a row class in dark pink Fabletics leggings …

(I really like Fabletics leggings BTW, but for yoga and Pilates–would only wear the *black* ones for cardio).

Anyway, ALALA performance aside, the design is so on-trend. The print with sheer panels on the leggings is perfect and THE FISHNET THUMB HOLES on the hoodie–don’t even get me started. I feel like I’m both a trendy fitness instructor and an 80’s rock band member.

ALALA skews on the pricier side of the athleticwear spectrum, so I’m excited to give you all a code for 15% off: PUMPS15 Hill Repeat Workout with Strength Training Tabatas (focusing on core and upper body) Hill Repeat Workout with Strength Training Tabatas (focusing on core and upper body)

Enjoy the last bit of your long weekend for all those who have the day off today!

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Tabata “Jacks” Workout

Tabata "Jacks" Workout -- this tabata workout will take you 16 minutes in total. Each set of exercises includes a "jack" (jumping jack, plank jacks, squat jacks, etc.)I’ve got a new workout for all you tabata lovers! “Jacks” = jumping, so this one will get your heart rate up. All you’ll need is a weight, and even that could be worked around if you don’t have access to equipment.

Tabata “Jacks” Workout

Equipment I Used:

A tabata is 8 rounds of 20 seconds of work and 10 seconds of rest (so a total of 4 minutes long). In this workout, you’ll be alternating between two exercises for each tabata. When you finish one, move onto the next tabata set. In total, this workout will take you 16 minutes (plus rest) to complete. Tabata "Jacks" Workout -- this tabata workout will take you 16 minutes in total. Each set of exercises includes a "jack" (jumping jack, plank jacks, squat jacks, etc.)

TABATA SET 1

  • PUSH UP JACKS | For this push up variation, start in a plank position with your hands a little wider than shoulder width. As you bend your elbows and lower, jump your feet out wide (like a jumping jack). From your lowest point, press back up, straightening your arms and jumping your feet back together in starting position. These movement should be explosive. Jack wide at the same time you lower down with the arms, catching yourself in a wide low push up. Explosively jump feet and press back up together.
  • FULL-BODY CRUNCHES WITH DUMBBELL | Start laying on your back with legs outstretched and hovering a couple inches off the ground. Holding a weight in your hands, arms should be outstretched overhead and hovering as well. From this starting position, crunch up, bringing your knees in towards your chest as you lift your shoulder blades off the ground and bring the weight up and over towards your shins. Extend back out, lowering to starting position. The goal is to never bring the legs and/or weight to rest on the ground when you extend back out.

TABATA SET 2

  • SQUAT JACKS WITH OBLIQUE SCOOPS | For the low body, think jumping jacks in a squat position. For the upper body, think paddling a canoe. This one can be like rubbing your stomach while patting your head, so don’t be frustrated if it feels uncoordinated at first—you can always eliminate the upper body movement and just hold the weight at your chest as you jump your feet in and out.Start in a low squat position with feet wide, weight in your heels, low abs engaged, hips back and a dumbbell held at your chest with both hands. Staying low in a squat, jump your feet in close together as you scoop the dumbbell down and around to the left of your left leg. As the weight comes up and back to center, jump your feet out wide again to the starting position. Repeat, this time scooping the dumbbell down and around to the right side of your legs as you jump them close together. The goal is to stay low in a squat as you jack your feet in and out, fluidly scooping the dumbbell side to side like a figure eight or canoe oar.
  • LUNGE STOMPS | Start in a low lunge position with your right foot forward, knee bent at 90 degrees and stacked directly over your ankle. Ball of the left foot is planted on the floor behind you, leg is long but knee is soft. To make these harder, hold a dumbbell at your chest; otherwise, just use your bodyweight (it’ll still be challenging—I promise!). From here, you’re going to press off the right heel as you shift your weight into the back left foot enough to lift your right foot off the ground, slightly kicking it forward in the air before landing back down in that starting low lunge position. The slight outward kick will help you land in a knee-safe position with the right heel stacked under the knee (you don’t want the knee to ever be farther forward than the toes). Switch the front foot each 20-second work interval (so in total you’ll do each side twice throughout the tabata).The pictures in this post aren’t the best visual of this move so if you’re new I’d look at this older post (better angle with the pics).

TABATA SET 3

  • JUMPING JACKS WITH CHEST-TO-OVERHEAD PRESS | With your low body, you’re doing a jumping jack. With your upper body, you’re alternating between a front chest and overhead press. Start standing with feet together holding a weight at its ends close to your chest. Jump your feet out wide and as you do press the dumbbell straight forward in a chest press. As you jump the feet back together, bring the weight back in towards your chest. Next time you jump your feet out wide, press the dumbbell straight up overhead. Continue the pattern going as quickly as possible without sacrificing form.
  • FRONT RAISE PULSES | Holding your dumbbell at the ends with palms facing each other, extend your arm straight out in front of you at chest height. Make sure there’s a soft bend in your knees, your core is engaged (think of “closing” your rib cage) and your shoulder blades are slightly squeezed together to open the chest. From here, pulse the weight up a couple inches and down a couple inches, keeping it right around chest height. Try not to drop the arms during the 20 seconds of work.

TABATA SET 4

  • FOREARM PLANK JACKS | Start in a forearm plank position with elbows aligned underneath shoulders. Jump feet out to the sides (like a horizontal jumping jack) and quickly back together. Try to hold a strong plank alignment with your upper body as you jump the feet out and in—don’t let your butt pike up into the air or hips sag downward.
  • BURPEES | Start standing, feet about shoulder-width apart. Squat down, bringing your hands to the ground by your feet and jump both feet back into a plank position. Quickly jump your feet back up by your hands and shift the weight into your feet, bring torso upright into a low squat position. From here, jump up, arms overhead. Land softly on your feet, sinking right back down into a squat and starting from the top.

Tabata "Jacks" Workout -- this tabata workout will take you 16 minutes in total. Each set of exercises includes a "jack" (jumping jack, plank jacks, squat jacks, etc.)

WEARING | leggings + bra (sold out but also love this one) c/o Forever21 // Onzie tank (sold out but also love this one) // Nike sneakers // Stephie ChicLokai & Alex + Ani bracelets

Any requests for workout structure/equipment/target area? I’m creating some new ones to shoot next week and would love to hear from you! 

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15-Minute At-Home Bodyweight Workout

15-Minute Bodyweight Workout -- perfect to do at home!Today’s workout is a great one to do at home when you’re short on time. I figure with holiday travel coming up, it can’t hurt to have a no-equipment-needed routine in your arsenal. 🙂

15-Minute At-Home Bodyweight Workout

Set an interval timer for 15 rounds of 45 sec work and 15 sec rest. You’ll go through the following circuit three times. 15-Minute Bodyweight Workout -- perfect to do at home!

Lunge Hop Mountain Climbers (right foot forward)

This is a great compound exercise. Start in a split-stance lunge position: both knees bent to 90 degrees, one foot flat in front; one foot in back, ball of the foot planted on the ground. Keeping the same foot in front/back, you hop a few inches into the air and land softly back into your starting position. Your legs are never fully straightening during this; it’s a small upward hop, pushing off the balls of the feet.

Staying low in the lunge, hinge forward, bringing your hands to the ground on either side of your right foot. Hover that right foot off the ground so that you’re in a plank position with the left foot planted and the right knee in towards your chest. Do a mountain climber, driving the left knee forward and then the right knee forward so that you’re back in the starting plank position. Place the right foot back on the floor and shift your bodyweight into it as you lift your torso upright, back into your original low lunge position.

Twisted Push Up to Side Plank Rotation (right oblique)

From the waist up, you’ll be in a push up position: hands on the ground a little wider than shoulder width apart, chest square to the ground. From the waist down, you’ll be in a side plank with the left foot stacked on top of the right. It’s important that the twist is from the waist; you want equal weight in both hands. From here, you’ll do a push up, engaging that right oblique to keep your body in a straight line as you lower the chest towards the ground and then press up, straightening your arms. At the top, shift all your weight into the right hand and open your left arm up to the ceiling as you rotate open into a brief side plank. Pause and then bring the left hand back to the ground to your starting position.

Rolling Jump Squats

This is a dynamic, fluid exercise. Start standing with feet about hip’s width apart and begin to lower down into a squat, weight in your heels. Lower all the way down to sit on your bum and immediately start to roll backwards onto the ground, bringing your knees into your chest, butt lifting off the ground as the low, mid, then upper back bears your weight. When your body’s momentum stops, reverse the roll, coming explosively forward and planting your feet on the ground so that you can lift up into a low squat and continue to jump upward off the floor. Land softly, bending your knees and sinking right back down into your next rep.

Twisted Push Up to Side Plank Rotation(left oblique)

Lunge Hop Mountain Climbers (left foot forward) Champion outfit

WEARING | sweatshirt & leggings c/o Champion

I got the chance to work with Champion in styling this workout outfit and am obsessed with the sweatshirt! In addition to basics, they’ve got some fun patterns (love my leggings!) and on-trend styles. In addition to browsing their website, you can follow Champion on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram & Pinterest.

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This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Champion. The opinions and text are all mine.