Bodyweight Superset Pyramid Workout

Bodyweight Superset Pyramid Workout - perfect for doing at home!I typically don’t hate on Mondays, but Nantucket was so much fun it’s kinda depressing to see the weekend come to an end. Oh well, I’ve got another wedding to look forward to this coming weekend, so life is good. :)

This is another great workout to do at home (or anywhere) because no equipment is required. You’ll just need a bench or chair—anything you can step up onto. I love the pyramid superset structure because it makes workouts seem like they’re flying by. Quick bursts of work, rest, and onto the next two exercises.

Bodyweight Superset Pyramid Workout

Complete each superset as quickly as possible. You’ll do 10 reps of each of the two exercises, then 9 then 8, all the way down to 1 rep of each. Finish one superset before moving onto the next. Rest for 30-60 seconds in between each superset.

Record your times for completing each superset so that you can revisit this workout later and try to beat your first performance! Bodyweight Superset Pyramid Workout - perfect for doing at home!

SUPERSET 1

  • Logger Jumps | Start with your hands planted on a bench/stepper/chair and your body positioned off to one side (pretend there’s an object extending out in the middle that you will have to jump over). Jump both feet up into the air, shifting your bodyweight into your hands and kicking your feet up and over to land on the other “side” of that pretend object. As soon as your feet hit the ground, bounce off them, up and over back to the starting side. Continue jumping side to side, up and over, aiming to get a little hang time in the air.
  • Step Ups (each leg) | Start with one foot planted on a stepper, bench or chair. This will be your base leg: keep it planted on the stepper with the majority of your bodyweight in that heel through the duration of the exercise. As you step up, lift your back knee up, driving it into your chest at the top. Lower back down, lightly touching your back foot to the floor before driving powerfully right back up.

SUPERSET 2

  • Hand Release Push Ups | I love these because they work the front and backside of your body. Start in a plank position and begin to bend your elbows as if you were doing a push up, but instead lower your body all the way to the ground. From here, lift your chest and hands off the ground, squeezing your upper back. Lower your hands back down to the ground by your rib cage and press your body back up into a high plank position.
  • Jump Tucks | Jump up into the air, using your core to pull your knees up towards your chest. Lower them quickly in time to land. You’ll want to bend your knees, sinking into a squat to prep for the jump, and you’ll land this same way, sinking into a squat to absorb the landing. As you jump up bring your hands in front of your rib cage and try to hit them with your knees. These are tiring—try to do as many in a row as you can; if you need to slow down the pace, add in a little hop or two in between each one.

SUPERSET 3

  • Spiderman Mountain Climbers | Start in a plank-lunge position with the right foot planted on the floor on the outside of the right hand. Jump both feet up, momentarily shifting all your weight into the hands, and land back in a plank with the left foot outside the left hand. Continue alternating back and forth. Beginners: instead of jumping, step your right foot up towards the right hand, step it back to plank, then repeat on the left.
  • Lunge Hops (each side) | 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.

SUPERSET 4

  • Starburst Burpees | Start standing, feet about shoulder-width apart. Squat down, bringing your hands to the ground by your feet and jump both feet back out wide into a spread-eagle plank position. Do a push up. Quickly jump your feet back in and up by your hands and shift the weight into your feet, bring torso upright into a low squat position. From here, jump up, arms and legs outstretched into the air. Think about really opening up the front side of your body in the air. Land softly on your feet, sinking right back down into a squat and starting from the top.
  • In ‘N Out Crunches | Start in a seated position balancing on your tailbone, hands lightly on the ground by your side for support, feet lifted off the ground and torso leaning back, core engaged. Extend your legs out straight in front of you as you lean back further (feet should be hovering), and then crunch everything inward, bringing your knees into your chest and sitting up a little straighter, abs in tight. Extend legs back out straight to a hover and then separate them out wide, keeping them straight. Bring them back to center and repeat: crunch in, extend out, spread wide, bring back in together.

If you want to make this one harder, do them with your arms overhead: Bodyweight Superset Pyramid Workout - perfect for doing at home!

WEARING | leggings & tank c/o Fabletics // Nike sneakers

Sometimes I’ll use this structure in group fitness classes and have everyone stop after the first three people have completed a superset. This way there isn’t a huge discrepancy in how long everyone is resting, and beginners don’t feel pressured to finish as quickly as the more advanced students. It’s fun because there’s a bit of a race element for those who are competitive.

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20-Minute Workout for Better Posture (Upper Back & Shoulders)

20-Minute Workout for Better Posture (targets upper back and shoulders)I hope everyone had a great holiday weekend! As I mentioned in Friday’s post, the plan was to spend the 4th of July in Newport, but Joe and I ended up drinking some beer by our pool on Friday and a couple drinks quickly turned into … definitely can’t operate a motor vehicle to Newport (LOL). We stayed in Boston all weekend and it was unexpected, but a blast. Perfect mix of fun (pool time & drinks) and relaxation (10pm bedtimes & Locked Up Abroad season 5 on Netflix … I know, I know, you’re jealous). I got a wonderful 4-mile run in yesterday morning around the river, but other than that we just hung out with friends and enjoyed a quieter city. charles-river-boston-skyline charles-white-pool-selfieImproving my posture has been a focus of mine lately, so in addition to stretching my shoulders and practicing chest-opening yoga poses, I’ve been trying to incorporate upper back strengthening exercises into my workouts. Over the past couple months, I’ve actually noticed a difference, which is awesome. In holding positions like Chair Pose, for example, I can keep my arms by my ears with more ease–little victories!

Today’s workout is made up of some of my favorite exercises for targeting all those good posture-building muscles.

20-Minute Workout for Better Posture

Equipment I Used:

This workout is broken up into three sections. For each section, you’ll complete three sets of three exercises, performed for 3o seconds each. Rest for 15-30 sections between sets. Rest for 30-60 seconds between sections.

20-Minute Workout for Better Posture (targets upper back and shoulders)

SECTION 1 | Kettlebell

Do each exercise for 30 seconds, back-to-back with no rest in between. When you’ve completed all three (90 seconds of work), rest for 15-30 seconds. Repeat twice more for a total of three sets.

  • High Pull (right) | Stand tall, feet about hip-width apart, with the kettlebell on the ground in front of you to one side. Squat down, weight in your heels, grabbing the kettlebell with one hand. This is your starting position. From here, power up to a standing position using your legs. As you do, pull the kettlebell straight up by your armpit, leading with the elbow. Bring the kettlebell back down to the ground softly, tapping it to the floor and going right into your next rep.
  • High Pull (left) 
  • Kettlebell Swing Punches | This exercise just adds a punch to your standard kettlebell swing. Start with kettlebell on the floor between your legs and lift it up to starting position with both hands, flat back, using your legs to lift. With kettlebell hanging between your legs, use your arms as a pendulum, and swing the bell to chest-to-eye level by thrusting with your hips while keeping your core tight as you stand up straight. As the bell reaches the top of the swing, bend your elbows out wide to bring it in towards your chest. Immediately punch it back out and swing back down. Your knees are bent at the bottom, but keep in mind the main source of movement is hinging at the hips—not so much squatting.

SECTION 2 | Dumbbells

Do each exercise for 30 seconds, back-to-back with no rest in between. When you’ve completed all three (90 seconds of work), rest for 15-30 seconds. Repeat twice more for a total of three sets.

  • Alternating Renegade Row to Kickback | Start in a plank position, hands gripping dumbbells stacked underneath your shoulders. From here, row your right elbow up towards the ceiling, bringing the dumbbell up towards your armpit. From here, straighten your right arm, kicking the dumbbell back and up. Try to keep your hips level as you do this. Reverse the movement back to starting plank position and repeat on the left.
  • Standing Row – Reverse Fly Combo | Start standing with feet about hip’s width apart, a dumbbell in each hand. Have a slight bend in the knees and hinge forward with your torso, keeping the abs engaged and sending your hips back behind you. Start by rowing your elbows back up behind you. Extend the arms back down and then perform a reverse  fly: keep a soft bend in the elbows as you pull the weights out wide to the side, squeezing your shoulder blades together and engaging the back. Return back to starting position and do a row, alternating back and forth between the two.
  • Shoulder Shaper to Rotation | Start with arms in goal post position: elbows bent at 90 degrees at shoulder height. From here, maintaining those 90-degree bends, bring your forearms together in front of your face. Return back out to goal post position. Elbows should stay at shoulder height the entire time. When you’re back in goal post, rotate your palms down, maintaining the 90-degree bend in your elbows and stopping when hands are level with your shoulders (think of closing the lid on a box). Rotate your arms back up to starting position.

SECTION 3 | Bodyweight

Do each exercise for 30 seconds, back-to-back with no rest in between. When you’ve completed all three (90 seconds of work), rest for 15-30 seconds. Repeat twice more for a total of three sets.

  • Swimmer Lift ‘n Pull | Start laying on your stomach with arms and legs outstretched. Engage your posterior so that hands and feet are hovering off the ground an inch or so. This is your starting position. From here, lift your chest and legs off the ground, squeezing your back and glutes. Once lifted, bend your elbows, pulling them back behind you as you squeeze your shoulder blades together. Extend arms back out straight and then lower body back to a hover.
  • Hand Release Push Ups | Start in a plank position and begin to bend your elbows as if you were doing a push up, but instead lower your body all the way to the ground. From here, lift your chest and hands off the ground, squeezing your upper back. Lower your hands back down to the ground by your rib cage and press your body back up into a high plank position.
  • Swimmer Kicks | Start laying on your stomach with arms outstretched overhead. Engage your back and glutes to lift your chest and legs off the ground. Your pelvic bone should be your main/only point of contact with the floor. From here, flutter kick your arms and legs, not letting them come to rest on the floor. It doesn’t have to be a huge movement; just alternate lifting one arm and the opposite leg up a few inches higher than the other.

20-Minute Workout for Better Posture (targets upper back and shoulders)WEARING | leggings c/o Athleta // Nike sneakers // Nike sports bra (similar here) // Adidas tank (old but similar here)

Ok, now next up, I need to make a workout where you just do this the whole time: 20-Minute Workout for Better Posture (targets upper back and shoulders)

Looks amazing, right? 😉

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5 Activewear Brands I’m Loving: ALO Yoga

alo-yoga-style-picks

FROM TOP TO BOTTOM, LEFT TO RIGHT: Yoga Mesh-Paneled Yoga Pants  | Yoga Harlow Funnelneck Top  | Yoga Colorblock Capri Leggings  | Yoga Women’s Goddess Ribbed Legging Printed  | Yoga Women’s Reversible Bra  | Yoga Goddess Ribbed Legging  | Yoga Women’s Breeze Tank

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I’m coming at you with my final athleticwear brand feature a day early. I see ALO Yoga everywhere (on blogs and real life) and always make a mental note to look to the brand the next time I’m shopping for new workout gear. I love the color palettes and patterns they use.

Do you guys own any ALO gear? What do you think?

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