Viewing entries tagged
exercises

6 Glute Activation Exercises For A Perky Booty

6 Glute Activation Exercises For A Perky Booty

Squatting and not seeing the results? There's a reason behind it. One of the questions I get asked frequently from ladies is, ‘Why isn’t my butt growing?I squat several times a day, but I do not see any changes’. The majority of these issues boil down to glute activation: not properly activating your glutes before you go into an intense leg day workout. 

Workout Bling: What You Need To Know About Jewelry In The Gym

Workout Bling: What You Need To Know About Jewelry In The Gym

Perhaps you’ve rushed to the gym after work or seeing your fabulous girlfriends so you forgot to take off your jewelry, or maybe you always wear your engagement ring to the gym - you’re not going to take that beauty off! Well, maybe you should. Here’s why it’s better to leave the bling behind next time.

7 Simple Ways to Fit In Exercise at Work and at School

7 Simple Ways to Fit In Exercise at Work and at School

It’s not always easy to squeeze in a gym session, but don’t let your fitness goals fall by the wayside. There are many easy ways to exercise at work or even at school! Get up and start moving, no gym required.

You Are Not A Bodybuilder (So Don't Train Like One)

You Are Not A Bodybuilder (So Don't Train Like One)

Bodybuilding magazines may inspire you to hit the gym and push as much weight as possible. But, trying to imitate your favorite bodybuilder is possibly one of the biggest mistakes you can make. It will not work for you unless you are a pro bodybuilder yourself or simply have the genes that will allow you to pump up easier than those who are not genetically predestined for that.

7 Simple Fitness Habits to Do Everyday

7 Simple Fitness Habits to Do Everyday

The easiest thing in the world is to let yourself get out of shape, eat all the wrong foods, and not get the exercise you need. But, unfortunately, that is a guaranteed way to feel terrible every day. There is another path you can take: the path to fitness.  It’s one that will make you feel fantastic. But this path requires a few sacrifices and hard work to make it happen. All you need is a little motivation to get started.

Partner Workout : Sculpt Killer Abs in 3 Moves

Partner Workout : Sculpt Killer Abs in 3 Moves

If your ab routine is feeling a little lacklustre, give this partner workout a try. Hang out with your bestie and sculpt killer abs at the same time. You'll especially be working your obliques and lower abs. You will have the strength and core stability that you need to slay at all of your other favorite sports.

The Lower Body Water Pack Workout You Needed, Yesterday

The Lower Body Water Pack Workout You Needed, Yesterday

Thinking about forgoing the inevitable leg day? Think again. With a few household items, your home can become your gym, too. This innovative water pack workout by PumpUp member @ibsfl will have your legs burning all over. These compound movements will build herculean strength and power in your lower body. No need for a kettlebell or any fancy equipment. A water pack workout is perfect if you're getting fit on a budget.

Absolute Beginner Yoga Workout

Absolute Beginner Yoga Workout

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To begin a yoga practice you need to stop competing with yourself and others. Yoga is a lot more than Downward Dog poses. The pose is actually quite challenging, and holding it for several breaths at ease is difficult, even for the most flexible. Before you can advance much further with yoga, you need to build the foundation of your practice by engaging your breathing with your movement and the moment. These are the key points of this Absolute Super Beginner yoga practice video where we will begin building the base. These moves are also good reminders for others who are more advanced with their practice. It's important to slow down and not go through the flow as if you're on auto-pilot.

This practice will give you the first insight of acknowledging different body parts during the practice. You'll engage in the moment. Breathing deeply actually requires a little bit of work in the abdominals. On the other hand, balancing poses are actually more work for the mind than for your body.

Since yoga is a lot more than making your heels touch the mat in Downward Dog, I left that pose out of this 30-minute routine on purpose.

Explore who you are and feel better by breathing deeper.

This is a post by PumpUp member Marinka Essel. Follow her on PumpUp @rinkae and on Instagram (rinkae_)

Try this awesome full body fat-burning HIIT workout

Try this awesome full body fat-burning HIIT workout

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Get fit fast with this full body fat-burning HIIT workout. This circuit focuses on bodyweight moves to get the job done. As long as you have an exercise ball, you can do it at home, in the gym, or on the go. Try doing a headstand for an extra core challenge during the exercise ball leg raises. Workout by PumpUp member @jatie.

Full body fat-burning HIIT workout

Exercise Ball Leg Raises (modified: laying)

Exercise ball leg raises (GIF) - Full Body HIIT Workout Circuit // The PumpUp Blog

Balance your upper body on your forearms and keep an exercise ball at your feet. Squeeze the exercise ball up until your body is extended into a full headstand. Lower your legs down with control and repeat.

Modification: Lay flat on your back with your spine in a neutral position. Raise your legs toward the ceiling while squeezing the exercise ball with your feet. Slowly lower back down to the ground and repeat.

Front squats

Front squats with a dog (GIF) - Full Body HIIT Workout Circuit // The PumpUp Blog

Begin in a standing position, with your legs spread at a shoulder's width apart. Lower your glutes down to wards the floor, making sure that your knees don't extend past your feet. Push your legs back up to a standing position and repeat.

Modification: Hold a kettlebell (or even your puppy) to your chest for an extra challenge

Stability ball knee-ins to push-up

Leg pull ins (GIF) - Full Body HIIT Workout Circuit // The PumpUp Blog

Start in a raised plank, with the tops of your ankles balancing on the stability ball. Keep your upper body in the same position, brace your core, and use your lower abs to bring your knees towards your chest. Make sure that the stability ball follows through with your feet. Roll your legs back into a raised plank position, and lower your chest to the floor for a push-up. Repeat.

Around the world jump squats

Around the world squats (GIF) - Full Body HIIT Workout Circuit // The PumpUp Blog

Begin in a standing position, keeping your legs at a stance that is slightly wider than your shoulders. Lower your body down into a squat, jump your body upwards, and switch directions. Repeat the squat and return to centre, then rotate your next jump to the opposite side. Repeat.

Burpees with a tuck jump

Burpees (GIF) - Full Body HIIT Workout Circuit // The PumpUp Blog

Begin in a raise plank position. Lower your body towards the floor, bracing your core throughout the movement and keeping your elbows pressed towards your sides. Push your body up into a plank, hop your feet towards your chest, jump as high as you can while tucking your knees toward your chest, and hop your body back into a plank. Repeat.

Instructions

Perform each exercise for 30 seconds, with 20 seconds of rest in between each exercise. Rest for 1-2 minutes between each circuit. Repeat the full body fat-burning HIIT workout for two to three times more, or until 15 to 20 minutes have elapsed.

Full body fat burning HIIT workout printable // The PumpUp Blog

Did you give this full body fat-burning HIIT workout a try? Pin it for later so that you can do it again! Let us know what your favorite bodyweight moves are in the comments below.

How To Tell If You’re Overtraining and What To Do About It

How To Tell If You’re Overtraining and What To Do About It

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Overtraining is real, ladies and gentlemen. From high performance athletes to the occasional runner, overtraining is a problem that many face—yet it remains undiagnosed. I know this because I have gone through several periods of overtraining myself. Only now, after several years of dedicated training, do I believe to have found the balance between pushing myself and overtraining. Being aware of overtraining, taking precautions towards avoiding it and correctly identifying as well as treating it cannot be emphasized enough.

What Is Overtraining?

To over train means to “train or cause to train too hard or for too long”. Training too hard is a danger for beginners, as they will often go harder than what their untrained body’s can handle. A friend of mine injured his calf muscle on a 5km run he did after having not exercised for years. This is a case of overtraining until injury. When I haven’t worked out for a while, I’ll go light on my first few sessions back. This ensures proper adaption and recovery towards the physical stressor.

Training too long refers to the excessive duration of a workout. Again, untrained individuals are more susceptible to this than novices as their bodies can handle less.

During the warm up phase of a workout, your body is rather stiff and your blood circulation isn’t optimal. Moreover, your full range of motion isn’t at its peak yet.

Once you’ve taken the first few deep breaths, the body is ready for performance. This is when the real workout begins. Your performance increases and then plateaus. After some time, your performance decreases and you slowly wind down your training.

While pushing past the exhaustion is a necessary component of productive training, you don’t want to overdo it. The danger of training too long is especially relevant to runners. At some point, your muscles become painfully sore and your heart is beating like crazy. You start losing focus and your technique decreases dramatically. You become susceptible to serious injuries and the impact on your joints increases. A classic example of training too long.

Working out too often is the third type of overtraining. While the workouts are well planned, you are training often and the body can’t recover fast enough. Personally, I have found this to be the type of overtraining I’m confronted with the most. If you’re training with a deadline in mind (i.e. competition), how do you train as much as possible without overtraining?

This is a tough question to answer without taking any markers or indicators into consider.

What is overtraining? How can you tell if you're overtraining? This infographic will help you to exercise smarter and work out better // The PumpUp Blog

How To Tell If You’re Overtraining

There are multiple ways to gauge your body’s condition. Here are a few good ones:

  1. Low Morning Heart Rate Variability (HRV)

My morning HRV is one of the few numbers I truly believe in and take into serious account. Heart rate variability refers to the space between your individual heartbeats. Contrary to popular belief, your heartbeat is consistently inconsistent. Your body is always making tiny adjustments towards its environment, which can be reflected by more or less unnoticeable changes in the time between heart beats, hence heart rate variability.

When your body is healthy and thriving (not over trained), your HRV is higher. The body is able to handle stress and can react to its environment, which translates into an increase in heart rate variability. Vice versa, when your body is over trained and battered, your HRV is lower. Stress isn't dealt with optimally and you react poorly to your environment.

How does one know if their HRV is high or low? There are multiple ways of measuring it, but my favorite is simply using an app on my phone. “HRV4Training” is an app especially useful for beginners, as it analyzes the data and gives you simple advice. Instead of overwhelming the user with numbers, it provides one score and a sentence informing you about your score and whether or not you should workout during the day. All you have to do is hold your finger over the camera lens for it to measure your HRV.

If your morning HRV is low and you’ve been training hard, consider resting for the day. Take a few days off if your HRV is consistently low or getting lower on a daily basis.

  1. Chronically Tired

Find yourself yawning constantly and chugging coffee despite having slept well? Overtraining doesn’t only cause your body to be sore, it can also make you feel tired and decrease your mental performance. Listen to your body instead of trying to hide the signs of training too much by binging on caffeine. Take a day off or nap frequently.

 

  1. Poor Sleep Quality

Strangely enough, sleep quality tends to suffer when training too much.

One bad night of sleep shouldn't lead to you worrying about overtraining. However, if you have trouble sleeping for a few nights (and you usually sleep like a rock), consider resting.

Aside from your own perception, tracking your sleep is also useful for determining a decrease in sleep quality. You can track your sleep using simple tools such as the SleepCycle app or more expensive trackers such as Zeo tracker.

These trackers will monitor your sleep and give you a report in the morning to inform you about the quality of your sleep. Using the data and your own perception, you can determine whether or not you might be overtraining.

 

  1. Suboptimal Performance 

Declining performance is another great indicator of training too often. If you can’t reach your previous records, you aren’t resting enough in between workouts. If you find yourself tired and sore during the warm up, think twice about working out. Overtraining isn’t always the case when you're sore and not performing well, however it is an indicator one should take into account.

These are just four possible indicators of overtraining. To make use of them, track all four and then make a conclusion rather than only regarding one or two.

 

How To Deal With Overtraining – Simple Methods Of Recovery

If you’re overtraining or are on the verge of doing so, use these recovery tips to eliminate it.

  1. Rest

While there are ways to lower the demand for rest, you can’t avoid it. The body needs rest, period. Take 1-2 days off per week and don’t train more than twice a day. As a hobby athlete myself, I train around 3-4 times per week and find it is demanding enough.

  1. Nutrition

Eating healthy is paramount for recovery. Provide your body with an abundance of nutrients and lower inflammation by avoiding trans fats, added sugar and processed foods. Ensure proper micronutrient intake by eating a lot of vegetables, nuts, meats, fruits and other healthy, unprocessed natural foods. Don't forget to eat enough carbohydrates, fat and protein! Your body needs macronutrients for energy, recovery and overall health.

  1. Stretching And Massage

Stretch daily and after workouts to promote muscle recovery as well as to increase your full range of motion. Runners, weight lifters and other athletes tighten up due to the high demands on the body and thus underperform. Make time for stretching and you’ll not only recover faster, but also feel and perform better.

Massaging is another powerful recovery enhancer. Taking massages with trained professionals is mandatory for athletes. If you don’t have the time (or money) to take a hands-on massage once a week, spend more time on the foam roller.

Self-massage using a foam roller, tennis ball and/or golf ball is referred to as self-myofascial release. Myofascial release (MFR) is a great way to relax the muscle and improve blood circulation. Furthermore, MFR softens up soft tissue, thus allowing for more mobility. Check out this video for a foam roller routine .

  1. Good Sleep

When we talk about sleep, we usually refer to how long one should sleep. The quality of sleep is equally important however, if not more. Increase the quality of your sleep by following these protocols:

  • Pitch black room
  • No screens before bed (unless your using f.lux)
  • Take honey (or other form of simple sugars, such as berries or fruit) and magnesium before bed. The carbohydrates will help your body replenish during the night and the magnesium will relax you.
  • Consume protein before bed for muscle recovery

Aside from improving the quality of your time in bed, sleep 7-9 hours per night.

  1. Cold Exposure

Ice baths, cold showers and winter temperatures are great ways of exposing your body to cold. Why do so? When your body is in a very cold environment, it retracts blood to the vital organs to ensure survival. Then, when you go back to normal temperatures, fresh blood is pumped back to the muscles. This fresh blood boosts the recovery of your muscles.

A cold shower is my favorite way of getting regular cold exposure. I’ll take a cold shower directly after my training, which will get rid of the lactic acid build up as well as refreshing my blood that is in my muscles.

 

I hope you enjoyed this article. For similar articles, please visit LifestyleApex. Follow me on Twitter @MoeHustler and like my Facebook page. Thanks!

This full-body paper towel workout changes everything

This full-body paper towel workout changes everything

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It's okay if fancy resistance equipment isn't within your budget. Get creative and grab paper towels or dish rags instead! This full-body paper towel workout by PumpUp member @rachaelgervais can be done on any flat, smooth surface. It's reminiscent of popular TRX group training classes, but you don't need an expensive gym membership to perform the exercises.  With paper towels placed at the bottom of your feet and beneath your palms, simple workout moves become much more challenging. Try our full-body paper towel workout. You'll hardly need to spend a cent and you'll break a sweat! Full body workout with paper towels // The PumpUp Blog

Ab pikes to push-ups

full-body paper towel workout gif - Ab pikes // The PumpUp Blog

Begin with your body raised in a plank position. The paper towels should be positioned beneath your feet, toward your toes. Engage your abs and push your hips upward toward the ceiling, bringing your lower body toward your chest and keeping your legs straight. Slide your feet back into a raise plank position, then lower your body down towards the floor. Do a push-up, keeping your elbows pressed at the sides of your body. Repeat 12 times.

Push-ups with leg jacks

Plank leg jacks - Full-Body paper towel workout gif // The PumpUp Blog

Begin in a raised plank position, with the paper towels positioned at the ball of each foot. Lower your body straight down toward the floor. As you do so, slide both feet laterally and outward past the sides of your body. As you bring yourself back up to plank, push your arms straight up and slide both feet back to center. Repeat 12 times.

Mountain climbers to leg jacks

Mountain climbers - Full-Body Paper Towel Workout gif // The PumpUp Blog

Start in a raised plank and keep the paper towels at your feet. Drive one knee toward the opposite shoulder, sliding your foot as you go. Return to plank and immediately repeat with the other leg. Bring foot back to center and slide both legs outward, extending past the sides of your body. Repeat 12 times.

Paper towel push-ups

Paper towel push-up gif // PumpUp Blog

Keep the paper towels beneath the palms of your hands. Lower your body toward the ground and slide your hands out past the sides of your body, in a wide-grip push-up position. Promptly bring your body back up to a raised plank, sliding both arms back to center. Make sure to keep your spine straight throughout the entire movement. Legs remain stationary and together, extended straight behind you.

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Loved this full-body paper towel workout? This modification is an inexpensive, yet effective way to make bodyweight exercises much more challenging. Do the moves slowly and with caution in order to avoid injury. Try any of these exercises today and let us know what you thought of them in the comments below!

Yoga in Bed : Morning and Night Routines

Yoga in Bed : Morning and Night Routines

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Sometimes you just can’t resist hitting the snooze button in the morning. To break free from this habit and put an end to the excuse that you're 'too busy' for exercise, get a workout done in your bed.  You won't need to rush out the door any more. Yoga in bed will save your life.

Here is a quick yoga routine that anyone can do to become energized and motivated enough to wake up and exercise. You will have time for your gym session, your morning run, or however you prefer to work out in the morning. This yoga in bed routine will give you a tiny boost to help you kill the snooze. The poses included in this video will get your blood circulation going, wake up your digestion system, and stimulate your mind. Even if you do end up sleeping so late that you just can’t find the time to squeeze in that morning run, this 5 minute yoga in bed routine is something you can do before you head out of the door.
Yoga in Bed - Night time Yoga routine // Klaaqu for the PumpUp Blog

What if your body is too tired after a long day? Sometimes, you just can't sleep because your day has been too stressful. Here is another routine that you can do in your bed as well. Do this yoga in bed routine at night, wash off your makeup, and brush your teeth. Follow these calming poses and hold them for a little bit longer than you would in the morning. Help your brain relax, fall asleep faster, and get a higher quality of sleep.
These yoga in bed routines from PumpUp member @rinkae will energize your morning, or bring peace to your mind at night. Follow her on Instagram @rinkae_ and check out her YouTube channel.

Learn how to do a handstand in 5 steps (Beginners)

Learn how to do a handstand in 5 steps (Beginners)

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Do you want to learn how to do a handstand? You don't have to be a trained gymnast, a circus professional or a yogi to do it. Follow these easy steps demonstrated by PumpUp member @randy_dizon  and you will be on your way to accomplishing a handstand in your very own home! All you need is a chair or stool, a wall and a lot of floor space.

Step 1: Warm up your wrists

Learn how to do a handstand in 4 steps (for beginners) | Warm up wrists gif // the PumpUp Blog

Make sure to take your time and really stretch out your wrists in all directions. Not only will this help to prevent any injuries, but you will also be strengthening your wrists at the same time.

Step 2: Push-ups

Learn how to do a handstand in 4 steps (for beginners) | Push up gif // the PumpUp Blog

Learn how to do a handstand in 4 steps (for beginners) | Pike Pushups gif // the PumpUp Blog

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Strong pushups will help you gain the upper body strength to hold yourself upside down. Pike push-ups are a more advanced variation that will help you to gain much more upper body strength.

Step 3: Chair-supported handstands

Learn how to do a handstand in 4 steps (for beginners) |Chair balance gif // the PumpUp Blog

Using the chair try to stack your hips on top of your shoulders, once you feel comfortable with that slowly lift one leg up to the sky straight up and then once your comfortable slowing bring the other leg up.

Step 4:Wall-supported handstands

Learn how to do a handstand in 4 steps (for beginners) | Wall Handstand gif // the PumpUp Blog

Go back and forth between this step and Step 3. Using the wall, face the wall in a handstand. Make sure to keep your body completely straight, staying just an inch away from the wall. The only part of your body that should be touching the wall is your toes to maintain balance. It's scary, so you need to trust in yourself and use your fingers to stay balanced.

Step 5: Unassisted Handstands

Learn how to do a handstand in 4 steps (for beginners) | Handstand gif // the PumpUp Blog

Master each step before moving on to this last stage. The most important aspect of your training is repetition! The more you practice, the better your handstands will get. Learning how to do a handstand takes time. By following these steps, you'll be well on your way to perfecting your handstand.

Learn how to do a handstand in 5 steps (for beginners) // the PumpUp Blog

For more tips and cool videos follow PumpUp's professional calisthenics athlete @randy_dizon for more fun workouts!

What to eat before and after a workout

What to eat before and after a workout

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Running out of steam halfway into a training session ruins your whole workout. If you want to have better results from working up a sweat at the gym, you need to eat the right foods. It’s not just what you eat, though, but also when you eat it that will have you pushing on for longer. Follow this guide to fuel up the correct way before and after a workout session.

Dig into a Carb-Protein Blend

What to eat before and after your workout : dig into a carb-protein blend before your workout

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Although you always hear of the importance of protein when you want to build and repair muscles, pairing protein with carbs is a must.  It will give your body the energy it needs to complete your workout session. You want a mix of carbs: simple carbs that will burn quickly for a boost of energy and complex carbs that take longer to be released so that your energy can be sustained. Examples of adequate snacks are a whole-wheat bagel with jam or a protein shake with a banana.

Reach for coffee

What to eat before and after your workout: reach for coffee (yes, coffee!)

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Although you don’t want to have too much of it, one cup of coffee can improve your workout. It’s great to drink before you hit the gym because it will boost your energy. It also decreases muscle soreness after your session. However, coffee should never be a substitute for energy-filled meals before you hit the ground running as it won’t fill and fuel you up properly on its own.

Wind up your fitness clock

What to eat before and after your workout : Wind up your fitness clock

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Getting the right fuel for your workout is one thing, but you need to time your eating well so that your fuel works for you. It’s a bit like filling up your car with gas. You want to use the fuel instead of letting it go to waste because the car is running on idle. Try to eat within four hours of your workout, and then have a snack in the hour before you start. Base how much you should eat on how long your exercise session is going to last. If it’s longer than an hour, add in a bit more food to keep you going. Beans and lentils are great to help you achieve the slow-burn energy you need to fuel a longer workout, and they are high in complex carbs as well as protein.

Have a mid-session snack

What to eat before and after a workout: what could be more important than a little something to eat?

(Image via Buzzfeed)

Although it might seem strange to eat while you exercise, this is beneficial if you have a long and/or strenuous workout. A quick bite, in the form of carbs such as raisins or a banana, will help to fill your body with energy while helping you burn more calories. Protein consumption during exercise is a good thing as its amino acids are used during your session and need to be rebuilt, while carbs help to keep the body’s cortisol hormones low - when these are too high they break down muscle mass instead of helping to build it.

Replenish your body

What to eat before and after a workout: make sure to replenish your body immediately

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When your time at the gym has come to an end, don’t forget to top up on food again. Although you might think you don’t need the energy, the goal of eating after a workout is to replenish your body’s nutrients and reserves. You need to eat within an hour after exercise so that your body will use the food to recover and also store away energy. If you don’t eat within this window, your body will risk losing energy during your next workout - even if it’s the next day. It’s time to eat protein along with some carbs again, such as a salad with chickpeas and olive oil, a peanut butter sandwich, or a cup of quinoa with berries. Berries are also filled with antioxidants such as Vitamin C that have many other health and skin benefits, too.

Eating after a workout also helps you continue with your day without experiencing energy slumps. And remember: if you feel good and energetic after your workout, instead of tired and drained, you’ll look forward to tomorrow’s workout much more.

Eating the right foods before, during and after a workout will help you maximize your gym sessions so you can get the toned and healthy body you’ve always wanted.

What to eat before and after your working: Healthy eating doesn't have to be too difficult. Refuel the right way by loading up on protein and a mix of carbs. Remember to time your eating well so that you can recover, without experiencing energy slumps. Learn more from the PumpUp blog!

About the author

Gwen Lewis is a writer and makeup artist based in Southern California. Because of her passion for beauty and health, she hopes to help others not just look great but feel great, whether through makeup or her writing. In her free time, she enjoy shopping and pick-up soccer games with her friends.

2 burpee variations to try on your next vacation

2 burpee variations to try on your next vacation

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Jump away from the ordinary and towards the extraordinary. There are many ways to spice up your burpees, especially if you've been challenging yourself to perform them consistently every day. Modifying your vertical jump is an easy way to do so. Experiment with different burpee variations when you're scrunching the sand through your toes on your next vacation. Not only will you take terrific photos, you'll also work up a great sweat! Here are two burpee variations to try on your next vacation:

Burpee split toe touch

Burpee split toe touch

Begin in a push-up position. Press your body down towards the ground, jump your feet towards your forearms, spring your body up vertically, then scissor one leg in front of your body and one leg behind your body. Attempt to touch your forward foot as you perform the vertical jump. Jump back down into a push-up position and repeat.

Burpee toe touch

Burpee toe touch

Begin in a push-up position. Push yourself down towards the ground, hop your feet towards your forearms, jump vertically, then swing both feet towards the front of your body. Attempt to touch both of your feet as you perform the jump. Bring yourself softly down into a push-up position and repeat.

Burpee variations to try

Did you try these burpee variations? Do you have awesome workout videos to show us? Tag us on Instagram with #TeamPumpUp so that we can see them! These burpee variations are courtesy of PumpUp member @iloveburpees. 

The 4 move plank workout that you can do almost anywhere

The 4 move plank workout that you can do almost anywhere

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Brace your core: planks are coming.  If know that you're going to be planted firmly on the couch so that you can watch Game of Thrones for an extended period of time, do a plank workout in between major plot twists. Perform planks in between chapters of your textbooks. Plank it out after answering 20 emails. PumpUp member @nina_1911 demonstrates four plank variations that will allow you to strengthen your entire body as you dive deep into the world of your favourite television show or immerse yourself in your work. Regardless of how tightly-packed your schedule is, be assured that you have planks to help you stay active. How's that for multi-tasking?

4 move plank workout

Plank Variation 1: Normal plank

Plank variation 1 : Normal plank - PumpUp Blog

Rest your hands firmly on the ground, with your feet at a shoulder's width apart. Keep your body in a straight line, balancing on the balls of your feet and maintaining an arm position where your shoulders are aligned with your wrists. Try not to crane your neck too far up, and make sure that your hips don't pike up as you plank. Modification: Perform the plank on with your forearms lowered to the ground. Hold for 30-60 seconds.

Plank variation 2 : Side Plank

Plank variation 2 : Side plank - The 4 move plank workout from the PumpUp Blog

Begin in a normal plank position. Slowly rotate your body towards one side, so that your feet are stacked on top of each other. Keep one hand firmly planted on the ground and rotate the other arm upwards, so that it is perpendicular to your body. ModificationTry the side plank on one elbow, or rest the stacked foot on the ground. Hold for 30-60 seconds.

Plank variation 3: Side plank with a leg raise

Plank variation 3: side plank with a leg raise. The 4 move plank workout from the PumpUp Blog

Begin in a side plank position. With one hand planted firmly on the ground and  your other arm perpendicular to your body, lift your stacked leg as high as you can. Keep it straight and parallel to your other leg. Hold for 30-60 seconds.

Plank variation 4: Forward reach

Plank variation 4 - Forward reach. The 4 move plank workout from the PumpUp Blog

Return to the normal plank position. Keep arm firmly planted on the ground and reach the other arm ahead of you, maintaining it aligned with the rest of your body. Raise the opposite leg and reach that upwards. Hold for 30-60 seconds.

The 4 - move plank workout that you can do almost anywhere : 4 plank variations that will keep you fit when you're at your busiest (From the PumpUp Blog)

Loved this plank workout? Do you have other plank variations to show the PumpUp community? Tag your best photos with #FlexFriday on the PumpUp app and tag @nina_1911 if you tried this plank workout!

4 moves to build strength with this full body workout

4 moves to build strength with this full body workout

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You're short on time and you want a workout that completely and thoroughly strengthens your whole body. If you're going to squeeze some exercise in between your tightly-packed schedule, it might as well be a full body workout. These 4 moves demonstrated by PumpUp member @fitmissrach will make your efforts worth it. You'll be working your abs, glutes, quads and arms. Only two pieces of equipment are required for these exercises: a medicine ball and a pair of dumbbells. Feel free to try this workout within the comfort of your home or at the gym. That's how accessible it is. Plank dumbbell rows

Plank dumbbell rows - 4 strengthening moves for a full body workout (GIF) from the PumpUp Blog

Begin in a plank position. Your shoulders are in line with your wrists, your feet are shoulder-width apart and you're gripping a dumbbell in each hand. Keep your elbow close to the side of your body and stabilize your core as you draw the elbow up towards your body in a rowing motion. Repeat on the other side. Perform at least 12 reps on each side.

Plank side tucks

Plank side jumps - 4 strengthening moves for a full body workout (GIF) from the PumpUp Blog

Begin in a plank position. Your feet are close together, shoulders aligned with your wrists in a straight line and hands gripping dumbbells. Tuck your knees and jump your feet together, towards the side of one elbow. Promptly jump towards the other side and repeat for 30 seconds or at least 12 reps on each side.

Medicine ball squat jacks

Plank medicine ball squat jacks- 4 strengthening moves for a full body workout (GIF) from the PumpUp Blog

Hold your medicine ball tight towards your jest, with one hand on each side of the ball and elbows out. Drop into a full wide legged squat, with your knees just over your toes. Jump your feet back together so that you spring into a straight standing position, then drop back down into a wide legged squat. Repeat for 30 seconds or at least 12 reps.

Medicine ball squat to overhead reach

Medicine ball squat reaches- 4 strengthening moves for a full body workout (GIF) from the PumpUp Blog

Hold your medicine ball out in front of you with straight arms, one hand on each side of the ball. Take a wide legged stance and drop down into a full squat, lowering the medicine ball down towards the floor and in between your legs with straight arms as you squat. As you straighten your legs, reach the ball over your head, maintaining the same arm position. Repeat for 30 seconds or at least 12 reps.

4 move full body workout from the PumpUp Blog - Get your heart pumping! You just need a medicine ball and a pair of dumbbells. Plank dumbbell rows, plank side tucks, medicine ball squat jacks, and squat to overhead presses.

Love these 4 strengthening full body workout moves from PumpUp member @fitmissrach? Let us know in the comments below and tag us on PumpUp and Instagram with #TeamPumpUp and #WorkoutWednesday if you tried these moves! Have any other favourite full body workout moves that you'd like to show the PumpUp community? Tag your videos on Instagram with #TeamPumpUp so that we can see them!

Get your body pumping with this partner arm workout

Get your body pumping with this partner arm workout

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Make your Sweaty Sunday really and earnestly sweaty with this partner arm workout to remember. Your upper extremities will feel like jello sticks, and that's okay. It means that you're working hard. PumpUp members @breezybaby and @kfit22 made a very sweaty arm workout video to help demonstrate the moves.  What are your favourite ways to work your arms? Show us how! Challenge yourself and remember to tag your sweaty selfies on the PumpUp app today!

10 minutes on the stair stepper (warm up)

 

20 squat to medicine ball passes
Squat to medicine ball passes : a killer move that will target your arms during this partner workout. Find out more on the PumpUp Blog
Begin with the medicine ball and chest level, elbows slightly bent to support the weight of the medicine ball. Drop down into a squat and make sure that your knees don't reach past your toes. When ascending, launch the medicine ball out of your hands (vertically), and let your partner catch it. Repeat.

 

10 burpees with push-ups
Burpees to push-ups (GIF) - A move that keeps your heart rate up and improves your strength during this partner arm workout. Find out more on the PumpUp Blog
Perform a regular burpee by dropping your hands firmly onto the floor. Lower your body into a push-up, making sure that your shoulders are in line with your wrists. Jump your feet back towards your forearms and promptly launch your body upwards towards the ceiling, with your hands raised. Repeat.

 

20 high knee runs (each leg, 40 total)
High knee runs. Get your heart pumping with this awesome no-equipment exercise. Find out more on the PumpUp Blog
Run in place while lifting each knee towards your chest. Alternate legs and pump your arms through the motion as quickly as you can.

 

20 deadlift-row-tricep kickbacks
Dumbell deadlift-row-tricep kickback combos. This move targets different parts of your arm to strengthen your muscles. Find out more on the PumpUp Blog
Hold your dumbbell, lower it towards your feet and keep a flat back when doing so. Push through your legs to lift yourself up, press the dumbbells towards your obliques, bend your elbows a a 90 degree angle, and kick back your arms.

 

20 bicep curls to shoulder presses
Dumbbell arm gif
Hold the dumbbells so that the handles of the weight are parallel to you. Press your arms to your sides, lower your forearms and raise them. Bring the dumbbells up to your shoulders and press the weights up. Lower your arms and repeat.

 

Perform this partner arm workout 2-3 times for best results. Have fun and remember to tag your videos on Instagram with #TeamPumpUp so we can see them! Have a great sweaty sunday! Let us know if you performed this partner arm workout in the comments below!

 

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3 partner exercises that will get your heart pumping

3 partner exercises that will get your heart pumping

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If you're out of ideas for gym partner exercises, fret not. Let equipment inspire you! This gym partner workout is full of fast-paced moves that will elevate your heart rate while having fun with your workout partner. All you'll need for this is a resistance band, battle ropes, and a gym buddy!

Resistance Band Running

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Partner 1 holds both handles of a resistance band. Partner 2 will step into the loop, positioning herself or himself a few paces further away. Partner 1 drops down into a squat, anchoring the band while Partner 2 leans forward and sprints. Slowly and gradually decrease the speed of your stride when finished, easing up on the band when the runner has completely stopped.

How does this help you?

Resistance band running will help you to increase the agility of your sprints. You'll be almost as speedy as the road runner, and your lower body will have more power to drive you further and faster over longer and longer distances. The extra resistance will help you to improve your stride frequency, which will in turn enhance your performance in various sports and allow you cross the finish line faster during short-distance runs.

Battle rope skips

Exercise battle ropes partner exercise jumping

Partner 1 harnesses the battle ropes to a stationary anchor, dropping down into a half-squat position. Make small waves with the ropes, alternating forearms to lift the ropes off the ground and engaging your core to add power to the movement. Once Partner 1 establishes a rhythm with the ropes, Partner 2 explodes upward and across the ropes, making sure to land softly. Jump back to starting position. Don't strain yourself during this workout.

How does this help you?

Battle ropes will help you to condition your arms, shoulders, and abs. Plus, you'll look and feel like a BOSS. Holding your lower body in a half squat throughout the exercise will actually allow your partner to jump over the ropes, and it'll help you strengthen your hamstrings, quads, and glutes. Not only will jumping elevate your heart rate and increase your agility, it also has long-term health benefits. Jumping has shown to build bone density, coordination, and prevent against common running injuries.

Partner decline sit-ups

Partner decline sit-ups from the PumpUp Blog (GIF)

If Partner 1 is strong enough, Partner 2 hooks legs around Partner 1, staying anchored at the knee. Your core is braced, legs slightly bent to lower your centre of gravity (this keeps you more stable). Partner 2 crunches up vertically.

How does this help you?

This is an advanced move. Use a bench to do a decline sit-up if you're a beginner. The decline sit-up will target the muscle responsible for hip flexion and spinal rotation.

The ultimate partner workout that will get your heart pumping with just 3 moves! Running with a resistance band, battle rope skipping, and decline sit-ups with a partner. Try this workout! Find out more on the PumpUp Blog

Enjoyed these partner exercises? Have ideas you'd like to show us? Tag your best workout videos featuring partner exercises with #TeamPumpUp on Instagram so that we can see what you've got! Thanks to PumpUp member @vania_cienfuegos07 and @its_anjela_baybee_19 for demonstrating these moves!

Take your plyo training up a notch with the box jump burpee

Take your plyo training up a notch with the box jump burpee

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Burpees are about to become a lot more challenging today (as if they weren't hard enough already). Try the box jump burpee! You'll get all of the benefits that a regular burpee will give you, but you'll also develop your leg strength and coordination even further with the box jump. You'll burn a few more calories in a shorter amount of time.  PumpUp member @tinytinne demonstrates how to perform the box jump burpee.

How to perform this version of the box jump burpee

Box Jump Burpee gif from the PumpUp Blog

  • Squat, drop down into a plank position. Shoulders should be directly in line with your wrists, neck straight
  • Do a push-up if you can, then jump your feet towards your fore-arms
  • When you jump, see if you can launch your body onto risers

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  • Land softly when dismounting from the risers (make as little noise as possible), do a 180-degree jump so that you're facing the risers again
  • Repeat

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Start small and adjust the risers according to your fitness level. You don't need to begin with a high box jump if you're not comfortable with them.

Box Jump Burpee - PumpUp Blog

How to perform a box jump without risers

If you don't have access to a gym with step aerobic risers, don't sweat it. There are a few alternatives you can use to help you to perform the box-jump and elevate your heart rate. Just make sure that you use a flat surface that's stable enough to support your body weight.

  • A park bench - Try to find one without a back rest so that you can jump and perform the box jump burpee on each side
  • Stairs - This may require you to travel further forward (rather than vertically) with your jump, but aim for about the second step on a flight of stairs. Jump back gently and perform a burpee.
  • Build your own box - Seriously. If you're willing to get your hands a little dirty, build your own box and make a neat project out of it

Have any cool burpee variations you'd like to show us? Tag your best fitness videos on Instagram with #TeamPumpUp so that we can see it! Let us know if you tried the box jump burpee in the comments below.