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Home workouts: James Duigan's gym-free exercise plan

November 24th 2014 / Ayesha Muttucumaru Google+ Ayesha Muttucumaru

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Lose weight and get fit from the comfort of your own living room with the first in our series of high intensity resistance training home workouts

Mixing cardio and strength training to help blitz calories, boost health and fitness and slimline our waistlines, HIIT looks set to get a hit of HIRT (high intensity resistance training) in 2015. Incorporating heart-pumping aerobic exercises with resistant-based movements using weights or your own bodyweight, it’s tough, but boy does it deliver. And the good news? You can do it from the comfort of your own home.

Feeling inspired? In the first in our series, we asked Bodyism founder James Duigan for his top exercises you can do at home for a workout plan that’s challenging, cheap and will ensure you build up a sweat - without having to step outside. Excuse us while we lace up our trainers...

The workout

This circuit is to be done two to three times, with a 20 second rest period in between each exercise.

Exercise 1: Push ups with elevated feet

“This strengthens your upper body and abdominals, and really works your arms and chest too. And with your feet raised, it will work your abs even more!” says James.

How to do it

1. Set hands one and a half shoulder widths apart and in line with your chest, NOT your shoulders. Keep your legs straight with your weight distributed through your hands and toes.

2. Have your feet raised on either a step or sofa.

3. Keep your ears, shoulders and hips in alignment.

4. Contract your stomach muscles.

5. Lower yourself so your nose almost touches the ground, keeping your body straight, then lift back up to the start position.

6. Remember to keep your head up and belly button drawn in.

7. Breathe out as you push up to start position, and breathe in as you lower yourself down.

8. Repeat 20 times.

MORE GLOSS: 5 flat stomach facts everyone needs to know

Exercise 2: Burpees

“This exercise is great for developing coordination with the upper and lower body,” says James. “It’s also a great fat burner along with really working your legs and core.”

How to do it

1. Start in a push up position with weight equally distributed between your hands and feet.

2. Jump your feet towards hands and then stand straight up with your hands in the air and then jump – as you land, ensure that the weight is equally distributed on each foot and that your landing is soft.

3. Once you have finished the jump, place your hands on the floor beside your feet and then jump your feet back into the original start position, keeping your back straight and abs tight.

4. Repeat 20 times.

Exercise 3: The Bodyism Tube Knee

“This switches on your hip and thigh muscles and works your core (stomach) muscles,” explains James. “You need an exercise tube – you can buy these at most sports shops or online at www.bodyism.com, from £11.95. If you don’t want to buy one, just do 20 squats instead of the exercises below,” he recommends.

How to do it

1. Put the band around your knees.

2. Get into a squat position and bring one knee in towards the other knee 15 times.

3. Try to keep the rest of the body still.

4. Repeat with the other knee.

MORE GLOSS: The most ridiculous things ever said to a personal trainer

Exercise 4: Tube walking

“This lifts your bottom like nothing else,” says James. “It helps stabilise the knee, hip and ankle joints. If you don’t have a tube, just do 20 squats instead.”

How to do it

1. Put the band around your ankles and walk slowly for 20 steps, keeping tension in the band. At all times keep the upper body as still as possible.

2. Now place the band above the knees, get into a squat position and walk again for 20 steps.

Exercise 5: Single-legged Squat

“This is an excellent all-round exercise and fantastic for posture,” says James.

How to do it

1. Set the core.

2. Take a comfortable stance, keeping your feet shoulder-width apart, or wider if necessary.

3. Join your hands and hold your arms parallel to the floor.

4. Point your toes out slightly and make sure your knees stay aligned with your second toe.

5. Lift one leg off the floor and squat down. DO NOT fall forwards when squatting.

6. Don’t let the leg that is working buckle inwards.

7. Repeat 10 times on each leg.

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