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Explaining Exercises

By AndreAnna

So I’ve been taking these insane classes on Tuesday and Friday mornings at the gym. The woman who teaches them is such an excellent instructor, adding moves on slowly and stretching good before and after. She must have been a body builder (or still is) because she has not an ounce of body fat and every muscle is perfectly outlined on her body. Strangely enough, I’m not intimidated because she is so down to earth and kind.

However, I’m also starting to think she was in some kind of Special Forces because some of the crap she makes us do leads me to believe I could kill a man with my pinkie if I were in as good of shape as she was.

I tweeted a couple of times about the burpees or the plank jacks or kettle bell dead lifts/swings and got a couple of replies asking me “You and Linda talk about burpees all the time – what are they?”

Answer: Death. You die a little bit with each one. The good news: the more you do them, the less you die.

I dug around youtube trying to find some examples of the exercises so that if you wanted to try them or had no idea what they were, you could learn. Going from a high-intensity cardio move like a burpee to an active recovery like a deadlift is a circuit that burns an insane amount of calories and fat. Continually alternating between cardio and active recovery with weights is one of the fastest ways to get your metabolism up there (which is the basis of 30-Day Shred as well)

So, here are your burpees.I like this video because it also shows you how to do the modified version as well as the advanced. Despite the ridiculous soundtrack and the guy showing off at the end.

Here are plank jacks. These are a great workout because they work the entire body, especially your obliques and abs and really gets your heart rate up:

I like these videos on kettle bell deadlifts/swings (which you can also do with one heavy dumbell) because she shows you how to move and position your body first for safety. She does it in two steps. First, how to do a deadlift properly:

Once you have that movement correct, you can move into the swing:

Most trainers will tell you not to exceed 60-second intervals with any of these intense circuits but instead alternate them with a period of active recovery.

Hope these helped answer some questions and now you can go cry in the corner in a fetal position.

Is there any exercise you feel is a great 60-second addition to a circuit or any exercise you are wondering about?

7 Responses to “Explaining Exercises”

  1. Liz Says:

    Oooh, this sounds a lot like CrossFit (http://crossfit.com)! I just started working out at a crossfit gym a few months ago and it makes me want to cry frequently. In that good way, though. Very cool stuff!

  2. Lesley Says:

    Beginners can modify burpees by putting one leg back at a time. The push up and jump at the top is also optional for beginners.

    Jillian Michaels’ 60 minute workouts – No More Trouble Zones and Banish Fat Boost Metabolism include variations on some of these moves. I find they are well rounded circuit-training workouts. I swear to God, those workouts burn over 500 calories a piece, easy.

  3. Kay Says:

    I do the burpees modified slightly – I sprawl at the bottom (I’m in martial arts, so this is a good way of stretching out the hips) instead of doing the pushup. But then again, I do 100 at a time, so horrifying.
    Another good one, which I’m not sure you find online is called a body blaster (again, very martial arts driven). You squat, sit back roll back til your feet hit the floor over your head. Roll back to a squat, throw your feet out to a pushup. Bring the feet back in, into a squat, and stand.
    These suck.

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