Work Your Entire Body With Jillian Michaels’ 12-Minute Cardio Workout
Challenging but rewarding, this routine will have you sweating in no time.
If you’re in need of a quick, whole body routine, Health senior fitness editor Rozalynn S. Frazier and Jillian Michaels are here for you. In this video, the two go through a series of moves that focus on stretching, cardio, and strength.
It all begins with a round of butt kicks. Michaels says to keep your knees down and hips forward as you pull your heels all the way up to your butt.
Another dynamic stretch to try is lunging. Lunge forward with your feet hip-width apart, rotating your upper body to the side of your bent knee. Keep your booty tucked under as you move to the other side, and make sure your hips are facing forward for this movement.
One more cardio exercise Michaels recommends before the workout kicks off: high knees. If these are difficult for you, she says to march or jog in place.
Open up your legs and arms wide, inhaling deeply so you open your chest too. Keeping your back straight, come down with your right arm while tapping your left foot. Exhale and return to the starting position before moving your left arm down and tapping your right foot.
“We don’t want a static stretch, unless we’re cooling down,” says Michaels. “This is because the body interprets the static stretch like an exercise and it actually inhibits your strength during the workout. Plus, we want to warm the muscles up before we stretch them. So we stretch them with what’s called a dynamic stretch, which is a nice smooth range of motion that isn’t yet loaded with weight.”
From there, go into a plank position. Hold your plank and drop down to a push up, then walk your hands back to your toes. To improve your push up, shift slightly forward and down as you go into the movement. If you can’t do the push up, modify by decreasing resistance with an elevated platform or object.
Now, transition from a plank position on your hands to your forearms. Then slowly lower to the ground, keeping your arms in front of you so you can do “supergirls.” Slowly lift and lower your arms and legs, making sure you keep your shoulders back and down as you lift your chest and knees.
Return to plank for one more cardio movement. Start with mountain climbers, then hold the plank again. Try out plank jacks, going out and in. For more of a challenge, alternate tapping your shoulder with the opposite hand.
Time to recover with a booty exercise! Lie on your back with your knees bent and heels as close to your butt as possible. Lift your tush all the way up into a bridge and all the way down. Focus on creating a straight line from your knee to your shoulder. Take your right leg straight up, lifting up and down. Remember that there’s no need to do this exercise fast. Then, switch legs to do the same move on the other side.
This routine challenged us by mixing things up in a creative and invigorating way. If you’re looking for a way to switch up your usual workout, then this 12-minute cardio blast is for you.