[This article is part of a 5-part series on how I structure my morning routine. Read part 1 here.]
Day one of your new morning routine. We’ve already woken-up one hour earlier, and it’s time to get a workout in. The biggest gripe I hear is that folks don’t know how to strucrue a workout, should it be in the gym, should you run, etc. Below is a very simple and straightforward workout plan that can be practiced with little to no fitness equipment, in your home. I’ve been practicing the below routine for years now, and love that it gets my shaky fatigued in just 30 minutes. Additionally, it’s quick and is a great mix of both strength building and cardio.
I prefer working out at home, rather than going to a gym, for the simple reason that it saves time, money, and increases the likelihood that I’ll work out. There is also absolutely no excuse for not working out since the makeshift gym is in my apartment. That said, you can easily practice the following workout at a gym.
4×6 rule. I can say with confidence that if you practice the below plan four days per week for six consecutive weeks, you will absolutely see a difference in your strength, cardiovascular endurance and physical appearance (diet is also a crucial factor for appearance).
The Circuit Workout
- Workout days: Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday.
- Equipment needed: yoga mat, pull-up bar, boxing timer app (free) and one kettlebell.
- Time needed: 30 minutes, plus 5 minutes of stretching.
- A round consists of four, 30-second workout sets with a 10-second rest in between each set.
Round by Round Breakdown
- Round 1: push-ups (30 seconds), 10-second break, body weight squats (30 seconds), 10-second break, push-ups (30 seconds), 10-second break, body weight squats (30 seconds), 10-second break
- Round 2: Hindu push-ups, lunges right leg, Hindu push-ups, lunges left leg
- Round 3: pull-ups, ab leg raises, pull-ups, ab leg raises
- Round 4: swings, swings, swings, swings
- Round 5: kettlebell goblet squats, kettlebell goblet squats, kettlebell goblet squats, kettlebell goblet squats
- [now that the body is warmed-up, push as hard as you can on the last 5 sets]
- Round 6: swing right hand, thruster right hand, swing left hand, thruster left hand
- Round 7: high pull right hand, overhead squat right hand, high pull left hand, overhead squat left hand
- Round 8: clean and press right hand, high pull right hand, clean and press left hand, high pull left hand
- Round 9: swings, kettlebell goblet squats, overhead lunges right hand, overhead lunges left hand
- Round 10: thruster right hand, thruster left hand, overhead squat right hand, overhead squat left hand.
- Stretch: 5 minutes of stretching the legs, hip flexors, shoulders, and core.
If you’ve never done a kettlebell workout before, I’d highly recommend paying an instructor to teach you the basics, or watch these videos to get your form in check: swing, squat, thruster, overhead lunges, high pull, clean and press, overhead squat.
Once you can do the above workout easily, increase your kettlebell weight by 10lbs. If I’m just getting back into kettlebells — like I am now after spending 5 months training for a marathon — I start with a 35 lbs kettlebell for a month and then move up to 45lbs.
If you ever need some morning motivation check-out The Rock and Jocko Willinks’ Instagram accounts. Jock is a former Navy Seal instructor and is an absolute savage when it comes to working out in the morning. He doesn’t know it yet but he’ll be on the TR Talk Podcast soon enough!
Now that we’ve blown-out the lunges, our muscles are shaky and exhausted, it’s time for mindfulness practice. Check back tomorrow for Part 3 — Meditation.
About the author
Ryan Warner (@Ryan_N_Warner) is an account executive on Salesforce’s Financial Services team. Ryan also co-hosts the TR Talk Podcast, where co-host Tom Alaimo and Ryan interview leaders in their fields to learn how millennials can make an impact in today’s workforce.