Burn Fat & Tone Up…Without Even Leaving Home!

stack of towels(BlackDoctor.org) — For a cheap, convenient routine that’s fast (and fun), just grab a towel: Our workout uses ordinary hand towels to boost the slimming and sculpting power of traditional exercises. By gliding through the moves, you target more muscles to maintain your balance.

Add a 3-minute cardio burst after each exercise and you’ll rev up your heart rate and burn even more fat–research shows that alternating strength moves with cardio intervals burns as many calories as jogging, builds more metabolism-boosting muscle than lifting weights solo, and can even shrink your waistline more effectively than cardio alone.

Best of all, you can customize the workout to the time you have–15, 30, or 45 minutes just 3 times a week.

The Workout At A Glance

What You’ll Need: Two hand towels and a smooth floor surface your floors are carpeted, you can use paper plates and a single towel.  After each move, do the 3-minute cardio burst for maximum results.

The 3-Minute Cardio Burst

Choose from the list below, ranked from least intense (burns about 265 calories) to most intense (428 calories). After each strength move, do a cardio burst for 3 continuous minutes (set a timer if needed), then go on to the next exercise.

1. Move and Groove: Turn on some tunes and dance–the more you shake it, the more calories you’ll melt!

2. Towel Shuffle: Stand with knees slightly bent, arms extended, holding towel taut at chest height. Step right foot to right followed by left foot 3 times; repeat to left.

3. Knee-Ups: Holding towel, do a little hop as you raise left knee and pass towel under leg from left hand to right. Repeat with right leg.

4. Stair Sizzler: Attack a set of stairs: Walk or jog up and down or, if you only have a couple of stairs, simply step up and down repeatedly.

Main move: Front to Back Lunges

Stand with right foot on towel. Slide leg back, bending knees to lower into a back lunge, keeping left knee over ankle and coming onto ball of right foot. Without lifting foot, slide right leg back to center, then forward, lowering into a front lunge, right knee bent over ankle. Slide right leg back to center to complete a rep. Do 8 times, then switch sides.

Now do a CARDIO BURST!

Make it easier: Do just the back lunge portion of the exercise 8 times.
Make it harder: Add pulses: While in lunge, raise and lower body a few inches 3 to 5 times before sliding foot back in.

Main Move: Side Slides

Stand with towel under left foot, hands on hips. Simultaneously sit back, bending right knee as close to 90 degrees as possible while keeping knee behind toes, and slide left leg out to side, keeping knee straight. Slide leg back to center and stand. Repeat 10 times; switch sides.

CARDIO BURST!

Make it easier: Only bend knee halfway as you lower (to about 45 degrees) and slide foot out just 1 to 2 feet.
Make it harder: Stay low throughout all the reps, keeping stationary leg bent as you straighten opposite leg, sliding out to side and bending to return to center. Simultaneously, hold second towel by ends at chest level, arms extended, hands pulling away from one another.

Main Move: Plank with Arm Circles

Start in a push-up position, body in straight line supported on hands and toes, a towel under each palm. Hold body still as you slowly slide left hand in small clockwise circle against floor. Repeat with right hand. Do 6 circles with each hand, switching directions halfway through.

CARDIO BURST!

Make it easier: Do exercise from modified plank position with knees on floor, body in straight line from knees to head.
Make it harder: From modified plank with knees on floor, bend elbows to lower into push-up. Hold, and slide right arm out to side and back in. Press back up to start; repeat, sliding left arm.

Main Move: Alternating Leg Extensions

Lie on back with knees bent, a towel under each foot, arms at sides. Lift hips 2 to 3 inches, press into left heel, and straighten left leg. Bend knee and slide back in as you slide right leg out, keeping hips lifted. Do 10 reps with each leg.

CARDIO BURST!

Make it easier: Use just one towel, sliding foot out about 12 inches, then return to start and repeat, keeping hips lifted. Switch feet halfway through reps.
Make it harder: Simultaneously slide both legs out until they’re almost straight, then back in, keeping hips lifted.

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