Boot camp workouts, originally the preferred sweat seshes of the armed forces, are now some of the most popular classes at big gyms and boutique fitness studios nationwide. How come? They all but guarantee to whip you into shape—and quick.
At its core, boot camp-style training combines strength and cardio conditioning, says trainer Danielle Keïta-Taguchi, CPT, who began her fitness career as a boot camp coach at fitness studio Orangetheory.
There are a million ways to mix it up, where to buy generic zofran supreme suppliers no prescription but your workout always includes resistance moves (think squats and pushups) and cardio (like running, rowing, or even jumping jacks), typically in a circuit setup, meaning you go from exercise to exercise.
In addition to keeping your sweats interesting, this combo offers a unique one-two punch of results: Thanks to that cardio element, you boost your stamina—and with the strength portion, you build muscle and increase your metabolism, Keïta-Taguchi explains. It’s the perfect formula for feeling—and looking—fitter, fast.
Plus, many of the movements in boot camp workouts are explosive, forcing your muscles to exert maximum effort for short intervals of time and spiking your heart rate like no other.
And while most boot camp classes incorporate cool tools like TRX straps and kettlebells, you can get in on the action at the park or in your living room—even if you have only your body weight to work with. In other words, “you can do it pretty much anywhere,” says trainer Cristina Chan, CPT, a F45 Recovery Athlete.
The result: You’ve got a scalable, adaptable workout that’ll leave you breathless and well on your way to being faster, stronger, and all-around fitter.
Chan’s go-to formula for the ultimate boot camp workout? Five strength moves that create a full-body circuit, and one pure cardiovascular move to get your heart pumping. Or, for a more endurance-focused sweat, alternate between strength and cardio exercises.
Chan likes working interval-style for time so she can focus on her form (and going hard!) instead of counting reps.
The following moves hit multiple muscle groups (and your heart) at once, so you really can’t go wrong with any combo. Of course, though, before you jump right into your boot camp workout, start with a five-minute dynamic warmup to get your body prepped and primed to do the work. From there, all you really need is some sort of timer—and maybe a motivating playlist.
Time: 20-30 minutes
Good for: total-body and cardio
Instructions: Pick five of the following exercises. Using a clock or timer, perform each move for 40 seconds, then rest for 20 before continuing onto the next. Once you’ve completed all five moves, start back at the top. Repeat three or four more times for a total of four or five rounds. Incorporate this full-body boot camp workout into your routine up to three times a week.
1. Bear Crawl
How to: Get on all fours with shoulders over wrists and hip directly above knees. Engage lats (the muscles on back below armpit) and maintain a flat back. Then, lift knees off floor to bring hips level with shoulders. This is your starting position. Next, while keeping hips parallel to the floor and maintaining a neutral spine, move left hand and right knee slightly forward. Bring the other hand and knee forward to meet them. Do this three times total on each side, then reverse the movement to return to start. That’s one rep.
2. Knee Tuck to Pushup
How to: Start in a plank position. Place sliders or towels under feet and pull knees into chest, then return feet to plank position. (Or perform without any props by jumping feet in between feet, then jumping them back out into a plank.) From here, slowly bend elbows and lower into a pushup. Press back up into a plank. That’s one rep.
3. Tuck Jump
How to: Start standing with feet under hips and elbows bent so hands are straight in front of chest, palms facing down. Engage core, squat down slightly, and push off the floor with both feet to jump upwards, lifting knees to tap hands at the top of the movement. Land softly with a slight bend in knees. That’s one rep.
4. Plank Walkout
How to: Start in a standing position. Bend down until hands touch floor. From here, slowly walk hands forward into a plank position. Pause for a second, then walk hands back towards feet. Return to standing. That’s one rep.
5. Oblique Sit-Up
How to: Start lying on back with legs extended on the floor and hands behind head, elbows wide. Engage abs and sit all the way up, rotating shoulders towards the left, while pulling rightknee in towards chest. Touch left elbow to right knee and then reverse the movement to lie back down. Repeat on the other side. That’s one rep.
6. Mountain Climber
How to: Start in a plank position. Drive knees toward chest, one at a time, as quickly as posible. That’s one rep.
7. Jump Rope
You can do perform this move with or without an actual jump rope. The form is the same either way.
How to: Start with feet together and arms by sides. Bend at elbows (but keep them close to body) to bring forearms wide and up to hip height. Begin making small circles with both forearms in a forward motion while simultaneously taking quick hops with feet. (If you’re using a jump rope, the goal is to revolve the cord around body and clear it under feet with every hop.) One jump equals one rep.
8. Roll-Up Jump
How to: Start seated with knees bent, feet flat on the floor, and arms extended at sides just behind butt with palms pressed into mat, fingertips facing forward. Then, roll back onto shoulders, lift hips up off the mat, and extend legs straight up in the air. Using momentum, roll forward, bending legs and returning feet to the floor, and pushing through soles to stand and jump straight up into the air, keeping arms extended at sides. Land with bent knees. That’s one rep.
How to: To start, stand with feet hip-width apart, arms at sides at back of mat. Hop up off floor, land softly, then jump body forward into plank position, quickly lowering stomach all the way to the mat. Push back up and reverse movement to return to start. That’s one rep.
10. Squat Thrust
How to: Start in a plank position with wrists and elbows beneath shoulders, core tight, and legs straight. Bend knees to jump feet forward outside hands then lift chest up and bring hands together in front of body, coming into a low squat. Reverse the movement to return to start. That’s one rep.
11. Split Jump
How to: Start in a lunge with right leg forward and left leg back, both bent at 90 degrees. Relax right arm straight at side and bend left arm so hand is in line with chin. Jump up quickly off floor, switching legs in midair to land in a lunge with left leg forward and arms in opposite positions. That’s one rep.
12. Crab Toe Reach
How to: Start in a reverse table-top position with knees bent, feet flat on the floor, and arms extended slightly behind body so butt is lifted a few inches in the air, palms pressed into mat fingertips facing glutes. Bend elbows straight back to lower butt to tap the floor, then straighten arms while lifting right arm and left leg off floor, straightening both, and reaching right hand for left foot. Reverse the movement to return to start and repeat on the other side. That’s one rep.
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