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Quick Christmas Cardio Workout

Christmas is a busy time, and you may not have time for your regular workout. If you want to get your heart pumping in the midst of a packed festive schedule, try our quick Christmas cardio workout.

Simply perform each move for 40 seconds, followed by a 20 second break. You can then either repeat the exercise a further 3 times or move straight on to the next exercise to create a fun and simple circuit which can be repeated.

Rudolph’s Run – High Knees

Rudolph covers a lot of ground on Christmas Eve so it’s important he gets his cardio in. Bring those knees up as high as you can and leaping from roof to roof will be a breeze.

What you’ll need: No equipment required

Instructions: Stand up straight and place your feet about hip-width apart. Face forward and open your chest. When ready bring your knees up to waist level and then slowly land on the balls of your feet, alternating knees each time. Make sure when lifting the knees, you drive the opposite arm up towards the knee.  Repeat until the set is complete.

Struggling? Try this: Don’t bring the knees up as high and slow the movement down removing the hop if required

Too easy? Try this: Speed it up and get those knees even higher!

Primary muscles: Quads, hamstrings and calves

Down Through the Chimney – Box Jumps

Leaping down the chimney is no easy task, demanding strong leg and core muscles. Get Santa ready with some box jumps.

What you’ll need: A Plyo box

Instructions: Stand with the box in front of you and your feet shoulder-width apart. Slowly bending into a quarter squat and using your arms to drive you away from the ground, jump onto the box. When jumping, ensure both feet jump at the same time and aim to land on the box softly. You want to land on the box in a squat position with your feet flat and in line with your hips and your knees pushing out. To come back down to the floor either jump back off or slowly step down and then repeat.

Struggling? Try this:  Try jumping on a lower box. If that’s still too hard then you can do step ups as an alternative option

Too easy? Try this: Jump down from the box into a squat instead of stepping off

Primary Muscles: Hamstrings, quads and glutes

Chimney Climbers – Mountain Climbers

Climbing up and down the chimney requires lots of stamina and power. Get your practice in with these chimney (mountain) climbers.

What you’ll need: No equipment but you can use a mat for extra comfort if required

Instructions: Start in a high plank position with your shoulders over the wrists and your hips as square to the floor as you can. Keep your core engaged by squeezing your stomach muscles. When ready, quickly draw your right knee in towards your chest and extend the leg back out as you drive your left knee to your chest. Continue this motion alternating each leg for the whole 40 seconds. Ensure your hips stay down throughout.

Struggling? Try this: Using a box to place your hands on will make this move easier or you can slow the exercise down

Too easy? Try this: Using the TRX in the gym, try placing your feet into the straps so your feet remain off the floor

Primary Muscles: Abdominals, glutes, hips and legs

Hang the Holly – Step-Ups

It wouldn’t be Christmas without some holly! These step ups will set you up nicely for getting to those ‘hard to reach’ places.

What you’ll need: Aerobic stepper or Plyo box

Instructions: To start, place your entire right foot onto the step or box. Press through your right heel as you rise onto the step, bringing your left foot to meet your right so that you are standing on the step. Return to the starting position by stepping down with the right foot, then the left so that both feet are on the floor. Ensure your hips stay square throughout and that your feet are straight. Keep repeating this motion for the full 40 seconds.

Struggling? Try this: Slow the move down

Too easy? Try this: Add some weight by holding a dumbbell in each hand

Primary muscles: Quads and glutes

Ice Skaters – Skaters

Who says you need ice to do some skating? Brush up your ice-skating skills with these skaters and you’ll be ready to tackle the ice in no time at all!

What you’ll need: No equipment required

Instructions: Begin in a standing position with your feet shoulder-width apart and arms at the side. You should be looking directly forward with your chest up. To begin, bring one leg behind the other at a slight angle into a reverse lunge whilst swinging your arms in front of that bent knee. To switch sides leap the back leg forward ensuring you land soft on your knees to absorb the landing. Your arms should also alternate each time (imagine hopping over a puddle!). Continue switching from side to side for the duration.

Struggling? Try this: Step left to right instead of leaping

Too easy? Try this: Leap further and land lower, you can also hold a viper if there’s one available for you to use in gym which will add some weight

Primary Muscles: Quads, hamstrings and calves

Hiding from The Kids – Commando Plank

Santa needs to ensure he can quickly hit the deck when the naughty kids who should be asleep are poking their heads around the corner! Copy his winning style with these Commando Planks.

What you’ll need: No equipment but you can use a mat for extra comfort if required

Instructions: Begin in a plank position on your forearms ensuring your core is engaged. When ready push up on your left side so your arm is straight and then follow with your right arm so that you’re on both arms (full arm plank). Make sure your shoulders are over your wrists, back straight and that your hips aren’t too high. To come back down lower onto your left forearm, then your right, returning to the start position in your forearm plank. Repeat this up-down motion for the full 40 seconds.

Struggling? Try this: Remove the up-down motion and just concentrate on holding a plank

Too easy? Try this: Speed them up (just make sure those hips stay down!)

Primary Muscles: Abdominals, obliques and shoulders.

Jolly Jacks – Jumping Jacks

There’s no better feeling than coming downstairs and seeing what gifts Santa has left. Have a celebratory leap with these Jolly Jacks.

What you’ll need: No equipment required

Instructions: Stand with your arms by your side and your feet hip-width apart. To begin jump your feet off the ground and out to the side with your feet landing a little wider than shoulder-width apart, keeping the knees soft. At the same time shoot your arms out and up above your head. Jump again, lowering your arms and bringing your legs together to return to the start position. Keep repeating this for the full 40 seconds.

Struggling? Try this: Step your feet out instead of jumping

Too easy? Try this: Hold a dumbbell in each hand. Adding some weight will make the move more challenging

Primary muscles: Calves, quads, glutes and upper back

Enjoy listening to music while working out? Why not check out our Christmas playlist to keep you motivated.

Quick Christmas Cardio Workout
Article Name
Quick Christmas Cardio Workout
Get your heart pumping and burn off those moreish mince pies with our quick Christmas cardio workout.
Publisher Name
David Lloyd Clubs
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