Today’s Workout column: Combination leaping and lunging for cardio
Springtime is here. It’s the perfect time to take your fitness outdoors and enjoy a great season. And combining your cardio and muscle work makes it even better!
Our move today is a side-to-side leaping lunge. This combination exercise will be accelerating your heart rate on the side-to-side jumping. And the lunging will be working your whole lower body, focusing on your glutes, hamstrings and quads. All you need for this movement is a clear area to move about. If you need intensity, small hand weights could be held as well.
Begin this exercise by standing tall, and engaging your midsection for stability and balance. Start out by simply leaping out with a wide step on your left side, following with your right leg. Once you land on the ground with your left foot, carefully swing your right leg behind you (placing your foot steadily on the ground) and lower into a small lunging position.
Now, from this lunge, you will repeat the same movement going in the opposite direction, leaping out to your right side, and following with the left leg. Position your trail leg behind you in a lunging position on the other side.
You can start this combination exercise slowly in the beginning to ensure your balance. Once you get the momentum, slightly increase your speed. This will increase your heart rate, get your blood pumping and work your lower body a little harder.
You can push yourself for a determined amount of time. Or give yourself at least 10 leaps on each side. Take a small break, and start the process over again.
If at any time you need more intensity, you can hold small hand weights in each hand, tucking them into your chest. Or, if you need to lower the intensity, simply lose the leap and step out to your sides.
Marlo Alleva, an instructor at Gold’s Gym and group fitness coordinator at Fontaine-Gills YMCA in Lakeland, Florida, can be reached at email@example.com.