Booty-kickin, fat-burner ladder workout (no ladder required)

You do not need a ladder to do this workout, but you will need lots of energy and the will to push yourself toward a hotter, stronger physique.

Ladders are a combination of two exercises that alternate and increase number of reps from one on up to ten. You start out with one of each, then two of each, then three…four…five…….ten, as you climb up the ladder.

Below are three ladder examples. I suggest trying all of them together at your next workout, followed by at least 20 mins of cardio. They won’t seem too tough at first, but after you’ve done all of them (55 of each move), you’ll understand why they’re such booty kickers. If you are a beginner, start with modified pushups and smaller dumbbells, but if you’re in pretty good shape and want to really see results, challenge yourself with heavier weights and fully progressed form.

This workout can be done anywhere and is gender-neutral, so challenge your spouse or a friend. A little competition will make everyone work harder.

If you require additional instruction, comment and I’ll add to my explanations. Now, go burn some calories!

Pushup-Shoulder Press Ladder

  • 1st Set: 1 pushup, 1 dumbbell shoulder press (stand up with dumbbells at your shoulders, press them straight up)
  • 2nd Set: 2 pushups, 2 presses
  • 3rd Set: 3 pushups, 3 presses
  • 4th Set: 4 pushups, 4 presses
  • 5th Set: 5 pushups, 5 presses
  • 6th Set: 6 pushups, 6 presses
  • 7th Set: 7 pushups, 7 presses
  • 8th Set: 8 pushups, 8 presses
  • 9th Set: 9 pushups, 9 presses
  • 10th Set: 10 pushups, 10 presses

Lunge-Squat Ladder

  • 1st Set: 1 lunge each leg, 1 squat (feet shoulder width apart, lower your rear like you’re about to sit down, stand back up at the point your rear would touch the seat)
  • 2nd Set: 2 lunges each leg, 2 squats
  • 3rd Set: 3 lunges each leg, 3 squats
  • 4th Set: 4 lunges each leg, 4 squats
  • 5th Set: 5 lunges each leg, 5 squats
  • 6th Set: 6 lunges each leg, 6 squats
  • 7th Set: 7 lunges each leg, 7 squats
  • 8th Set: 8 lunges each leg, 8 squats
  • 9th Set: 9 lunges each leg, 9 squats
  • 10th Set: 10 lunges each leg, 10 squats

Bicep-Ab Ladder

  • 1st Set: 1 bicep curl (both arms at once), 1 seated heel touch (sit on edge of chair/bench with legs in front of you, lean back slightly with arms behind to support you, bring knees to your chest, then extend toward the floor until your heels touch, raise knees back up/in without fully touching feet down)
  • 2nd Set: 2 bicep curls, 2 heel touches
  • 3rd Set: 3 bicep curls, 3 heel touches
  • 4th Set: 4 bicep curls, 4 heel touches
  • 5th Set: 5 bicep curls, 5 heel touches
  • 6th Set: 6 bicep curls, 6 heel touches
  • 7th Set: 7 bicep curls, 7 heel touches
  • 8th Set: 8 bicep curls, 8 heel touches
  • 9th Set: 9 bicep curls, 9 heel touches
  • 10th Set: 10 bicep curls, 10 heel touches

Exercises for a rainy day

You were all set to go run, walk, hike or ride your bike, but the weather is not cooperating. It’s pouring rain outside, and your workout plan for the day is getting a bit soggy. You can’t change the weather, but you can adapt your workout plan.

As with anything in life, it’s always smart to have a back up plan. A little water falling from the sky is not an excuse to put up your sneakers and lose an entire day. Obvious choices for working out on a rainy day include going out in rain gear or heading to the gym, but if those aren’t possible options for you, give the following activities a shot.

At Home Exercises

Enjoy your favorite TV shows, but exercise during the commercial breaks. Over the course of an hour, you will watch 16 to 24 minutes of advertisements. Rather than fast-forwarding through them with the help of your DVR/TIVO, use that time to exercise in the dry comfort of your living room. You can knock out situps, pushups, squats, tricep dips, hip raises, leg raises, jumping jacks, burpees, running in place, planks, etc. without any fancy gym equipment.

If you have a Nintendo Wii or Xbox Kinect you can challenge friends and family to a variety of sports and dance games. A little healthy competition with the help of today’s technology is sure to make you forget about the weather outside. Set up some reasonable stakes, such as the loser having to walk the dog in the rain.

If you live in a multi-level or high-rise building, now is the time to check out the stairwell. Grab your iPod, turn on your workout mix, and set your watch for at least twenty minutes. Stairs are a great way to get your heart rate up without stepping foot outside.

Video stores, and even some cable plans, offer exercise videos in addition to movies and games. The short-term commitment means you can swap them out regularly without actually purchasing any. You can actually workout with Jillian Michael’s or Bob Harper in the comfort of your own living room.

Do some deep cleaning. Vacuuming, dusting, rearranging furniture and other household chores all burn calories. Turn on some upbeat music and you’ll be shining floors, tubs and countertops at the same time you’re toning up to the beat.

Indoor Sports

If you’re into team sports, most gyms offer indoor space and equipment rental for basketball, racquetball and volleyball.

A rainy day is also the perfect time to check out a climbing gym, latin dance club or roller skating rink with friends. Learning a new skill makes working out fun, and it’s a great way to meet new, like-minded people. Even bowling burns calories.

Your friends are probably looking for rainy day activities, too, so get everyone together and make a day of it.

Indoor Attractions

Although shopping and culture are not typically synonymous with exercise, malls and museums offer lots of space to walk. When it’s raining outside, take in a new exhibit or do some window shopping. The scenery, sales and people watching will make you forget you’re burning calories. Just make sure to keep up a good pace.

Tennis Shoes vs. the Blues

Rain may refresh nature, but it has a tendency to give people the blues. To the contrary, exercise releases feel-good endorphins. Pick an indoor activity, put on your tennis shoes and chase the clouds away.

Don’t let a little rain get you down and ruin your plans. Instead, look at it as an opportunity to add something fun to your workout repertoire and explore the great indoors.