Circuit training is one of the easiest full body workouts to learn, and the bonus is that it taxes your body more than your brain.

Circuits feature pre-set exercises done in a specific order and repeated in that order a number of times.

Circuit training provides a range of benefits, including improving consistent energy throughout the day, mood stabilization and an overall increase in visual muscle tone because your slow-twitch muscles are being challenged.

The process
Do each exercise for 60 seconds at a pace of about 80 percent of your maximum effort, remembering to keep good form.

Rest for two minutes only after completing the four stations in each circuit.

Do the circuit three times, before moving to the finisher core challenge for the grand finale!

Make sure to learn the correct form for each exercise. A Goodlife professional can show you how or view online videos.

Circuit

  • High knees to elbows:
    Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart. Bend your arms and bring your elbows in front of you. Lift one knee up and across your body to try to touch the elbow on the opposite side. Alternate knees and elbows.

  • Skaters:
    Stand with your feet wider than shoulder-width apart and your knees softly bent. Push off one foot to jump across and cross that leg behind the other leg while touching the floor with the same side hand as the jumping leg. Jump back across to the other side crossing the new jumping leg behind the planted leg and touching the same side hand as the jumping leg to the floor. Continue to ‘skate’ back and forth with speed and some ‘jump’ in your movement.

    Note that your planted leg will need to bend in order to touch your hand to the floor and get a good curtsy-like movement with the opposite leg crossing behind.

  • Jump squats:
    Standing with your feet shoulder-width apart and the toes slightly pointed outward, go into a squat with your knees lined up over your toes. Keep your back straight and your chest and head up. Once you squat as deep as you can, jump up off the balls of your feet. You should land back in the starting position, with the balls of your feet touching the floor first and your knees slightly bent to absorb the landing.

  • Semi-squat side-to-side twist:
    Stand with your feet between hip and shoulder-width apart with your knees softly bent. Brace your core to create a tall spine. Bend your elbows at 90 degrees and keep them tight to your body with your palms facing each other (imagine you are holding an object about the size of a basketball). Keeping your hips stable, slowly turn your torso to the right as far as you can, and then to the left. Once you’ve determined how far you can comfortably twist, pick up the pace and continue to twist back and forth in a smooth and fluid movement at a fairly fast pace. Think about twisting your midsection as if you were wringing out a dishcloth.

Finisher core challenge
Complete the core challenge by doing the torsion control plank for 60 seconds, immediately followed by the superman swim for 60 seconds, and then repeat each exercise with no rest until two 60-second sets of each exercise are completed.

  • Torsion control plank:
    Set up a plank position with your feet hip-width apart and hands directly under the shoulders. Keeping your body still and stable, slowly raise your right hand to touch your left shoulder. Replace your right hand on the floor and repeat on the left. Alternate between hands for the duration of the station.

    This movement should be slow and controlled at all times and the plank position should be maintained.

  • Superman swim:
    Lie on your stomach with your hands stretched out in front of you. Lift your arms, chest and legs off the floor while engaging your glutes. Lower your right leg and left arm toward the floor to touch your toes and fingers to the floor, raise them back up while lowering your left leg and right arm toward the floor.

    Repeat this alternating swimming motion for the duration of the station. Stay focused on keeping your glutes engaged to reduce stress on the lower back.

If you need a change in your workout plan, consider the benefits of circuit training: better cardiorespiratory profile, higher muscle endurance and mood stabilization. And then ask yourself, if you made those improvements, what would you be able to do that you're not doing now?