At Home Full Body Circuit Workout – Part II: Back and Core Focus

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You’re in the kitchen chopping vegetables for dinner when a sliced carrot rolls off the cutting board and onto the floor. You bend down to pick it up and suddenly feel a twinge of pain in your lower back. Has this ever happened to you?

While there are multiple reasons for low back pain, one common culprit is weak or underactive muscle. Developing and strengthening the muscle groups in your back and core is a great way to mitigate injuries, helping you glide smoothly through life.

In this at home, full body circuit workout, we will activate your core and back muscles allowing you to strengthen your body and defend against muscle twinges – all in under 30 minutes, without equipment, and in the comfort of your own home!  Craving leg day? Check out part 1 of our series: At Home Full Body Workout Circuit – Part 1: Leg Strength and Conditioning Focus.

If it’s a nice day, head outside and soak up some Vitamin D while you sweat. After a few sessions with this workout, you’ll be able to put those rolling carrots in their place!

Quick Stats:

  • Equipment Needed: Workout Mat or Towel
  • Workout Length: 25 minutes
  • Intensity: 3/5
  • Est. Calories Burned: 220 Calories

Workout Summary

Warm-Up Sequence (x1)

Bird Dogs (8 per side)
Center Plank (30-60 seconds)
Glute Bridge (10 reps)
McGill Crunch (8 per side)
Squat Inner Toe Touch (10 reps)

Strength Sequence (x3)

Basic Sit Up (10 reps)
Russian Twist (10 per side)

Circuit Sequence (x3)

Half Burpee (10 reps)
Flutter Kicks (30 seconds)
Alternating Heel Touch on Back (10 per side)
Jumping Jacks (20 reps)

Cool Down Sequence (x1)

Yoga Flow: Cat-Cow (10 reps each)
Yoga Flow: Down to Up Dog (10 reps each)

See this workout in action – check out our reel below!

Exercise Instructions

Warm-Up Sequence (x1)

Bird Dogs (8 per side)

Bird Dogs

Step 1: Start on the floor with your hands and knees in a tabletop position.
Step 2: Pull your shoulders down towards your back to engage your core.
Step 3: While reaching out with your right hand, kick back with your left leg until both are fully extended.
Step 4: After a brief pause bring both arm and leg back to the starting position.
Step 5: Alternate hands and legs until the reps have been completed.

Center Plank (30-60 sec)

Center Plank

Step 1: Lie down on your belly with elbows bent 90 degrees and on the floor and palms facing down.
Step 2: Lift your hips off the floor and squeeze your glutes and hold this position for the listed duration of time.

Glute Bridge (10 reps)

Glute Bridge

Step 1: Lie on your back and in a bent-knee position with your feet flat on the floor.
Step 2: Push through your feet and raise your hips towards the ceiling. Be sure to squeeze your glutes and hold for a 1-second pause.
Step 3: Slowly lower your hips back towards the floor and lightly tap before performing another rep.

McGill Crunch (8 per side)

McGill Crunch

Step 1: Lie on your back and bring your right foot as close your glutes as possible.
Step 2: Extended your left leg out until fully straight and lying flat on the floor.
Step 3: Place your fingertips on the bottom of your chest and push the elbows forward.
Step 4: Tuck your chin to your chest and perform a crunch.
Step 5: Repeat the sequence and then alternate legs until all reps are completed.

Squat Inner Toe Touch (10 reps)

Squat Inner Toe Touch

Step 1: Stand with your feet just outside hip-width and your arms straight and positioned inside your hips and feet.
Step 2: Push your knees out and lower yourself towards the floor in a squatting position.
Step 3: As you reach the bottom of the squat your fingertips should touch the floor on the inside of your feet.
Step 4: Push through your legs and glutes until you reach the starting position and complete the sequence again.

Strength Sequence (x3)

Basic Sit Up (10 reps)

Basic Sit Up

Step 1: Lie on your back and place your feet flat on the floor.
Step 2: Place your hands either across your chest or behind your head.
Step 3: Curl your upper body up until your elbows touch your knees.
Step 4: Slowly lower your upper body back down to the floor to the starting position and repeat for the listed reps.

Russian Twists (10 per side)

Russian Twists

Step 1: Sit on the floor with your knees slightly bent.
Step 2: Using a light weight, keep your arms fully extended and hold the weight at arms length.
Step 3: Rotate towards your right side and guide the weight towards the floor with a tap.
Step 4: Rotate towards your left side and guide the weight towards the floor with a tap.
Step 5: Repeat until all reps have been completed.

Circuit Sequence (x3)

Half Burpee (10 reps)

Half Burpee

Step 1: Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart.
Step 2: As quickly and safely as possible, drop down into a push-up position.
Step 3: Stand back up as quickly as possible and immediately go into a jump.
Step 4: Land and repeat the sequence as quickly and safely as possible for the listed reps.

Flutter Kicks (30 sec)

Flutter Kicks

Step 1: Lie flat on your back with your hands by your side.
Step 2: Tuck your chin into your chest and raise your legs about 2 inches from the floor.
Step 3: While keeping the legs fully extended slightly move one leg down towards the floor and move the other leg up towards the ceiling.
Step 4: Do not touch the floor and do not let your feet go above your head. Keep a consistent pace until time is completed.

Alternating Heel Touch on Back (10 per side)

Alternating Heel Touch on Back

Step 1: Lie on your back in a bent knee position with your feet flat on the floor.
Step 2: Place your arms by your sides.
Step 3: Pick your chest slightly up towards the ceiling while pulling your upper back off the floor.
Step 4: Alternate touching your left and right heels.
Step 5: Repeat the sequence for the desired time.

Jumping Jacks (20 reps)

Jumping Jacks

Step 1: Stand with your feet together and your arms by your side.
Step 2: Jump slightly off the ground and push your feet out to shoulder width.
Step 3: As your feet go out move your arms up to meet above your head.
Step 4: Then return to the starting position and repeat the sequence.
Step 5: Repeat the sequence until all reps are completed.

Cool Down Sequence (x1)

Yoga Flow: Cat-Cow (10 reps each)

Step 1: Start on the floor with your hands and knees in a tabletop position.
Step 2: Begin the flow by rounding your back and pulling your stomach in, bringing your body into the ‘cat’ position.
Step 3: Slowly flatten out your back and keep your stomach pulled in, bringing your body into the ‘cow’ position.
Step 4: Repeat the sequence for the remaining time.

Yoga Flow: Down to Up Dog (10 reps each)

Step 1: Start with the palms of your hands on the floor, shoulder-width apart, and the soles of your feet, hip-width apart, with your back lowered and your hips raised, forming a triangle with your body.
Step 2: This is the starting position with your body in the ‘down dog’ position.
Step 3: Begin the flow by slowly lowering your body into a plank and then lowering your body to the floor.
Step 4: When your body reaches the floor push your hands through the floor to arch your back, while keeping the tops of your feet on the floor, bringing your body into the ‘up dog’ position.
Step 5: Push through the floor with your hands, lowering your back and lifting your hips to transition back to the ‘down dog’ position.
Step 6: Repeat the sequence for the remaining time.

Nutriology Hacks:

  • Circuiting – Designing your workouts into circuits are a great way to manage your time on the mat and keep your heart rate elevated for optimal fitness gains. Complete all of the exercises in the set before resting and repeating. Wash, rinse, repeat!
  • Invest in your Core – All too often we forget about activating the muscle groups of the inner core in our daily workouts. Think of the core as your body’s main defence shield protecting you as you move about your daily life from lifting, bending, and reaching. No matter your age or fitness level, strong core muscles help prevent injuries, keeping you healthy and happy.
  • Cooling Down – You always want to wrap up your work out with a cool down to bring your core temperature down, smooth out any tight muscles, and bring your body back to a state of rest. A cool-down can be anything from jogging to stretching or a light yoga flow. Think of it as a mini celebration to honor your hard work. Namaste!

Written by the Nutriology Fitness Team

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