CrossFit is big business these days, but you don’t have to have to be a constant presence at the box to reap the fitness benefits. Walking lunges, deadlifts, and burpees can be used in any workout routine — not just CrossFit. These four exercises force you to combine strength work, cardio, and endurance. We guarantee you’ll get a good workout!
1. Walking Lunge
Stationary and walking lunges are both great exercises, but the walking lunge does come with its own set of benefits. Walking lunges are a functional exercise, so you are training your body to improve in a useful fashion, helping things like posture just as much as your legs.
Another added benefit: You’ll get symmetrical toning. Other exercises sometimes allow you to favor a certain side. Walking lunges make it harder to compensate that way, giving you an even, all-around workout.
Walking lunges also help better your balance, strengthen your core, and increase hip flexibility. If you feel like they are too easy, try holding dumbbells overhead while performing this move.
When performed correctly, they build your upper and lower body. The Deadlift works more muscles than any other exercise, including the squat; it engages all of the major muscle groups. It’s even an effective exercise to develop your core strength, training the central muscles of your body. Muscles that make up the core are found in your upper and lower back, hips, buttocks, and abs.
Deadlifts do everything from build muscle to work your cardiovascular system. They are intense and involve using your entire body, so it is important to warm up thoroughly before lifting heavier weights.
Burpees fall into the HIIT (high-intensity interval training) category. Why do you think burpees are embraced in hard workouts like CrossFit? Because they’re great for conditioning and endurance. They’ll get your heart rate up, and do it quickly.
Researchers from the International Journal of Obesity found that HIIT is one of the most effective ways to burn fat.
Instead of hitting one target area, burpees help you to improve the overall strength of your body. The move uses the upper body throughout the pushup element and hits the core and lower body during the up/down movement and jump. That means with every rep, you’ll work your arms, chest, quads, glutes, hamstrings, and abs.
Try your own HIIT workout with burpees, or add a few to your existing routine.
4. Row Machine
Rowing may be more famous for its appearance in House of Card’s, but it’s also a staple for cross fitters looking to get a mean cardio workout. It’s no coincidence that you’ll find rowing machines in every CrossFit “box.” There are several reasons CrossFit has chosen the rowing machine over other cardio options.
Rowing is a full-body workout. It uses almost every major muscle group in your body. Rowing hits the quads, hamstrings, glutes, abs, obliques, lower back, and shoulders. Since you will most certainly be elevating your heart rate while rowing, it’s a more efficient full-body work out compared to most other cardio exercises, which primarily use the lower body. Plus, it’s low impact.
Working against resistance, rowing helps build and tone while simultaneously burning calories. That’s definitely worth adding to your training routine.
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