Trainer of the Month Club

This Move Gets Your Heart Rate Up As High as a Burpee Does—Without Having To Do an Actual Burpee

Allie Flinn

Each month, a new trainer takes us through four of the best workouts they have in their back pocket. Follow along weekly for new ways to sweat it out with us. See All

Burpees are unequivocally the worst. Sure, they work your entire body and get your heart rate up... but at what cost? At what cost?! Thankfully, if you hate burpees (hello, normal people), you can do other movements that get your heart rate up—like the bodyweight slams that Kat Atienza, coach and co-owner of Session, demos in the video above. The movement is essentially like doing med ball slams sans a med ball, and oof do they make you work. It's one of eight movements in Atienza's equipment-free lower body strength workout that she takes you through in this week's episode of Trainer of the Month Club.

The workout consists of two sets of four movements. Each movement is 30 seconds of work, and 15 seconds of rest. You go through each set twice. "Were gonna start with a nice quick warmup just to fire up our glutes and our core before we get into our lower body movement," Atienza says. Get ready, because you're about to feel the burn. Watch the video and follow along below.

Try Kat Atienza's equipment-free lower body strength workout

Set 1

Good mornings: You're "practicing that hinge movement here," Atienza says. Place your hands on the back of your head and place your feet hip-width distance apart. Keep a soft bend in your knees, and send your hips back as you inhale. Exhale as you come back to standing. Don't let your back round. Repeat until time is up.

Squat to squat jump: Send your hips back and down into a squat as you inhale. Exhale and squeeze your glutes as you return to a standing position. Go down into another squat, but instead of standing up, explode into a jump. Land softly on your heels. Repeat until time is up.

Alternating reverse lunge core rotation: Step to the front of your mat. Step one foot back into a lunge, creating a 90 degree angle with both knees. Rotate your torso over your front leg, then go back to center. Bring your back leg forward. Do the same on the opposite side, and continue to alternate until time is up.

Side plank plus clamshell: Lay on your side and set up as you would for a side plank. Bend your knees so that your legs create a 90 degree angle. Lift your hips off the mat. Open and close your top leg in a clamshell movement. Stay on one side for the first round, and do the other side on the second round.

Repeat set 1 before moving on to set 2.  

Set 2

Single-leg glute bridge: Lay on the ground with your knees bent and your feet flat on the floor. Raise one leg into the air. Drive through your heel and send your hips up. Exhale at the top, then lower yourself back to the ground. Repeat until time is up. Do round one on with your right leg, and round two with your left leg.

Low side lunges: Step your feet out wide. Sink your hips back and push your body to the right so that you're in a low side lunge. Push yourself to the left. Continue to alternate until time is up.

Kneel to squat: Start on your knees with your chest upright. Step your right foot up, then your left, so that you're in a low squat position. Return your right leg to a kneeling position, then your left. Switch directions so that you start with your left side. Continue until time is up.

Bodyweight slams: Reach your arms up as you rise onto your toes, then hinge at the hips, press your heels into the ground, and thrust your arms down and past your hips. It's like doing a med-ball throw without the med ball.

Repeat set 2. 

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