Fitness Tips

Leave No Muscle Behind With This Full-Body Activation Workout Plan

This January, it’s time to take it easy and hone in on healthy habits that you can live with for an entire trip around the sun—and beyond. We’ve enlisted the help of industry experts to put together three four-week plans designed to help you move your body, eat more sustainably, or show yourself some loving care. Pick a plan—or three—and hit refresh. Get the Program

Congratulations: You've landed in the second week of Well+Good's Renew Year Movement Plan. Last week, we got the ball rolling with cardio, core, and upper body movements that paved the way for an excellent month of moving and grooving. Now, we're going to build on that momentum by introducing activation exercises, high-intensity interval training (HIIT), and running intervals. So my one question is: Are you ready for a week of challenging your body from head to toe?

Although we're focused on a variety of things this week, I want you to really zone in on the full-body activation workout I designed for you. Full-body exercises are a great way to make the most out of your precious workout time because you'll get to hit every muscle and feel the satisfying fatigue of a job well done when you're stretching. Plus, because we're repeating this week's workout two times (remember, that's what we do!), you'll really get to see how your muscles respond and recover when you ask them to work double time.

Scroll down for the second week of workouts, and check back next Sunday for seven more days of movement.

Day 8: Do walking or running intervals (15-30 minutes)

Pick up your heart rate with walking or running intervals. This workout varies between easy efforts and hard efforts to keep you guessing and work your heart. If you're feeling really good, feel free to repeat the workout twice.

  • 3-minute warm-up (slow walk or slow jog)
  • 30-second interval at an eight effort followed by one minute of recovery pace (four effort). Repeat one time.
  • 45-second interval at an eight effort followed by one minute of recovery. Repeat one time.
  • Recover for 3 minutes, then repeat the full workout one more time (skipping the three-minute warm-up), if desired.

Day 9: Try this full-body activation workout (12 minutes)

Today is our first full-body workout together. After a warm-up, we'll target the core and glutes. Then we'll add a touch of cardio and agility at the end before we cool things down. Again, make sure you've hydrated and fueled properly for this workout. And spoiler alert: You're very likely to see this full-body activation again, so make sure you're paying attention.

Day 10: Complete an EMOM workout (20 minutes)

Every minute on the minute (or EMOM) challenges you to complete a specific number of reps within a minute. Your remaining time becomes your recovery time. (For example: If you need to complete 15 sit-ups in 60 seconds, you might complete them at the 40-second mark. And thus, have 20 seconds to rest before the next workout begins.) It's a challenging workout that really keeps you on your toes. Complete the video above twice to hit your move goal of 20 minutes today if you're more advanced in your fitness routine. Or if you're a beginner, check out one of the 20-minute EMOM workouts on the Nike Training app. Once you've downloaded the app, search for "EMOM Basics" or "Strength Meets Cardio," which are two workouts that do a good job of introducing this type of training.

Day 11: Repeat the full-body activation workout (12 minutes)

Déjà vu. Run through this workout again and focus on completing your reps with better form while upping your effort level. Notice how your confidence is increasing each time we repeat these workouts.

Day 12: Practice yoga (25 minutes)

Welcome to your second yoga day of this program. This flow, oriented towards working from home, stretches your body from head to toe and even incorporates a tiny bit of core work. Abs exercises are important for balancing sedentary behavior because they help you learn to engage your abdomen and protect your lower back while you're working. Get ready to feel refreshed.

Day 13: Choose your own movement (30-45 minutes)

You know what to do! Choose a movement style you love and fill up 30 to 45 minutes doing just that. 

Day 14: Try restorative activities (30-45 minutes)

Congratulations on making it through week two of this plan! Now, put your phone away and enjoy your restorative activities. (As a reminder, I've included your options again.)

  • Spend five to eight minutes in a supported position like savasana with a pillow or rolled-up yoga mat under your knees. Close your eyes and take some deep breaths. Notice what comes up without judgment. You can set an alarm or simply feel it out, but definitely do not engage with your gadgets, or follow along with this guided stretching routine.
  • Self massage, or use balls and/or a foam roller for ten to 12 minutes. Treat this with a playful mind. Pick out which part of you needs some lovin'. Your calves? Your hamstrings? Your arms?
  • Check in with how you're feeling. Grab a notebook and write down how you're feeling. Keep it simple and jot down the first things that come to mind. Next, write down what you're feeling grateful for. Again, no judgment is allowed. The goal of these exercises is to feel all your feelings and then let them go.

Don't rush the yumminess! Stay in your restorative mindset for as long as you like!

Looking to hit refresh on your healthy habits this January? Check out our full 2022 ReNew Year program for expert-led plans for better sleep, nutrition, exercise, and self-care routines. 

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