If you’re pushed for time, conventional wisdom dictates that you have to choose between a calorie-crushing fitness hit, or a muscle-building lifting session. But our lower-body ladder meets you right in the middle, delivering a leg-pumping payload from front to back, whilst torching calories with body-weight moves. If you can keep up with the pace, that is.
You’re going to be working in a ‘ladder format’, performing ten reps of all four movements, before circling back to the beginning of the circuit for 9 reps of each, then 8, then 7 etc.. Continue in this fashion, removing a rep each round until you reach 1, for a muscle swelling total of 55 reps of each movement.
Rest as necessary and break up the sets if you need to in order to maintain impeccable form.
Keep track of how long the entire ladder takes to complete and aim to beat your score on subsequent attempts to ensure progress equating to gains in strength and stamina.
“Don’t rush this one. Be controlled and keep an eye on your tempo during the squats and deadlifts,” says Men’s Health fitness editor Andrew Tracey. “Then attempt to be as explosive as possible on the burpees and jumps. But overall focus on the quality of each rep - this is where we strike the balance between building big, strong legs and lean athleticism. Don’t sell yourself short on either!:
10-1 ladder of:
1) Front Squat 10-1 reps
With your feet at shoulder width, hold a barbell across your chest, lifting your elbows high to secure the bar on your shoulders (A). Maintain an upright torso and push your hips back, bending your knees until your thighs pass parallel to the floor (B). Stand back up to the start position.
2) Romanian Deadlift 10-1 reps
Start with the barbell at hip height, feet at shoulder width and glutes tensed (A). With a slight bend in the knees, push your hips back and slowly lower the bar towards the ground (B), pinching your shoulders back and maintaining a neutral spine. When you feel a stretch in your hamstrings, pause and lift with a flat back to the starting position.
3) Split Squat Jump 10-1 reps
Drop your bar and step one foot backward sinking into a deep lunge, with your rear knee lightly touching the floor (A). Explode upward, switching legs mid-air (B) to
land in a lunge position with the opposite leg forward. Repeat the movement, alternating legs each time. (left leg+right leg equals one rep)
4) Burpee-Over-Bar 10-1 reps
Squat down and place both hands on the floor between your feet. Jump your feet back into the top of a press-up and lower your chest to the ground (A). Straighten your arms and hop your feet forwards, before jumping into the air with hands on head (B). Once you’ve hit your reps, get straight back on the bar for the next round and keep climbing that ladder.
Try this workout, from cover model Bradley Simmonds, next:
Sign up to the Men's Health newsletter and kickstart your home body plan. Make positive steps to become healthier and mentally strong with all the best fitness, muscle-building and nutrition advice delivered to your inbox.
For effective home workouts, uplifting stories, easy recipes and advice you can trust, subscribe to Men's Health UK today
You Might Also Like