If I told you there was an exercise routine that takes only eight minutes and will help you tone your body and burn fat, would you do it? Would you still do it if I told you the best time of day to complete the routine is right before bed? A work out before bed could really do the trick.
I know that many of you are skeptical about working out so close to bedtime. You’re afraid it will disrupt your sleep cycle and, let’s be honest, you don’t want to get so sweaty that you need to shower again when all you really want to do is crawl under the covers. That’s what’s so great about this routine: It’s quick, you won’t be dripping in sweat by the end, and it may actually help you to sleep better. (1, 2)
A quick work out before bed
Completing this routine right before you turn in for the night accomplishes two things:
- Kick-starts your metabolism to put your body into fat-burning mode while you sleep
- May help you to have a better quality sleep
The best part is that this only takes eight minutes – one minute per exercise – to complete. Do this routine consistently to wake up with your dream body. (1, 2)
Each exercise is to be completed for 1 min straight. The only rest between each exercise is the length of time you need to transition and get yourself set up for the next one.
These exercises can all be done with bodyweight, dumbbells if you have them, or other household items to make them more challenging. Let’s dive right into this work out before bed!
Exercise #1: Glute Bridge
Lying on your back, place your hands either across your chest, on your hips, or on the ground beside you. With your feet hip-distance apart, contract your abs, squeeze your glutes, and lift your hips into the air by driving through your heels. Hold for a second in the top position, lower back to the ground, and repeat.
Modification 1: Add weight. You can use a dumbbell, barbell, resistance bands looped around your thighs just above your knees, or a heavy household item. The weight should be placed on the hips in the area of the pubic bone.
Modification 2: Change the movement pattern. When you reach the top position, lift one leg in the air, then the other, then lower both legs back to the ground. Make sure to keep your hips level the entire time.
Exercise #2: Lunges
Standing up tall, step forward with one foot and bend so that both knees are at about a 90-degree angle. In the bottom position, the thigh of your front leg should be parallel to the ground. Push through the heel of your front leg to come back to standing. Repeat on the other leg, continuing this for the full minute.
Modification: Lunge from off a step, so that you are lunging downwards, or add weight. You can add weight by holding dumbbells or using a household item, such as a backpack.
Exercise #3: Jumping Lunges
Stand in a split stance with one foot forward and the other back. Lower downwards so that both knees are bent at a 90-degree angle. Pushing primarily through your front leg, jump into the air high enough so that you can switch your feet so that your starting front leg is now at the back and the back leg is at the front. Continue for one minute.
Modification: Add weight using dumbbells or household items.
Exercise #4: Plank KickBacks
Starting in a straight-arm plank position, bring one knee in towards your chest, then squeeze your glute and push your leg into the air, leading with your heel. Repeat for 30 seconds on one leg and then do 30 seconds on the other.
Modification: Add resistance using ankle weights or resistance bands.
Exercise #5: Plank Leg Lifts
This time in a forearm plank, keep your leg straight, squeeze your glute, and lift your leg into the air. Alternate legs for a full minute. During this exercise, be sure to keep your back straight and your hips parallel to the ground (do not allow your torso to twist) by keeping your core tight. Focus on squeezing your glutes, not on lifting your leg high.
Modification: Add ankle weights or resistance bands.
Exercise #6: Leg Raises
Lying on your back with your hands at your sides, lift both legs straight into the air, stopping when you reach a 90-degree angle at your hips. Keeping your lower back flat on the ground, lower your legs back down until they are just above the ground. Without letting your heels touch the floor, raise your legs back up again. Repeat for one minute.
Modification: Add ankle weights.
Exercise #7: Flutter Kicks
Lay on your back with your legs together. Keeping your lower back on the floor, lift your legs off the ground to at most a 45-degree angle. Kick your feet up and down in a scissor-like motion for one minute.
Modification: The closer you keep your feet to the ground, the harder this move will be. You can also speed up the motion or add ankle weights.
Exercise #8: Russian Twists
Sit upright with your back straight and knees bent. You can either keep your heels lightly touching the ground, or you can lift your feet off the ground entirely, keeping your knees bent. With your hands together, twist your torso to touch the floor on one side of your body, then the other. The further you twist, the harder it will be. Twist back and forth for one minute.
Modification: Add weight.
This quick and simple work out before bed will pump up your metabolism so you will burn more fat while you sleep without making you super sweaty right before bed. Challenge yourself to do this every night for one month and see how much healthier and stronger you become.