These moves, from exercise physiologist and WH columnist Amy Dixon, will increase the rate at which you burn calories by up to 13 percent. The key to this kind of caloric demolition is a type of workout called a superset, in which you do two moves back to back with zero rest. It will hurt--but you won't be sorry. Because with supersets, you'll not only get that initial (and insane!) metabolic spike, but according to a study from Colorado State University, you'll continue to burn calories at a higher rate for up to 16 hours after you leave the gym. How's that for motivation? Check out part three of WH's 20-Minute Workout Series: The Agility Plan.
Proper recovery is key to feeling fab and staying injury-free. Follow these rules from John Berardi, Ph.D., president and founder of Precision Nutrition.
During your workout
Sip an energy drink. Go for one with a 2-to-1 ratio of carbs to protein: any product that has about 24 grams of carbs and 12 grams of protein. Berardi likes half a serving of Biotest Surge Recovery, a powder that you mix with water ($30 for 16 servings, biotest.net). Can't find a brand your taste buds can tolerate? Try six to eight ounces of Gatorade mixed with a scoop of whey protein powder.
Do 15 minutes of low-impact cardio, then eat ASAP. "Your blood sugar levels are low, so you may feel agitated," Berardi says. That's your body saying "Feed me. Now!" For a quick fix, order this at your smoothie bar: one to two cups of skim or soy milk, one to two cups of frozen fruit, and a scoop each of whey protein and green powder (the latter is packed with recovery-aiding antioxidants).
The next day
Light activity will keep your muscles from tightening up. Walking the dog, taking a yoga class, or chasing your niece at the playground are all legit options.
Stand facing a 12- to 18-inch step. With your feet hip-width apart, bend slightly at your knees and jump up onto the step (A). Land quietly, letting your heels hit first and bending your knees as you land (B). Push off with your heels and jump back down, landing softly, heel to toe (C). Continue for 1 minute. Works entire lower body and heart Download this move to your iPod (click and open with iTunes or save to your desktop and drag into iTunes)
Place a Bosu on the floor, dome side down, and stand facing it. With your feet hip-width apart, squat, lean forward, and grab the sides of the Bosu (A). Jump your feet back into plank position and straighten your arms. Brace your abs and do a pushup (B). Jump back into a squat, then stand. That’s one rep. Works chest and core SUPERSET 1 Alternate between sets of the Leapfrog and Bosu Burpie Pushup. Complete three sets of each. Download this move to your iPod (click and open with iTunes or save to your desktop and drag into iTunes)
Stand alongside a 12-inch-high bench. Step up with your left foot; then, swinging your left arm to help propel your body, jump up and bring your right thigh to hip height (A). Land so both feet are on the bench, knees slightly bent. Immediately step your right foot down to the floor, and with your left foot, take a giant step behind you and sink into a lunge. Place your left hand next to your right foot (B). Do the sequence for 30 seconds, then repeat on the other side. That’s one set. Works entire lower body and heart Download this move to your iPod (click and open with iTunes or save to your desktop and drag into iTunes)
Grab a pair of 5- to 10-pound dumbbells; lunge forward with your left foot. Place your right hand on your hip and raise your left arm in front of you at shoulder height, pointing the weight like a sword (A). Step back to center. Lunge out to the left, place your right hand on your hip, and raise your left arm out to the side at shoulder height (B). That’s one rep. Do 8 to 10 reps and then do the moves on the opposite side. That’s one set. Works shoulders, glutes, and all the thigh muscles SUPERSET 2 Alternate between sets of the Power Knee Tap ’n’ Touch and On-Guard Lunges. Complete three sets of each. Download this move to your iPod (click and open with iTunes or save to your desktop and drag into iTunes)
Sit on the floor with your knees slightly bent and your back as close as you can get it to a 12-inch-high step. Grab the edge of the step with your hands slightly more than hip-width apart. Push your heels into the floor as you straighten your arms. Perform a dip (A). Straighten your arms, then reach your left arm straight out in front of your body at shoulder height while lifting your right leg (B). Hold for a few seconds, then repeat, lifting the opposite arm and leg. That’s one rep. Works triceps and core Download this move to your iPod (click and open with iTunes or save to your desktop and drag into iTunes)
Get into plank position with your hands shoulder-width apart on a 12-inch-high step (A). Step forward to the front of the bench with your right foot, keeping your left leg straight and your right thigh parallel to the floor (B). With your hands on the step, jump, switch legs in the air, and land with your right leg straight behind you and your left leg bent. Continue hopping to switch legs for one minute. That’s one set. Works shoulders, chest, core, and lower body SUPERSET 3 Alternate between sets of Tricep Dip and Reach and Climb the Mountain. Complete three sets of each. Download this move to your iPod (click and open with iTunes or save to your desktop and drag into iTunes)
Place a pair of 5- to 10-pound dumbbells shoulder-width apart on a 12-inch-high step. Get in plank position with your hands on the dumbbells (A). In one motion, lift the right dumbbell until your elbow passes your torso and raise your left leg to hip height (B). Lower and repeat with the opposite arm and leg. That’s one rep. Works back, core, and glutes SUPERSET 4 This move is so tough you don’t need to superset it. You’ll know what we mean when you try it! Download this move to your iPod (click and open with iTunes or save to your desktop and drag into iTunes)