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Getting Results: My Favorite 30 Minute Workout

2 August 2011 9 Comments

I’ve done P90X … twice, and as much as I love it, I’m not only a little bored, but it’s also summer, and the last thing I feel like doing is a 60 to 90 minute workout in front of the TV. I’d been struggling for a few weeks, and unable to get into the groove of a fitness routine, but early last week, the answer emerged.

I received a fitness pack at the Fitness Blogger Conference in June. It looked like a great travel idea, a resistance band, pedometer, and jump rope all in a neat little bag.

I was putting it away, anticipating its use on my next out-of-towner, when I remembered the jump rope intervals that we used to do at some Cross-fit like classes years ago. For fun, I decided to see if I could still jump rope decently. I made it through two minutes, only tripping up a few times. Hmm, it was kind of fun. So the next day I decided to incorporate jump rope intervals into a workout. The result?

Jumping rope is a serious butt firmer! It almost immediately targeted my more “troublesome” areas. Not to mention, somewhat lengthy intervals (3 minutes – trust me, it can seem like forever!) work your arms and lungs. Here’s the workout that I’m currently doing and already seeing fantastic results from …

My 30 Minute Workout

3 Days per week (Mon, Wed, Fri)

  • 3 Minutes Jump Rope (as quick as possible, single turn per jump, alternating techniques to keep it interesting)
  • One Ab Move (20 to 50 reps or 1.5 minutes in plank)
  • One Leg “Weight” Move (wall sit, lunges, squats, calf raises, etc. – max weight (where relevant) to fatigue)
  • 3 Minutes HIT (high-intensity (w/ jog breaks as needed) – high knees (this one kills when you go as fast as you can), side to sides, jumping jacks, heisman, etc.)
  • One Ab Move
  • One Arm “Weight” Move (bicep curls, overhead presses, tricep curls, tricep dips, push-ups, etc. – max weight (where relevant) to fatigue)
  • 3 Minutes Jump Rope
  • One Ab Move
  • One Leg “Weight” Move
  • 3 Minutes HIT
  • One Ab Move
  • One Arm “Weight”

The goal is to push yourself as hard as you can in each segment. But as you can see, there is a lot of leeway to just do what you feel like. I find that this freestyle method keeps me from being bored and it also helps to mix up what muscles I’m working out. Some days I plan out the moves and HIT I will do, and some days I wing it. As long as you keep moving between each interval (30 second breaks), the workout is done in 30 minutes easy! If you have a little more time and want to hit more muscles, you can do one arm move and one leg move after each set of abs.

Additional Weekly Fitness

I’m also doing one hour of yoga (light stretch or power, depending on my mood) one day a week, and stay pretty active in general. My husband and I walk 2 to 6 miles, at least 5 days a week. I actually had to take a break from writing this to walk to the optometrist (1.25 miles each way)! Dummy me forgot to bring sunglasses and had to walk home with those big dork shade glasses.

Do you have any workouts to recommend?

Also, stay tuned, I will have an ivillage follow-up with some goodies soon!


  • Katie said:

    I’ve been doing my own plyo and HIIT-style workouts lately. Short and sweet. Last weekend at home I did a 5 move plyo circuit (bounds, burpees, tuck jumps, star jumps, lunge jumps) with some bodyweight lunges/squats/abs between the circuits. 30 minutes. DONE.

    My cardio these days consists of riding my bike around town (or at the gym if I am really into my book at the time.)

  • Joanne said:

    I am SO going to try this! my physical therapist is always telling me to activate my butt (okay, he says gluteals, but whatever) and this sounds like such a fun way to do it!

  • alisa (author) said:

    The shorter workouts are so much nicer aren’t they? You’re definitely my inspiration for experimenting.

    Still need to hop on the bike. IT’s been ages!

  • alisa (author) said:

    Why is it that the word gluteals makes me giggle 🙂

  • Lori said:

    I LOVE it!!!! Love it! I’ve been using my jump rope too!!! Great workout plan!!!

    You’ve got me all excited now!

  • Valerie @ City|Life|Eats said:

    As someone who has no discipline to work out at home this is fascinating to me 🙂 Thank you for stopping by – I need to try the banana beet combo!

  • alisa (author) said:

    Well, I didn’t just stop by 🙂 I read ALL of your posts via email, just hadn’t commented in far too long. Glad you stopped by my new blog! I’m going to be transitioning y’all from Alisa Cooks soon!

    Yes, banana and beet is so good – but I usually cook the beets. Raw beets seem to do a number on my stomach.

  • Tanya said:

    I’ve actually been thinking about getting the p90x workout! I’ve never done anything like it…..I know you’re bored with it now, but at the time…how was it?? This workout routine looks cool too. Though I haven’t used a jump rope in maybe 20 years???

  • alisa (author) said:

    I LOVE P90X and can’t recommend it enough really. When the winter hits, I will probably do another 3 month round of it. It really works, and is a well-rounded regimin. I should probably write about it a bit. I have also tried Insanity, which I hated. P90X is heavy in weights, yoga, and plyometrics, while Insanity is ridiculous levels of chronic cardio.