With summer approaching our workouts can become a little erratic; holidays are around the corner and it’s not always as easy as we’d like to get to the gym. Periodically reducing workout intensity and frequency is part of a healthy training periodization, as it plays a very important role in fatigue management and injury prevention.

What we want to avoid, however, is a decline in our fitness levels – often refered to as deconditioning. According to the American College of Sports Medicine, our fitness levels can be dramitacally reduced in just two to three weeks – with aerobic capacity regressing faster than muscle strength and other fitness scores.

The good news is that maintaining a basic level of fitness throughout the summer holidays can easily be achieved, even with reduced training time and frequency. Half an hour of moderate intensity training (70-75% of maximum heart rate) just two to three times per week has been shown to delay the onset of detraining in recreational athletes.

With this in mind, I have shared an interval workout based around 5 bodyweight exercises to inspire you to keep up with your training this summer. The workout has been designed to target all major muscle groups which are recruited using natural movement patterns. The result is a workout based around mobility, strength and cardiovascular fitness.

For maximum benefit – complete each exercise for a 1 minute duration. Rest for 10 seconds in between each exercise, and then for 1 minute rest in between rounds. Complete 4-5 rounds in total.

Standing walk down (Strength and Cardio)

Start standing with legs wider than shoulder distance and arms extended overhead. Hinge forward at the hips and place your hands on the floor.  Walk your hands out to a plank position keeping your legs as straight as possible (perform a push-up if you want to make the exercise harder). Walk back to start position.


Plyometric lunges (Strength and Cardio)

Start standing with feet shoulder distance and step forward. Lower your body down until your forward thigh is parallel to the ground, make sure your knee stays behind the line of the toes, and a few inches off the floor. From the bootom of the lunge, jump back up and alternate leg positions in the air. As you fatigue regress to normal lunges until the end of the set. 


Stand ups (Cardio and Mobility)

Start lying on your back. Lift your right arm and right leg - bringing them above your head and abdomen respectively. From this position, extend your leg and generate enough momentum to bring your body into a sit up position. Leaning on the same side of the kicking leg, push your buttocks off the floor using one arm and stand up. Lie down again using the same arm and then repeat on the opposite side. Add a jump to increase the intensity.


Cross body mountain climbers (Core Strength)

Start from a push up position, keeping core muscles tight and back in neutral position. Bring one knee up towards your chest and twist towards the opposite elbow. Return to the start position and repeat on alternate sides.


Lying back press (Postural Strength)

Lie on your back with knees bent and lumbar spine flat on the floor. With relaxed shoulders, keep the elbows bent and upper arms pointing out at a 45 degree angle from your torso. Then, without arching your spine - dig the elbows into the ground and press your upper body away from the floor. Hold this position for one second, and lower back down. You should feel your shoulder blades squeezing towards each other. Go back to the start position by resting your head on the floor.

No matter where in the world you are, bodyweight training is an effective, safe and convenient option when trying to maintain levels of fitness. A couple of short weekly sessions will reduce the chances of losing all the precious gains we worked so hard to achieve and make it easier to go back to our normal training routine once summer’s over.