Man doing barbell lunge

Circuit training program



About this program

The circuit training program consists of two workouts, one for beginners and one for intermediates. To complete the beginner workout, you do not need any equipment; to complete the intermediate workout, you will need dumbbells.

Before you start any of the workouts of the circuit training program, please read the Overview and general instructions. Please also read the Cardio Training Guide, as it will teach you about some important cardio-related concepts, including cardio training zones.

Circuit training workout 1

  • Suitability: Beginner
  • Equipment required: None
  • Duration: 24–39 minutes including warmup and cooldown
  • Training zone: Moderate

Step 1: warmup

Warm up with five minutes of dynamic stretching.

Step 2: workout

Complete Circuit 1 without resting, doing each step twice before moving on to the next step.

For example, in Step 1, do bodyweight squats for 40 seconds and then jog on the spot for 20 seconds. Do this twice, before moving on to Step 2. In Step 2, do walking lunges for 40 seconds and then uppercuts for 20 seconds. Do this twice, before moving on to Step 3. And so on.

If you feel up to it, once you complete Circuit 1, take a 1-minute break and then repeat the circuit.

Circuit 1.
StepPrimary exercise (40 s)Active rest (20 s)
1Bodyweight squatJog on the spot (YT)
2Walking lunge (YT)Uppercuts (YT)
3Side shuffle (YT)Standing ab walkout (YT)
4Mountain climber (YT)Knee push-up
5Bicycle crunchLying side hip raise
6Bear crawl (YT)Plank with rotation (YT)
7Burpee (YT)Duck walk (YT)
s = seconds; YT = link to YouTube video

Step 3: cooldown

Cool down with five minutes of dynamic stretching.

Progression

Once completing Circuit 1 twice becomes easy, you can graduate to either the intermediate workout below or to any of the intermediate workouts of the other cardio training programs.

Circuit training workout 2

  • Suitability: Intermediate
  • Equipment required: Dumbbells
  • Duration: 39 minutes including warmup and cooldown
  • Target training zone: Vigorous (aerobic or lower end)

Step 1: warmup

Warm up with five minutes of dynamic stretching.

Step 2: workout

Complete Circuit 2 without resting, doing each step twice before moving on to the next step.

For example, in Step 1, do squat jumps for 40 seconds and then the boxer’s shuffle for 20 seconds. Do this twice, before moving on to Step 2. In Step 2, do jumping lunges for 40 seconds and then the dumbbell wood chop for 20 seconds. Do this twice, before moving on to Step 3. And so on.

Once you have completed Circuit 2, take a 1-minute break and then repeat the circuit.

Circuit 2.
StepPrimary exercise (40 s)Active rest (20 s)
1Squat jumpBoxer’s shuffle (YT)
2Jumping lunge (YT)Dumbbell wood chop (YT)
3Dumbbell Romanian deadlift (YT)Bent-over two-arm dumbbell row
4Push-up with renegade row (YT)Crab crawl (YT)
5Lying leg and hip raiseRussian twist (YT)
6Break dancer (YT)Lying bent-knee oblique twist
7Single-leg burpee (YT)Inch worm (YT)
s = seconds; YT = link to YouTube video

Step 3: cooldown

Cool down with five minutes of dynamic stretching.

Progression

Once completing Circuit 2 twice becomes easy, you can graduate to any of the advanced workouts of the other cardio training programs.

Design your own circuit training workouts

If you enjoyed the workouts above and would like to design your own, please see How to design circuit training workouts, in the Cardio Training Guide.



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