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High-Intensity Interval Training

The 40-Minute Full-Body Weighted HIIT Workout

HIIT your body from head to toe in 40 minutes with this minimal-equipment, maximum-results workout.

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High-intensity interval training — HIIT for short — isn’t just a cardio phenomenon.

This training style, which intersperses high-velocity all-out bouts of activity with short rest periods, has been shown to improve fat burning and aerobic fitness in a more efficient manner than typical long-form steady-state cardio. But this form of training also can be super effective with weight workouts.

The following 40-minute full-body HIIT workout with weights — courtesy of Houston-based certified personal trainer and owner of Bombshell Bootcamp Cari Shoemate — is perfect for anyone looking to shed some pounds while shaking up their typical resistance-based routines. “This workout is awesome because it incorporates heavy weights with short bursts of cardio for maximum fat burn and is a great metabolism booster,” Shoemate says.

To do it, you’ll only need one barbell and two to four weight plates — which can mean anywhere from 10-pound plates to the traditional 45-pounders, depending on your strength and fitness levels. Just be aware that a full-body HIIT workout with weights like this is tough and geared toward experienced lifters who have been resistance training steadily for at least six months. 

“You’ll want to warm up for five minutes before you start the first of the four HIIT ‘blocks,’” Shoemate explains. The warm-up can consist of, say, jogging on the treadmill, a lower-intensity ride on the elliptical, or jumping rope and calisthenics, she adds.

As for those four “blocks,” they are simply 10-minute segments of time that make up the full-body HIIT workout with weights, according to Shoemate. Within each block are 30- to 60-second periods of medium- to high-intensity work broken up with one-minute rest periods. 

You’ll finish with a five-minute cool-down, which can be a walk on the treadmill, a selection of yoga poses or a slow-paced pedal on the stationary bike, which will have you in and out of the weight room in 50 minutes total.

“I love this session, as well, because it will make you think outside the box when it comes to your workout equipment,” Shoemate adds. “There are so many great muscle-building exercises that can be done with just a barbell and plates, and it’s fun to get creative.”

Standing Shoulder Press
Standing Shoulder Press
(Photo: GettyImages)

Block 1

Exercise Intensity Time
Side-to-Side Tuck Jump High 60 seconds
Standing Shoulder Press Medium 30 seconds
Upright Row Medium 30 seconds
Side-to-Side Tuck Jump High 60 seconds
Kneeling Single-Arm Shoulder Press Medium 30 seconds (each arm)

Rest 60 seconds, then repeat one more time.

Side-to-Side Tuck Jump 

Place the barbell on the floor without weights and stand alongside it in an athletic-ready position — elbows bent, both hands out in front of you, core tight and knees slightly bent with roughly a shoulder-width stance. Keeping your chest up and back flat, squat down and then explode upward as high as possible and to the side, bringing your knees toward your chest as you quickly reach your hands around them, then open back up as you land on soft knees on the other side of the barbell. Repeat immediately by jumping back over the bar to the start.

Standing Shoulder Press 

Clean the bar to shoulder level, holding it with an overhand grip just outside shoulder width, palms up and elbows pointed forward, your upper arms near parallel with the floor as the bar rests atop your upper chest. Your feet should be set directly under your hips, toes angled slightly out. From this position, explosively drive the bar overhead to full elbow extension, hold it there for a one-count, and then lower it until it touches back down to your upper chest.

Upright Row

With your feet shoulder-width apart, stand holding a barbell in front of your thighs with a wide, overhand grip. Maintain a slight bend in your knees, with your abs tight and your eyes focused forward. From here, flex your deltoids to pull the barbell up toward your chin while keeping the bar as close to your body as you can, letting your elbows bend and rise toward the ceiling — they will finish above the level of the bar at the top. Hold the top for a second before slowly lowering the bar to the start position.

Kneeling Single-Arm Shoulder Press 

To start, assume a half-kneeling position, left knee down, right leg out behind you with that knee elevated slightly off the floor. Hold the center of the barbell at shoulder level in your left hand, elbow bent — focus on balancing it so it stays parallel to the floor. From here, press it upward to full elbow extension (without locking out) for 30 seconds, then switch to a right-knee-down stance and complete 30 seconds with your right arm. Keep your core tight and torso upright throughout.

Landmine Squat
Landmine Squat

Block 2

Exercise Intensity Time
Standard Tuck Jump (jumping in place) High 60 seconds
Landmine Reverse Lunge Into One-Arm Press (right arm) Medium 30 seconds
Landmine Squat Medium 30 seconds
Standard Tuck Jump (jumping in place) High 60 seconds
Landmine Reverse Lunge Into One-Arm Press (left arm) Medium 30 seconds
Landmine Squat Medium 30 seconds

Rest 60 seconds, then repeat one more time.

Landmine Reverse Lunge Into One-Arm Press

Place one end of the barbell, unweighted, into a corner or against the bottom of a wall. Load the appropriate amount of weight on the other side and stand facing the bar, holding the end of the weighted side of it in your right hand at shoulder level. Step back with your right leg into a reverse lunge, descending to a point at which your left thigh is parallel to the floor and your right knee is just above the floor. (It should not touch down.) From here, return to standing as you extend your right arm to lift the bar overhead to full extension. Pause for a moment at the top, then step back again with your right hand as you bring the end of the barbell back down to shoulder level. Repeat for reps on the right. Later in the workout, you’ll do reps with your left arm and leg.

Landmine Squat

Keeping the barbell tucked in the landmine position against a corner or bottom of a wall, face the loaded end with a stance slightly wider than shoulder width, holding the ends of the bar securely with both hands at your upper chest. Your core should be tight, back straight and knees slightly bent. Lower yourself into a full squat, thighs parallel to the floor, your hands remaining in place at your chest, then return to standing by powerfully extending your hips and knees.

Block 3

Exercise Intensity Time
Fast Toe Taps on Bar High 60 seconds
Alternating Side Lunge With Knee-Up Medium 60 seconds
Fast Toe Taps on Bar High 60 seconds
Stiff-Legged Deadlift Medium 30 seconds
In-and-Out Squat and Step Medium 30 seconds

Rest 60 seconds, then repeat one more time.

Fast Toe Taps on Bar 

Stand facing a barbell with weights on each side, set on the floor — you should be at the center of the bar in an athletic-ready position. From here, you’ll quickly alternate bringing one foot up to tap the top of the bar while the other foot goes back to the floor, generating a smooth and fast rhythm that feels like a standing-in-place sprint. (Of course, the bigger the plate, the higher the bar, which increases the difficulty.)

Alternating Side Lunge With Knee-Up

From a standing position, take a long step out to one side, bending that knee to lower your torso and hips toward the floor. Your trailing knee will be extended, with that foot remaining in contact with the floor. At the bottom, return to a standing position by driving through your heel and straightening your knee, continuing the motion to bring the trailing leg into a full high knee-up. Lower that foot to the floor, then step out to the opposite side to repeat the sequence.

Stiff-Legged Deadlift

Stand upright, feet shoulder-width apart and a slight bend in your knees, holding a barbell in front of your upper thighs with an overhand grip. Keeping your chest up and core tight, lean forward from your hips, pushing them rearward until your torso is roughly parallel to the floor. As you lean forward, keep your arms straight and slide the bar down your thighs toward the floor until it reaches your shins. At the bottom, keep your back flat, head neutral with the bar very close to your legs. Flex your hamstrings and glutes and lift your torso while pushing your hips forward until you bring the bar back to the start position. 

In-and-Out Squat and Step

Stand with your feet in a narrow stance inside shoulder width, holding a bar across your upper back. Your knees should be slightly bent and your toes turned out a few degrees. Keeping your head in a neutral position, abs tight and torso upright, bend at the knees and hips to slowly lower your glutes toward the floor until your thighs reach a point parallel to the floor. Return to standing by powerfully driving up through your heels, extending at your hips and knees. For the next rep, step out with your right foot to a point at which your feet are shoulder width or slightly wider, and perform another squat. For the third rep, step back into the narrow stance, and for the fourth, step out with your left foot to assume a shoulder-width or slightly wider stance. Continue the pattern for 30 seconds.

Russian Twist
Russian Twist
(Photo: GettyImages)

 

Block 4

Exercise Intensity Time
Traveling Burpee High 60 seconds
Overhead Triceps Extension (with plate) Medium 30 seconds
Standing Biceps Curl (with plate) Medium 30 seconds
Traveling Burpee High 60 seconds
Russian Twist (with plate) Medium 30 seconds
Elevated High-Plank Hold Medium 30 seconds

Rest 60 seconds, repeat one more time, then do a five-minute cool-down activity.

Traveling Burpee 

Stand upright with your feet shoulder-width apart, facing a barbell set longways in front of you on the floor. Start by squatting down as you put your hands out in front of you, then kick your legs out behind you as your hands reach the floor. From this position, you’ll lower yourself to the floor for a full push-up, then quickly press yourself back up with your arms while pulling your feet in underneath you again. Extend at your hips and knees to return to standing, continuing through with your hands overhead into a jump to propel yourself over the bar. When you come back down, immediately turn around and descend into the next rep.

Overhead Triceps Extension (with plate)

Stand holding a plate in both hands behind your head, elbows fully bent. Keeping your head straight and lower back tight, extend your elbows until your arms are straight and the weight is directly overhead. Squeeze your triceps for a one-count, then slowly lower the plate back behind your head.

Standing Biceps Curl (with plate)

Stand holding a plate in both hands, arms extended and at your sides so the weight is in front of your hips. Maintaining tight abs and an upright posture, contract your biceps to curl the plate toward your chest, keeping your elbows at your sides throughout. Hold and squeeze your biceps at the top, then slowly return the weight along the same path.

Russian Twist 

Sit on the floor, balancing on your glutes with your upper body and lower body elevated, holding a plate in both hands a few inches in front of your chest, elbows bent. Twist your body in an explosive manner to one side as you reach and tap the bottom of the plate to the floor at your side, and then bring it back to your chest and twist to the other side and tap. Continue alternating for reps for 30 seconds.

Elevated High-Plank Hold 

Make a pile of plates, then assume a plank position so that your toes are together and on top of the center of the top plate, your forearms are in contact with the floor, and your body is straight from head to heels. Hold the plank for 30 seconds.