Total-Body Blast

Burn calories and build muscle in all the right places with this high-intensity workout.

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Sometimes life gets in the way, which is why you need to keep a workout on hand that’s efficient and convenient — just like this one.

“This is a total-body blaster. You get that marriage of resistance training with cardio that will get your heart rate up. It will be a big calorie burn while you are doing it but even more over the next several hours,” says Allison Moyer, ACE-CPT, CSCS, an NPC figure competitor and trainer who owns Alli-Fitness Systems in Lancaster, Pennsylvania.

This program borrows the intensity and format of a CrossFit workout paired with a more aesthetics-driven exercise selection and the convenience of using a single set of dumbbells.

Related:The One-Dumbbell Workout

“This hits everything, but it’s especially great for the core,” Moyer says. “It’s also good for the shoulders, glutes and quads.”

This workout is meant be fast and furious, rather than a test of strength. Moyer recommends using a pair of 10- or 15-pound dumbbells, but when holding to a fast pace, even 5- to 8-pounders will present a challenge.


Dumbbell Thruster


Setup: Stand with your feet a bit wider than shoulder width and a dumbbell in each hand, elbows bent, palms facing in, with the weight resting on your front delts.

Action: Descend into a full squat, keeping your chest up. From the bottom, push your knees out and drive up through your heels. Thrust your hips forward, sending the dumbbells overhead. Return the weight to your shoulders before starting the next squat.

Tip: The Thruster will be the limiting factor in terms of weight, so choose a set of dumbbells that allows you to move through all 10 thrusters without stopping.

Renegade Row


Setup: Get into a push-up position, with each hand supported by the post of a dumbbell that is about shoulder-width apart. Spread your feet to create a solid base.

Action: Alternately row each dumbbell to your torso. Fight to keep your midline stable and centered by activating your core. Keep your head aligned with your spine and your gaze on the floor a few feet in front of you.

Hang Squat Clean


Setup: With a dumbbell in each hand, shift your hips back and lower the weights until they are at thigh level. Keep your back flat and your gaze forward.

Action: Extend your knees and hips, and begin to bring the weights up your body. Explosively snap your hips forward and pull the weights up, keeping them close to your body. Drop into a full squat, catching the dumbbells on your shoulders and come to standing.

Walking Lunge


Setup: Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart and a dumbbell in each hand hanging at your sides.

Action: Step forward, keeping your front knee over your front ankle and your shoulders over your hips. Descend until your back knee kisses the floor, and then push through your front heel and step your back foot forward and repeat.