Though we seem to like to make fitness complicated, it doesn’t have to be.
If you squat, push, pull, hinge, and carry consistently you’ll probably get pretty fit. But don’t forget to lunge!
We sometimes forget about the lunge—maybe because nobody will ever ask you what your 1RM lunge is—but from a training standpoint it’s a safe and incredibly effective way to work your glutes, hamstrings, and core. Lunges are useful for improving balance and eliminating muscle imbalances, as well as increasing glute activation and hip flexor flexibility.
And when it comes to lunges, variety is as limitless as a Las Vegas buffet.
Warning: Lunges might also make going downstairs the next day kind of painful, so be smart about load, volume, and intensity.
1. Jumping Lunges
For those of you who think regular walking lunges are too easy, try jumping lunges. You don’t need to jump very high, as even the hip action of jumping an inch off the ground will give you the explosive hit you’re after.
The challenge: 1-minute max reps jumping lunges. One minute rest. Repeat 3 to 5 times.
2. Walking Lunges
You won’t think walking lunges are easy after you go around an entire track while lunging.
The challenge: 400-meter walking lunge for time.
3. Back Rack Reverse Lunge
These allow you to really load up and build some strength via the lunge.
The challenge: 8-rep max back rack reverse lunge (4 on each leg).
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