by | Jan 29, 2014 | 24 comments

It’s been a while since I’ve shared a circuit workout with you (although they’re always stored on the menu bar under Fitness –> Lyons’ Share Workouts!)  This workout took me about 22 minutes, and uses minimal equipment – just one set of light dumbbells (and you can use water bottles or soup cans in a pinch!)  I tacked it on to the end of a run, and it was great for a little bit of strength after my cardio.  If it looks confusing at first, I’ll walk you through it below … all you have to remember is “5.”  I hope you try it and enjoy it!

54321 Workout

(picture source for the rocket)

5-4-3-2-1 Workout

  • Warm up for 5 minutes (light exercise like walking, jogging, jumping jacks, high knees, stretching) if you are not completing this after a cardio workout)
  • 5: First, lunge backwards with your left foot.  Keeping your feet in place, raise and lower in your lunge 5 times.  Count backwards: 5, 4, 3, 2, 1.  After you do the last lunge, blast off!  Raise the left knee to your chest, and hop on your right foot as high as you can go.  Raise your straight right arm above your head.  Then, lunge backwards again with your left foot, and repeat 4 more times (5 total).  You will end up doing 25 lunges on this leg per set.
  • 4: Standing with feet shoulder-width apart and legs as straight as possible, lower your hands to the floor.  Walk your hands out until you are in plank position.  Jump your feet out and in (this is a plank jack) 5 times.  After the last plank jack, blast off!  Do one push up, then walk your hands back towards your feet and stand up.  Repeat 4 more times (5 total, for 25 plank jacks in this set).
  • 3: Repeat the first exercise, but on the opposite side (right foot back).
  • 2: Pick up your weights (use light ones!).  Perform 5 bicep curls, and after counting down 5, 4, 3, 2, 1, blast off!  Do one overhead press.  Repeat 4 more times (5 total, for 25 bicep curls in this set).
  • 1: Standing with feet shoulder-width apart, perform 5 squats.  After counting down 5, 4, 3, 2, 1, blast off!  Jump as high as you can, reaching arms to the ceiling.  Repeat 4 more times (5 total, for 25 squats in this set).
  • Repeat this entire thing up to 5 times to feel the burn!  (You’ll end up doing 125 squats in the entire workout, for example).

After all of that (probably because I couldn’t get the number “5” out of my head), I tacked on my Flat Abs in 5 Minutes workout (without the warm-up) … try it if you want to feel the burn! (Click on the picture to be taken to the original post, which gives explanations and video links for all the moves!)

5 minutes to flat abs

So tell me in the comments … Do you like doing strength and cardio on the same days, or do you reserve strength for some days and cardio for others?  Any questions you’d like to see covered in a future Workout Wednesday post?


  1. Jessie

    Well doesn’t this workout sound like fun! I love that you included a rocket ship. So clever!

    • Megan Lyons

      Thanks, Jessie! The rocket ship is so random, but that’s what happens when I try to be creative :). It’s a fun workout!

    • Megan Lyons

      I hope you liked the workout if you got a chance to try it, Kaila! It’s harder than it looks, but in a good way!

  2. Sara @ LovingOnTheRun

    I enjoy strength training and cardio on the same days, but I know that as I get busier that will be harder to do so I just do it while I still can 🙂

    • Megan Lyons

      I’m the same way, Sara … if it’s quick strength workouts like this, I like to do it on the same day. But if I ever do a “real” lifting session, it usually takes enough time that I don’t squeeze in cardio as well. It all depends on the day!

  3. Ruthie@ShesWickedHealthy

    Love these workouts! I’m going to do the ab one at home today – trying to incorporate more ab work these days so perfect timing, thanks!

    • Megan Lyons

      Thanks for the Twitter shout out when you liked the workout, Ruthie! Glad you got a chance to try it!

  4. Amy @ Long Drive Journey

    I like doing strength and cardio on separate days. That way I feel like my body is fresh for both. It’s funny because I would like to work with a trainer or something like that for strength, but I would HATE to do that for cardio. The idea of someone yelling at me to run faster makes me want to throw up! Haha. I’m not sure why that is!

    • Megan Lyons

      Oh my goodness, I’ve never thought about that, but I’m with you! Even when I’m pushing myself in cardio sessions, I prefer just that – pushing MYSELF. Whereas with weights, I love things like Body Pump where someone is pushing me! Funny!

  5. Christine @ Gotta Eat Green

    Ooo this looks like a good one! I did the Fitnessista’s week 1 shape up workout yesterday and booooy it had me sweating. I love finding awesome workouts from my blog friends. I like to do strength and cardio on the same day. Why not get it all done!

    • Megan Lyons

      Awesome! I bookmarked that one but haven’t had a chance to do it yet! I also love finding workouts from other bloggers. When I’m feeling uninspired, it makes things so easy!

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    • Megan Lyons

      So glad you liked it, Jillienne! Thanks so much for the cute Instagram/ Twitter picture shout out – it made my day!

  6. Arman @ thebigmansworld

    Actually going to bookmark this because I need more hotel room style workouts which only require dumbbells!

    Seeing as you travelled in your last job a fair bit, I wouldn’t mind more posts like this where equipment and space are minimal- and time effective too 🙂

  7. Kim

    This workout looks awesome!! I love things like this if I’m short on time or just want to tack something on at the end of a run or other workout!!!

  8. Caitlin

    I love this workout and the little cardio blast-off you get with each move. I pinned it! I tend to get anxious about not doing cardio so unless I’m taking Group Power which is a total body weightlifting class (I push REALLY hard during it and my HR gets up at times), I do either cardio + weights or just cardio. Plus I do abs each day, to conclude my workouts. Just 5 minutes a day instead of longer sessions a few days a week – I find I stick with it better that day. On days I do cardio and weights I’m almost always doing just 30 minutes of cardio, because it’s hard to work up the energy to do an all-out workout with weights after a longer cardio session.

    • Megan Lyons

      Thanks for pinning, Caitlin! I’ve always meant to ask – is Group Power just like Body Pump? If so, I can completely see how that could be considered a total body workout that would allow you to “check off” cardio for the day. And I hear you on limiting the cardio when you do weights! I’m so focused on running right now that I end up limiting my weights to a few 20 minute sessions here or there, but after the marathon I’m going to balance out a bit!

      • Caitlin

        Yes Group Power is just like Body Pump! Just a different company.

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Megan Lyons Headshot

Hi! I'm Megan Lyons,

the voice behind The Lyons’ Share. I love all things health, wellness, and fitness-related, and I hope to share some of my passion with you. Thanks for stopping by!
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