This is not Crossfit. This is not Soulcycle. Hell, this isn't really a workout—or at least not a strenuous one. Because we've long been supporters of the less-is-more fitness category, we figured there had to be a way to incorporate some movement into a standard morning routine without requiring a trip to the gym. So we created one! Think of it more like active multitasking that's easy enough to do immediately upon waking up, developed with the help of Traci Copeland (title: Nike Master Trainer). Literally anyone—the running haters, the nothing-but-Modelfit crew, the Pilates reformer converts—can do this and actually enjoy it. Cute pajamas help. Here's how to start:
Traci says: "Getting out of bed, the thing that tends to be the most tight are our hip flexors. That’s the thing that allows us to walk and run, so doing things like knee hugs help warm them up right away. Hugging one knee at a time, you can go for 30 seconds each side 2-3 times to wake up your legs."
No, don't get up yet—do a couple of quick crunches first. Bed crunches won't get you a six pack, but you do get points for engaging your core first thing.
Leg lifts suck less when your mattress is supporting you.
Traci says: "Your quads, glutes and hamstrings are also going to be pretty tight, so a good thing to do is wake up those core muscle groups. The way you can do that is by thinking about getting out of your bed and standing up and doing that 5 times. It’s like a chair pose, but assisted."
For a bit of real fitness, here come the tricep dips. "Do 10 or 15 of these on an incline, using your bed—now you're waking up the upper body."
Instagram break! Scroll while practicing your wall sits.
For anyone who wears heels or is actively avoiding their barre class, calf raises make great multitasking. Start brushing your teeth and you've got two minutes of these.
Hydrate while balancing on one leg, hitting your core, your glutes, and your brain (it takes some concentration). Traci also recommends a more strenuous version: "You stand and balance on one leg and spell your name with your foot for ankle mobility. If you want something to wake up your core, you can lift your leg a little bit higher and go through the alphabet. Do that on both sides."
Job well done. Get some coffee, go to work, or get back in bed. At least you've already gotten something done.
Keep going! Read up on ITG's guide to low-impact ballet exercises for better posture here.