Strip down the barbell because a weight plate is the only thing you need to create a world-beating workout that will build your muscles and burn fat. Weight plates are the kind of thing that are found in abundance in both gyms and half formed or forgotten workout places. This means there’s pretty much no shortage of them and you can easily create a workout that can be done no matter how busy your local sweat box gets and if you’re looking for a quick workout you can do at home then look no further than this useful piece of equipment. Simply pair it with regular bodyweight moves and you’ll have a rock-star training routine, designed by this month’s cover star who uses it to build shapely shoulders, tighten her core and torch calories. You’ll also get a healthy kick of endurance and motivation thanks to the sheer variety of challenging movements. If you want a session that’s going to get you coming back for more, do this for fail-safe results.
What to do
First complete a 3-5 minute warm-up so your muscles are ready to get moving. Set up an exercise station for yourself, either in the gym or in your own home. All you’ll need is one or two weight plates of varying weight. Once you have access to the space, then do three sets of the following workout, resting two minutes after each circuit.
- Plate Drag (12 reps each side)
Works: quads, glutes, abductors
- A) Stand with your feet together next to the side of a plate and knees slightly bent. Hands placed on hips.
- B) Keep your frame upright and core engaged and stabilized as you extend the leg of the foot closest to the plate out to the side. Drag the plate all the way out to a straight leg position in a controlled manner. Keep your stationary leg slightly bent. Step the stationary foot in back to starting position, after the extended leg is fully straight out to the side, and keep traveling laterally in the same direction.
- Squat With Woodchop (12 reps each side)
Works: glutes, legs, obliques, shoulders
- A) Stand tall with your feet slightly wider than your hips. Your core should be tight and spine straight. Push your hips back while keeping torso upright and chest lifted. Sit back into your heels and keep your knees in line with ankles. Holding the plate in hands with straight arms, bring plate down to the bottom left of body.
- B) Pause for a brief moment then push through heels of feet and glutes to slowly stand up to starting position., while simultaneously on a diagonal lift plate with straight arms up and out to the top right of body. Do all 12 reps in the same diagonal pattern then switch direction and repeat.
- Alternating Lunge with Twist (12 reps each side)
Works: glutes, legs, obliques shoulders
- A) Stand tall with your feet hip-width apart and engage your core. Hold plate in both hands in front of you with slightly bent arms.
- B) Take a big step forward with right leg shifting weight forward so the heel hits the floor first. Lower body until right thigh is parallel to the floor and right shin is vertical. Get left knee close to the ground. Turn torso and hands holding plate to the right side.
- C) With control bring torso and plate back to center. Press into right heel to drive back up to starting position. Perform all 12 on the right side then perform 12 reps on left side.
- Crunch with Overhead Press (15 reps)
Works: abs, shoulders
- A) Sit on the floor with your legs bent and heels on the floor, holding a plate in both hands with straight arms so they’re next to ears and pointed up to ceiling. Keep back flat, torso upright and chest lifted.
- B) Lower your back flat to ground in a controlled, slow manner with your arms and plate still pointed towards ceiling. Lift yourself back up using your ab strength so you return to the start position.
- Front Raise Steering Wheel (12 reps)
Works: shoulders, core
- A) Stand with feet together and soft knees, holding plate in hands in front of your quads. While keeping shoulders down so they’re away from ears and your arms are straight, lift plate up 90 degrees parallel to floor.
- B) Twist the plate to the left then right and repeat for a total of four twists, then bring back down to starting position.
- Shoulder Lateral Raise (12 reps)
- A) Stand tall with your feet together or hip-width apart. Hold a plate in each hand at arm’s length by your sides, so your palms and the plates are facing inward.
- B) Maintain a very slight bend in your elbows; raise arms directly out to sides until shoulder level, palms and plates facing down at the top of the movement. Slowly lower plates back to starting position.
- Resisted Forearm Plank with Plate on Back (1 minute)
Works: shoulders, abs, quads
- A) Begin face down with forearms and toes on the floor and a plate resting on your lower back. Your elbows should be directly under shoulders and forearms facing forward. Head is relaxed looking at floor in front of you.
B) Engage your abdominal muscles, by drawing the navel into spine. Keep your torso and hips in a straight line, in neutral spine position, with your back flat. Ensure your shoulders are down away from ears and make sure your heels are over the ball of feet. Breathe and hold position for 30-60 seconds.