Sunday, November 23, 2014

20 Minute Plank, Push-up & Burn: Workout to Burn Fat and Sculpt Abs

Hi Everyone!

I hope you're ready for a new workout (the video is below)! This was a fun, but challenging set. I created this workout to focus on strengthening the core and burning fat. This routine will also work your arms, chest and back. 

Every other exercise is a plank or push-up variation. If you are still working on building to a full push-up you can do the plank variation of the movement. For example, for the toe touch push-ups you can choose to skip the push-up (or perform it from your knees), alternating the plank position with the toe reaches. 

It is worth building up to the push-up! Push-ups are one of the best workouts you can do to strengthen your core. Just make sure you use appropriate form. It's better to do two full push-ups with good form and then switch to plank, than to do 10 push-ups with incorrect form. 

Remember, there is always a way to modify a workout to make it work for you. If it is challenging for you it is working. If it gets easy, it's time to increase the intensity. 

I went through this workout 1X today, and paired it with a 5.5 mile run outside. I haven't been running lately (the cold weather has had a negative effect on my running motivation), but I want to start incorporating running back into my routine. I loved running the half marathon last month, and I want to build my training base up and do another one. 

I am also continuing to work on my flexibility. I shared the photo below on my Instagram page. I am practicing my splits supported with the dip station to help maintain my alignment. I am also doing them unsupported, and practicing on both sides. Why do splits? It is great for your hip, hamstring and groin flexibility. It also helps relieve sciatica. Splits can help improve your posture, and the bio-mechanical alignment of your hips, which impacts your efficiency during all other exercises and decreases your risk of injury. 

One Week Progress. Split Practice. 

I hope you enjoy today's workout! Get ready to work up a sweat!
PS You can check in with your progress  on FacebookInstagram or Twitter. #BenderFitness or @BenderFitness 

PPS You can find my sports bra here: and get 15% off with the code BenderFitness at checkout. 

Equipment: Gymboss Interval Timer set for 15 rounds of 30/50. 
My cardio of choice was jumping rope, but you can also choose High Knees. 

1. Toe Touch Push-ups
2. Side Plank Knee/Lift (right)
3. Side Plank Knee/Lift (left)
4. Reverse Plank Leg Lift
5. Criss Cross Plank
6. Elevator Plank (right)
7. Elevator Plank (left)
8. Dive Bomber
9. Windshield Wiper Plank
10. Plank Jack Push-up
11. Knee Drop Plank
12. Supergirl Push-up
13. Heel Press Plank (right)
14. Heel Press Plank (left)
15. Rotating Push-ups

Repeat 1-3X

Toe Touch Push-Ups:
Start in Plank Position. Reach your right hand back to touch your left foot, while lifting the hips.
Return to Plank position, complete a push-up.
Repeat on Opposite Side.
Video Tutorial here: Toe Touch Push-Up

Side Plank Knee/Lift:
Start in Side Plank. Lift the leg (as you would in a jumping jack).
Bring the Knee in Toward your Chest.
Return to starting position. Complete all reps on the right, and then repeat on the left. 

Reverse Plank Leg Lift:
Start in a reverse plank position. Lift the hips to form a straight line from heels, to hips to shoulders.
Place hands below shoulders.
Hold this position, or increase the intensity by alternating leg lifts.
Keep the hips lifted and core tight throughout each exercise. 

Criss-Cross Plank:
Start in plank position. Bring the right knee in toward the left elbow.
Keeping the knee forward transition it toward the left elbow.
Return to plank.
Bring left knee in toward right elbow, and then across to the left elbow.
Continue to alternate sides. 

Elevator Plank:
Start in plank position. Bring your right knee in toward your right arm.
Move your knee up and down from wrist toward arm pit.
Keep the core strong and engaged though out the exercise.
Repeat on the other side. 

Dive Bomber:
Transition from Plank to Down Dog Position.
Bend both arms and sweep the chest toward the floor.
Allow the hips to follow as you push forward to Up-Dog.
Bend the arms to return to starting position and repeat. 

Windshield Wiper Plank:
Start in Plank Position (on forearms or extended arms).
Alternating legs, take a step out to the side, and return to plank position. 

Plank Jack:
Start in plank position.
Jump Both Feet out as you would in a jumping jack.
Hold Plank or add a push-up.
Return to starting position and repeat.
Video Tutorial Here: 
Plank Jack

Knee Drop Plank:
Start in a forearm plank with hands clasped.
Form a straight line from heels, to hips to shoulders.
Keep the hips in the same position and bend the knees to just above (or lightly touch) the ground.
Keep the core strong and tight.
Return to starting position and repeat. 

Supergirl Push-Up:
Start in Plank.
Reach Right Arm and Left Foot toward opposite walls.
Return to Plank. Optional: Complete a push-up.
Return to plank.
Reach Left Arm and Right Foot.
Repeat, alternating sides. 

Heel Press Plank:
Start in a Forearm Plank.
Bend Right Knee, Flex the Foot, and Press your Heel to the Ceiling.
Continue to pulse and press.
Complete full cycle, and repeat on the opposite side. 

Rotating Push-Ups:
Start in Plank Position with feet hip distance or slightly wider apart.
Complete a Push-Up (optional).
Rotate into a right side plank, coming onto the sides of the feet.
Reach the left arm up toward the ceiling.
Return to Plank.
Complete Push-Up
Continue to alternate sides. 


  1. Wow! I'm definitely gonna try it tomorrow, thank you very much!!!
    You're such an inspiration…

  2. I love every part of workout, it was tough and I got it done on time, thanks

  3. Melissa will it be possible to have 30 day challenge focusing on specifics of upper or lower body? I hope you'll be able to consider it in future. I love all your workouts and I do it 5-6x a week incorporating 3 of your workouts. Thanks!

  4. Loved it. Elevator planks are KILLER��. I felt it in all the right AB places though ��. Also, I underestimated those reverse plank leg lifts.
    Loved this workout. I will be revisiting it again.