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The Advanced 7-Minute Workout - NYTimes.com

The Advanced 7Minute Workout


Gretchen Renold

Octoer 24, 2014 9:05 am

Gotonytimes.com/7minuteworkouttotryournewWebapp.
Ever since the magazine published the Scientific 7-Minute Workout in
May last year, readers have been writing and tweeting their requests for an
updated, more advanced version. For them, the workout became too easy or
humdrum, as tends to happen when exercises are repeated without
variation. So here it is: a new, more technically demanding regimen, one
that requires a couple of dumbbells but still takes only seven minutes.
To come up with the workout, I turned to Mark Verstegen, the founder
and president of the Phoenix-based EXOS, a company that focuses on
health and athletic performance. He and his colleagues train, among others,
N.F.L. players and the German national soccer team, which won the World
Cup this year. EXOS also develops in-house fitness and nutritional
programs for corporations, so Mr. Verstegen has experience working with
those of us who dont already have bowling-ball biceps and vast reservoirs
of endurance and gritty resolve. He and his colleagues, Mr. Verstegen says,
know how difficult it can be to find the time and motivation to work out as
often as we know we should. Hence a routine that can be completed in just
minutes and without much space no more than a hotel room or an office,
for example.
Taken together, the exercises stress and strengthen muscle groups
throughout the upper body, lower body and torso. The full workout (see
step-by-step instructions below) also provides a compressed but intense
interval-style endurance workout. Anyone who completes multiple push-

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The Advanced 7-Minute Workout - NYTimes.com

up-to-row-to-burpee movements in 60 seconds (Exercise 3) will raise his or


her heart rate substantially. The subsequent 30 seconds of side bridges
(Exercise 4) provide a brief aerobic respite before the aerobically
demanding Exercise 5 (single-leg Romanian dead lift to curl to press).
Theres a lot of scientific support for the benefits of this sort of highintensity interval training. In recent months, articles have reported that
even a few minutes of interval-style exercise increase endurance, squelch
appetite and improve metabolic and cardiovascular health in sedentary
adults more effectively than traditional prolonged-endurance exercise. In
other words, seven minutes or so of relatively punishing training may
produce greater gains than an hour or more of gentler exercise. Whats
more, study subjects who did a combination of prolonged exercises (like
running or cycling) and high-intensity interval workouts typically reported
preferring the intervals.
Interval programs based on cycling, walking and running come with a
downside, however: They improve overall fitness and health but do little to
improve muscular strength other than in the legs. By contrast, the New
Scientific 7-Minute Workout does more than build the large, obvious
muscles that most of us can name-check, as Mr. Verstegen puts it the
quads and glutes, for example; its exercises also engage smaller, often
overlooked muscles in the back, abdomen, shoulders and hips that, when
neglected and weak, contribute to back, neck and knee pain.
The workout should combat a desk jobs aches, pain and fatigue, Mr.
Verstegen says, as well as teach clean and efficient movement patterns,
even to those of us who tend to be clumsy. The exercises demand precision
and, over time, should instill graceful, athletic coordination. Done correctly,
they should make you healthier, stronger, less prone to injury and
athletically more capable.
As a whole, the routine is also extremely scalable, Mr. Verstegen says.
People who are out of shape today may be able to complete only one or two
reverse lunges with rotation during the 30 seconds of Exercise 1. But after

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several weeks of practice, they may be able to perform five or more


repetitions, he says, and can continue to intensify the routines physical
demands by adding as many repetitions as possible in the time allotted.
It should be noted that the 7-Minute Workouts, the original and the
advanced versions, are not meant to be your sole exercise. Any routine, if
thats all you do, will become monotonous and demotivating, Mr.
Verstegen says. So mix up your workouts. Perhaps alternate the old and the
new seven-minute regimens over days or weeks. Go for a run at lunch. Join
an over-40 rugby league. Buy a bike or a Speedo use them together in a
triathlon.
The idea is to develop a relationship and routine with your body, Mr.
Verstegen says, so that it feels strong and healthy and you feel energized
and excited to be up and moving.
AFreeMobileApp
The New York Times is now offering a free mobile app for the popular
Scientific 7-Minute Workout and the new Advanced 7-Minute Workout.
The app offers a step-by-step guide to both 7-minute workouts,
offering animated illustrations of the exercises, as well as a timer and audio
cues to help you get the most out of your seven minutes.
Go to nytimes.com/7-minute-workout on your phone, tablet or other
device to try our new Web app.
For more information on installing the app, which can be used on an
iOS, Android or other device, visit For a 7-minute Workout, Download Our
New App.
StepbyStepInstructionsfortheAdvanced7Minute
Workout
1.ReverseLunge,ElbowtoInstepWithRotation,Alternating
Sides(30seconds)

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1. Extend right leg behind you, with left knee bent and right hand on
ground (the reverse lunge).
2. Bend left arm and bring inside front (left) knee, then raise and point
right arm and chest skyward. (rotation).
3. Place both hands on ground while straightening both legs and
flexing ankles; return to standing position.
4. Repeat with left leg and right arm. Repeat.
2.LateralPillarBridge,LeftSide(30seconds)
1. Lie on left side. Lift side off ground.
2. Point right arm toward sky.
3.PushUptoRowtoBurpee(60seconds)
1. Position self over both dumbbells, legs extended back. Do a pushup.
2. Lift and lower right dumbbell, then left dumbbell (as if rowing).
3. Rapidly pull legs forward. Release dumbbells.
4. Jump forcefully upward (completing a Burpee).
4.LateralPillarBridge,RightSide(30seconds)
1. Lie on right side. Lift side off ground.
2. Point left arm toward sky.
5a.SingleLegRomanianDeadLifttoCurltoPress,LeftSide
(60seconds)
1. Hold dumbbells at hips.
2. Lean forward, balancing on left leg while extending right leg back
(the Romanian dead lift).
3. Return to start position.
4. Curl dumbbells toward chest (the Curl).
5. Raise both dumbbells over head (the Press).
6. Lower weights to chest.
7. Lower weights to hips and resume starting position. Repeat.

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5b.SingleLegRomanianDeadLifttoCurltoPress,Right
Side(60seconds)
1. Hold dumbbells at hips.
2. Lean forward, balancing on right leg while extending left leg back
(the Romanian deadlift).
3. Return to start position.
4. Curl dumbbells toward chest (the Curl).
5. Raise both dumbbells over head (the Press).
6. Lower weights to chest.
7. Lower weights to hips and resume starting position. Repeat.
6.PlankWithArmLift(30seconds)
1. Assume push-up position (also known as The Plank).
2. Lift one arm in front of you. Lower. Lift other arm. Repeat rapidly.
7.LateralLungetoOverheadTricepsExtension(60seconds)
1. Stand straight, holding dumbbells at shoulder height.
2. Take big step to right side, bending right knee while keeping left leg
straight (a Lateral Lunge). Return to upright.
3. Lift dumbbells over head. Lower them back toward shoulder. Step
to other side. Repeat.
8.BentOverRow(60seconds)
1. Holding dumbbells, lean forward, knees bent, back straight.
2. Lift one dumbbell until it reaches chest height (as if rowing). Lower.
3. Lift dumbbell on other side and lower. Repeat on each side while
maintaining bent-over position.
AversionofthisarticleappearedintheOct.26issueofTheNewYork
TimesMagazine.
A version of this article appears in print on 10/26/2014, on page MM24 of the
NewYork edition with the headline: The New Scientific 7Minute Workout.

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2015 The New York Times Company

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