Want to take your fitness to another level this month? Whether your goal is to go from the couch to the star of your company’s corporate soccer league, or to simply release stress and get in a great workout, this plan is for you. Over the next five weeks I’ll be delivering fun, fast routines that will get you safely into the game.
Each workout will consist of moves for preventing injury, improving speed and agility, and strengthening cardio and core. All of these components are needed to perform at your best—on the field and off! Do the workout each week, every other day alternating with your favorite cardio—walking, running, biking, whatever you enjoy. And if you are playing soccer, warm up and then skip your workout on Game Days.
All you need is YOU! But feel free to use objects around you if need be—things like chairs, stairs, or benches can make the moves more challenging and more fun. Ready to get started? Here’s workout number one!
Warm Up (5 to 10 minutes)
Take up to 10 minutes to warm up your body any way that you would like. Biking, walking, dynamic stretching (moving through a stretch, rather than statically holding a stretch for more than 5 seconds) are all great. Pick anything that gets your body moving and ready to go!
Circuit (8 minutes)
After you complete a warm-up, you’ll go into a quick circuit workout. There are a total of eight exercises. Perform each exercise for 30 seconds, take a small rest to catch your breath, and then move on to the next. You’ll complete the circuit twice before moving on to the conditioning component of the workout.
Balance Stand on one leg for 15 seconds; switch legs and repeat. Keep a slight bend in the knee. If it’s too easy try closing your eyes!? (0:00-0:30)
High knees as fast as you can for 15 sec. Then quickly go into Butt Kicks for 15 seconds. Push yourself and try to get those knees and heels up to hip level! (00:30-1:00)
Glute Bridge March Lie on your back with your knees bent, heels digging into the ground. Lift your hips off the ground so that from your knees to your chest you are in a nice straight line. Pick your bent right knee up into a “march” position, meaning bring it towards your chest in the air, bring it back down, then do the same with your left knee. Then put your hips back on the ground. That is one rep. Do as many reps as you can in 30 seconds. Make sure you are keeping your core and glutes tight as you lift. (1:00-1:30)
Walking Push-up Get into a high plank position with elbows straight. While keeping your core nice and tight, walk with your hands and feet 4 steps to your right (R, L, R, L), and do a push-up. Then walk 4 steps left (L, R, L, R), and do a push-up. Do as many reps as you can in 30 seconds. (1:30-2:00)
Lateral Bounding If space is limited, you can perform this exercise in place. If you have plenty of room, you can bound forward. Start with your feet shoulder width apart. With your knees slightly bent explode off your left leg laterally and land onto your right leg, with your knee slightly bent to prevent injury. Then explode off your right leg and land on your left. Get as many reps as you can in 30 seconds. (2:00-2:30)
Squats Stand with your feet just outside of shoulder width.While keeping your core engaged and chest upright sit back into a squat as low as you can (do not go past 90 degrees). If a quarter squat is all you can do that is fine! Just be comfortable.You can also perform a wall sit and hold for 30 seconds instead of doing multiple reps if it’s easier on your joints. (2:30-3:00)
Shoulder Shrugs You can use a wall for this, or perform it standing in place. Sit back into a squat, sitting nice and tall, chest up. Take your arms up to shoulder level on your side with a bent elbow and fingers facing up. While keeping your core and shoulders tight extend your arms slowly upward and then slowly bring them back down to neutral. Repeat as many reps as you can in 30 seconds. (3:00-3:30)
Bicycles Sit down on the ground in a V-up position with your knees bent, hands at the sides of your head, and elbows bent. Take your right elbow and cycle it to your left knee, then bring it back. Then take your left elbow and cycle it towards your right knee. Do this in a continuous pattern as fast or as slow as you want for 30 seconds. (3:30-4:00)
Repeat! Do the series of eight exercise again for a total of 4 minutes. If you need to take 30 second to 1 minute to catch your breath, do so before repeating the exercises. (4:00-8:00)
Conditioning Segment (2 minutes)
Jump Rope If you have one available use it. If not, you can fake it! Skip normally for 30 seconds. (0:00-0:30)
Rest for 30 seconds. (0:30-1:00)
Jump Rope with 2 feet for 30 seconds. (1:00-1:30)
Jump Rope 15 seconds on your right foot only, and then 15 seconds on left foot only. (1:30-2:00)
Cool Down (5 to 10 minutes)
It is vital that you cool down after each workout to reduce inflammation and prevent injury. Use this time any way you would like. Walk and stretch—holding each stretch about 15 seconds, or try foam rolling. If you don’t have a foam roller you can use a softball or soccer ball, or just sit and stretch out well.
Come back next week for another #soccerfit workout from Lauren Sesselmann!
Lauren Sesselmann is a professional soccer player for the Houston Dash in the NWSL and a member of the Canadian national team. She won a gold medal in the 2011 Pan American Games, a bronze medal in the 2012 Olympics, and recently competed in the 2015 World Cup. Lauren is also the host and co-owner of the Fit as A Pro brand and owner of Success Through Soccer, which holds soccer clinics for kids all around the U.S. and Canada. Look for her in Dark Awakening, her first feature length film role, and in an upcoming movie in 2016.
This information is for educational purposes only and is not intended as a substitute for medical diagnosis or treatment. You should not use this information to diagnose or treat a health problem or condition. Always check with your doctor before changing your diet, altering your sleep habits, taking supplements, or starting a new fitness routine.