Take your cardio and resistance routine to a whole new level with this weighted ball workout. Combining these movements with the added weight of the ball challenges your stability, builds and tones muscle, and burns a serious amount of fat. A weighted ball or medicine ball is a great tool to use to mix up your routine because you can vary the weight you use, challenge your core, and travel with and store it easily. Weighted exercise balls can be found in a variety of sizes and weights. For this workout I’m using a small eight pound ball with a sand filling.
When you first try this workout, begin with a weight that you can control easily (3–12 lbs) and adjust to a higher weight as you gain more confidence and strength. For best results, warm up for 5–10 minutes then complete all of the following exercises with high intensity, back to back with only 15–30 seconds of rest between each exercise for a total of 4 sets.
Begin in a regular stance with your core engaged and a soft bend in your knee. Raise the weighted ball up over your head and throw the ball with force towards the ground. Lower into a squat position and pick the ball up off of the ground and raise it back up over head. Repeat with intensity for 20 reps. (With this exercise it is important to use a ball that doesn’t bounce! It is no fun if it pops up and hits you on its way up.)
Stand with your feet hip-width apart with your shoulders relaxed and core muscles engaged. Hold the weighted ball between outstretched arms. Keep your arms straight and your feet planted as you bring the ball in a downward diagonal movement towards your left foot, bending in both knees and bringing the ball to the outside of your left foot. Immediately swing the ball up over head to the right side of your body in a sweeping motion to reverse the motion as you stand again. Repeat on this side 10 reps then switch to crossing the body in the opposite direction for 10 reps.
In the same body position as the Overhead Throw, just reverse the motion and from a squat position toss the weighted ball up with force. Watch for it to fall on the ground in front of you and pick up and toss to repeat for a total of 20 reps.
Lunges with Oblique Twist
Extend your arms out in front and engage your arms, chest, and shoulders to hold the ball with a tight squeeze. (To challenge yourself more, try holding the ball with your palms only. Wiggle those fingers to be sure none are touching and continue!) To begin either walking or stationary lunges, begin with a step forward to come into a lunge position and twist the weighted ball the opposite direction of your forward leg. Repeat on the other side as you switch legs and complete 15 on each side.
Side to Side Throws
Standing in the overhead throw position, you will be combining and alternating your downward chop with a ball throw to complete these side to side throws. Begin with your arms overhead holding the weighted ball, core engaged. Take the ball and throw it down with force to the left side. Squat down and pick up the ball and bring it back up over head and throw it down on the right side. Continue alternating side to side for a total of 10–15 throws on each side. Remember to keep your abs tight and engage your oblique muscles for maximum burn!