We talked about jump squats and I mentioned my love/hate relationship with pushups, so now I feel compelled to explain how they can be combined into one great cardio and total body workout. It's called a Burpee, otherwise known as a Squat Thrust. Let me explain.
1) Start in a standing position with your feet hip-width apart, arms at your side.
2) Squat to the floor, placing your palms flat on the ground in front of your body.
3) Kick your legs back, landing in pushup position.
4) Quickly kick your legs forward to squat position, then stand up.
Easy as pie, right?
A few pointers: As you place your hands on the floor, you'll want to shift your weight forward slightly so that you can kick your legs back as described. Keep your abs tight when you hit the pushup position, and if you can, actually perform the pushup. This increases the difficulty and engages even more of your upper body. For a lower body boost, jump instead of standing up at the end—just like a jump squat! Whether you put one or both of these extra moves into the Burpee, it's up to you. Choose based on your current fitness level to avoid injury. No worries if you leave them out. I honestly don't do the pushup, but I'll get there eventually. Even this guy had to start somewhere: