Smutty Fitness: A Captain Marvel-inspired workout
So, I am a little late to the Captain Marvel party (finally just saw the movie) and it has me inspired to create an ass-kicking, strength-building workout to help pull out the superhero in all of us. I read Sarah’s review and one thing that she said about the movie stuck with me: “This movie has a big heart, and an earnest belief that to try, fail, and try again is enough.” Have I not been saying this for years? To lose your fear of failure and to just go out and try! What is the worst that could happen?
With that in mind, here is an intense, powerful, leave-you-gasping-for-air kind of workout that will empower you to keep striving for more, and to not let anything, or anyone, intimidate you. It will be 10 exercises, performed in succession, that promises not to leave a single muscle untouched. Try it once, twice, or three times through, with a short “escape run” (this means go do 2-3 minutes of cardio) in between each set. Begin with a couple of minutes of warmup, a few range-of-motion exercises like front, back, and side lunges, squats, high and low planks, then set a timer up with 1-minute intervals, put your superhero face on, and begin.
Equipment you will need:
1 low step or bench
1 medium dumbbell
1 heavy dumbbell
Exercise 1 – Lunge Row to Side Plank
This move reminds me of a fight scene, elbowing with one hand then backhanding with the other. Start with your left hand on the low step, right hand on a dumbbell with your legs hip distance apart at the top of a pushup position. Step your left foot forward beside the bench and in this low lunge position, pick the dumbbell up and row. Step your foot back and twist to your left, into a side plank with your left arm to the sky. Options here are to put your right hand on the floor, rather than the dumbbell, while in the plank, to make it easier. And to add more difficulty lift your top leg up so you’re balancing on one leg. Do 30 seconds on 1 side then 30 seconds on the other.
Exercise 2 – Flying Jumps
One thing we all know Captain Marvel can do is fly, so this is my version of flying in your workout. Place your left foot onto your step and your right leg placed behind you with your feet hips distance apart and your back knee slightly bent. Reach your arms overhead, press into your foot that is on the bench and jump up as high as you can, driving your right knee up. Once you land, take a moment to reset and do it again. 30 seconds on 1 side then 30 seconds on the other.
Exercise 3 – Core Kicks
To be a superhero, a strong core is a must. Start in a plank position, feet hip distance apart and pull your right leg to 3 o’clock, tap your toe and then place it back, before doing the same on the left leg. Then, pull your right leg underneath you, tapping your toe to 9 o’clock, place it back and do the same on the left side. You have to pull your leg high while at the same time rotating through your ribcage. A major core strengthener.
Exercise 4 – Sumo Squat Burpee
You also have to be able to duck down and get back up quick when doing superhero things so here is an exercise that does both. Use your heavier dumbbell for this and begin with it in both hands with your feet wide, parallel and your body in a squat. Get low enough that you don’t have to bend over to put the weight down, then jump yourself to a half burpee (see video) before jumping forward and standing tall, pressing the weight overhead. If you want to add flight to this exercise, jump up high when you stand tall and press the weight up.
Exercise 5 – Agility Skaters
Superheroes do a lot of running, in every way but a straight line. Quick and agile is key. Place your dumbbell in between your feet then stand on one leg to the side of the weight. Hop from that foot to your other foot and then back again (3 times), touch the weight and then do it again. Each time you touch the weight you should be standing on a different foot and touching with a different hand.
Exercise 6 – Power Presses
Super heroes are powerful, and Captain marvel is no exception. This move is inspired by her power fists. Start on your back with your feet hip distance apart and the weight in your right hand, elbow bent and resting on the ground. Press your right arm straight and as you do press your hips to the sky. Lower your hips and the weight and switch sides after 30 seconds.
Exercise 7 – Side bend press
When you’re fighting other superheroes, you need to be able to move your body away from whatever it is they are throwing at you while still throwing your own punches. Place a light weight in your right at your shoulder, left hand on your hip and feet hip distance apart. Press your hips to the left as you reach your weight to the right and then return back to your starting position. 30 seconds a side will be just fine!
Exercise 8 – Plank Wall Climbs
Climbing buildings is a must as a superhero and this exercise is just like that. Start in a plank position. Shift your body weight forward and as you do that pull your right knee to the outside of your right elbow, pulling your back ribs up to the sky. Squeeze your knee to your arm then step back and do the other side. Your abs and shoulders will be done after 60 seconds.
Exercise 9 – Jumping Rows
You also have to be quick when picking things up off the floor, so this jumping row is perfect for that. Put a weight on the ground between your feet, bend your knees and with a flat spine pick the weight up towards your hip, driving your elbow back. Put the weight down, do a 180 degree hop and then pick it up with the other hand.
Exercise 10 – Rotation runs
The most important thing as a superhero is to be fast. So, stand in one spot, arms out in front and run on the spot. But there is a trick to this… as you run you have to twist your upper body and pull your knee to your opposite hand. It isn’t about bringing your hands to your knees, as that is easy. Bring your knees up and up high!