5 Exercises to Step Up Your Fitness Level

The human body is an amazing thing. It can push itself to limits that some of us don't even want to contemplate. If you have ever worked out then you've done an exercise that's challenged you.

Maybe you felt your muscles burn a little—or a lot. Maybe you know that heart pumping, gut clenching feeling you get when one more rep might make you vomit.

Our list is composed of exercises that people do that tend to induce the feelings described above—if you can even do them.

Yes, we know, dangling off a tree by your fingertips is most likely a harder exercise than a jazz kick, as is throwing yourself down a class five rapid. This is not that kind of list.

These exercises, most of which you could do at home, are real exercises. We've seen all of them done by people who aren't fitness models or trainers. These are exercises a strong, fit, flexible normal person could do if they wanted a challenge. No exotic location or insurance waiver required.

L Hold on Dip Bars

Such an innocuous name for such a challenging exercise. It's easy, just lift yourself up onto your wrists while suspending yourself in the air and then bring your legs up and hold it—then repeat.

One Armed Burpee

If you ever done a normal burpee you know it is one of the more challenging series of movements you can do. Now imagine doing this series of movement while supporting your entire body weight - on one arm.

Squat Straddle Handstand

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Look at the effortless way she seems to glide between being planted on the ground in a squat and then doing a split in the air. In a perfect handstand. Then watch her do it again.

Jazz Kicks

Sometimes an exercise is hard not because it requires super strength but because it requires a combination of strength and flexibility. Go ahead, kick your foot up in the air and touch your nose while keeping your back straight and see how easy it is.

Triple Clap Pushup

Some people clap once when the do a pushup. Some people clap twice. The real challenge is clapping three times, all while propelling yourself from a plank to almost a full upright position. This move requires strength and super speed, the third clap is so fast you can barely see it.

Try a training plan to step up your fitness level.

Dena Stern is the Content & Community Manager for Exercise.com. She works with a highly trained group of nutritionists, trainers, yoga and Pilates instructors and athletes to provide the best information, tools and motivation related to exercise and fitness.  

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