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These Pumpkin-Wielding Workouts Scorch Serious Calories

Photo credit: Getty Images/marekuliasz

Photo credit: Getty Images/marekuliasz

Get your workout in the Halloween spirit by swapping your dumbells or kettlebells for a hefty pumpkin instead. These high-intensity moves will help you carve serious muscle and burn off any extra calories that may creep in from your Halloween treats.

Pull these creative exercises together to create a killer circuit. Go through each move once and then repeat as an entire circuit two to three times. Your total workout time should be about 15 – 20 minutes, the ideal range of time for improving your cardiovascular fitness and lowering your BMI. Pumpkin picking tip: Pick one with a thick, sturdy stem and wide base that weighs about 10 – 15 pounds.

Pumpkin squat and press
Stand with your feet slightly wider than shoulder-width apart, holding your pumpkin with a hand on each side and your arms raised above your head. Push your hips back and bend your knees to lower into a squat position, bringing the pumpkin chest-level. Take extra care to make sure your knees do not come over your toes. Push into your heels to explode back up to the starting position. That’s one rep. Perform 15 reps.

Lunge with pumpkin rotation
Stand with your feet hip-distance apart your elbows bent and forearm parallel to the floor holding your pumpkin. Step forward with your right foot and lower into a lunge. Twist your torso and your pumpkin to the right, and then return to center. Push off your right foot and return to standing. That’s one rep. Complete 15 reps on each side.

Offset pumpkin push-up
Lower into a push-up position with your hands directly under your shoulders and a straight line from your head to ankles. Place one hand on the top of your pumpkin. Bending your elbows, slowly lower your chest to the floor, and then push back up. That’s one rep. Perform 10 reps, then switch your pumpkin to your other hand and complete 10 on the other side.

Russian pumpkin twist
Sitting on the floor, hold your pumpkin with both hands on either side as you would a ball. Bend your knees and lift your feet off the floor, creating a “V”-shape position. Twist your torso side to side while rotating the pumpkin side to side. Focus on keeping your core steady throughout the movement. Twist for 15 reps on each side (30 twists total).

Elevated pumpkin plank with a toe touch
Lower yourself to a plank position with your hands flat on the floor, directly in line with your shoulders. Place your toes on your pumpkin. Hold steady in this position, with your back flat and your core engaged for balance. Tap your left toe to the floor, and then bring it back to the pumpkin. Repeat on the right side. That’s one rep. Alternate toe taps for 30 seconds.

Pumpkin climbers
Go into a push-up position with your front hands gripping each side of your pumpkin. Your hands should be directly under your shoulders and your body in a straight line from head to ankles. Keeping your back flat and hands steady on the pumpkin, bend your right knee toward your chest, reverse the movement, then repeat with your left knee to create a sprinting motion. Climb for 30 seconds.

For more information on how to keep your fitness routine on track during the holidays see how Independence Blue Cross can be a part of your plan for health and wellness.