Try This Bootcamp Challenge Workout

This bootcamp challenge involves doing a variety of tough, total body moves designed to challenge every aspect of your fitness: strength, endurance, balance and agility. There's cardio, there's strength and there are tons of compound exercises that will keep your heart rate elevated for as many circuits as you have time for.


See your doctor before trying this workout if you have any injuries, illnesses or other conditions. This workout is best for intermediate/advanced exercisers.

Equipment Needed

Various weighted dumbbells, a medicine ball, an exercise ball and a step or bench

How to Do the Bootcamp Challenge Workout

  • Perform the exercises in each circuit one after the other, with very short rests between exercises.
  • Perform each circuit once for a shorter workout, twice for a longer one.
  • Modify the workout to fit your fitness level, available equipment and goals.

Warm Up

Make sure you warm up with at least 5 minutes of any cardio machine or activity. Try step touches, marching in place, jogging in place or other cardio moves to get your blood flowing.

Circuit 1


Squat and place your hands on the floor next to your feet.

In an explosive movement, jump feet backward into a push-up position. Jump feet back between hands and stand up.

Add a jump at the end for more intensity, if desired or, for a modification, step the feet back instead of jumping.

Repeat for 60 seconds.

Front and Reverse Lunges

Holding medium/heavy weights, step the left leg forward into a lunge.

Push back to start, lifting the left knee to hip level.

Take the left leg back into a reverse lunge and push off the toes to come back to start.

Repeat for 30 seconds and switch sides. 

Push-Up Jacks

Begin in a plank position and jump the feet wide at the same time you bend the elbows into a pushup, going as low as you can. In a smooth movement, spring back up, jumping your feet back together into your plank.

As a modification, keep the knees bent to protect the lower back.

Continue for 30 seconds, rest briefly and then try 30 more seconds.

Repeat Circuit 1 or move on to the next circuit.

Circuit 2

Rear Lunges with Med Ball Touch

Hold a medicine ball overhead and step back into a straight leg lunge with the right leg.

Swing the leg up into a kick while you bring the med ball towards the toe. Go as quickly as you can.

Repeat for 30 seconds on each side.

Squats With Overhead Press

Stand with feet hip-width apart and hold your medium or heavy weights over the shoulders or at your sides.

Lower into a squat and push into the heels to stand up. At the same time, press the weights overhead.

Repeat for 60 seconds. 

Rear Lunges With Double Arm Row

Hold weights in each hand and step back with the right leg into a rear lunge with a straight leg.

Tip forward, back flat, and pull the elbows up into a double arm row.

Step back to start and repeat for 30 seconds before switching legs.

Side Bridges with Hip Drops

Lie on your side, balanced on the forearm and feet (hips and feet stacked). Put the knee down on the floor for a modification.

Holding the torso steady, lower the hip a few inches.

Bring the hip up and repeat for 30 seconds on each side.

Repeat Circuit 2 or move on to Circuit 3.

Circuit 3

Squat and Swings

Hold a heavy weight (or kettlebell) and squat low, swinging the weight between the knees.

Stand up, swinging the weight up overhead. Use momentum and brace the abs, keeping the chest up and back straight to avoid straining the lower back.

Repeat for 30 seconds on each side.

Sliding Side Lunges

Put a paper plate or a Gliding Disc under the left foot and hold a heavy dumbbell in the left hand.

Keep your weight in the right leg and bend the knee into a squat as you slide your left foot out to the side.

Take the dumbbell to the floor if you can.

Push back up, sliding the left foot in as you stand.

Repeat for 30 seconds on each side.

Clean and Presses

Hold medium/heavy weights in front of the thighs and pull the arms up into an upright row

Quickly flip your elbows so that they are now pointed straight ahead instead of out to the side, bringing the weights to your shoulders.

Reverse the process and repeat for 60 seconds.

Single Arm Overhead Squats

Stand in a wide stance holding light-medium weights in both hands.

Press the weight in your right arm up overhead while holding your left arm straight in front of you for balance. Lower into a squat until the thighs are parallel to the floor.

Press back up, keeping the arm up, and repeat for 30 seconds on each side. 

Repeat Circuit 3 or move on to Circuit 4.

Circuit 4

Toe Taps to a Step

Stand in front of a step, a staircase or a small platform.

Tap the left toe to the step, quickly shift the feet in the air and tap the step with the right toe.

Alternate feet for 60 seconds, going as fast as you can.

Split Squats

Holding medium/heavy weights, prop the left foot on a step or platform behind you

Bend the knees and lower into a lunge.

Push through the front heel to stand up and repeat for 30 seconds, then switch sides.  

Hammer Curls with Power Squat

Hold heavy weights with the palms facing in.

You're going to go into a squat and, as your hips come down, power the weights up into a hammer curl while squatting as low as you can.

Stand up as you lower the weights and repeat for 60 seconds. 

Tricep Kickbacks

Tip from the hips with the back flat, abs in. 

Pull the elbows up next to torso and extend the arms out behind you, contracting triceps.

Lower and repeat for 60 seconds. 

Repeat Circuit 4 or end with a cool-down.

By Paige Waehner, CPT
Paige Waehner is a certified personal trainer, author of the "Guide to Become a Personal Trainer," and co-author of "The Buzz on Exercise & Fitness."