FITNESS VOCAB: AMRAP

Learn the definition—and how to push yourself harder than usual

Consider this Furthermore series further education for fitness. Here, we help define the terms that all athletes should know.

TERM: AMRAP

DEFINITION: AMRAP stands for as many rounds as possible. When performing an AMRAP circuit, you repeat the set of exercises as many times as you can, usually within a suggested time frame. (Sometimes instructors and trainers use this term to mean “as many reps as possible,” in which case you would perform a single move rather than several.) This training method can help you push yourself to the edge of your abilities, but you should never sacrifice your form. When you can no longer complete a quality rep or round, stop or slow down to a speed that allows you to execute each move properly.

You’ll likely hear this term used in bootcamp or circuit classes, but you can incorporate it into your own workouts, too. Try it with the strength and muscular endurance circuit below. These moves focus on improving posture and strengthening neglected areas of the body, so they’re beneficial for every athlete.  

TO DO IT: Perform each exercise in order, then repeat the entire circuit, performing AMRAP in 5 minutes. 

Pike to Superman Rolls 
Lying face-up with legs together and extended and arms extended above your head, engage your core to bring your hands and feet together so that your body forms a V. (Pause at top for added challenge.) Return to start, then immediately roll your body to the left to turn onto your stomach and perform a Superman, engaging your core by simultaneously lifting your legs and arms as high off the ground as possible. Roll back to your back and repeat, alternating the pike and Superman for 10 to 12 reps.

Single-Leg Dead Lift with Cross-Body Reach 
In a tall standing position, lift right knee as high as possible, then hinge at the hips, reaching right hand towardfloor and extending right leg behind you so that it is parallel to the floor, keeping a long spine and extending your left arm out and back. At the bottom of the move, rotate your torso to the left and pause. Return to start; repeat on opposite side. Alternate for 8 to 10 reps per leg. (Note: This is a dynamic exercise that can either be done from a stationary position or in a forward-progressing skipping motion.)

Lateral Forward Bounding with Backpedal Return  
Using contralateral arm and leg drive, bound diagonally forward with your right foot as far to the right as possible (the trick here is you are actually pushing off the outside leg in the opposing direction, for example, pushing off left leg to go toward the right), then immediately bound to the left with your left foot. Alternate 10 bounds forward, then backpedal back to start and repeat once more.

Broad Jump Burpee 
In one fluid motion, pass through these 3 steps: 1. Squat low, throwing arms back toward your hips, then using the power from your squat position, thrust your hips and arms forward to jump as far forward as possible, landing softly in a squat position. 2. Using that loaded squat to rebound, jump straight up in the air, again landing softly. 3. Passing through squat position, place your hands down and shoot your legs back into a plank as you would in a burpee. From plank, jump feet forward to squat position and start over. Do 8 to 10 reps.