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30-Minute Thrusters Workout (MetCon, Day 1)

Build total body and core strength with this dumbbell thrusters workout. The nine compound exercises in this workout target the upper body, lower body and core. You’re challenged to complete 100 squat thrusters in this effective full body workout at home.



 

This is DAY ONE of our MetCon 100 Program.

Woman performing a lunge hold and rotate with a dumbbell in a cardio and core workout

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Challenge your total body strength and endurance with this thrusters workout.

Day one of our 2-Week MetCon 100 Program challenges you to complete 100 squat thrusters.

The squat thruster is a compound exercise that combines the front squat and the overhead press. This exercise challenges your balance, coordination, flexibility, strength and endurance.

Pick up heavy weights that you can sustain throughout the workout, but will challenge your muscular endurance. You’ll complete five sets of 20 squat thrusters throughout the workout for a total of 100 dumbbell thrusters.

two women performing an overhead press with dumbbells in a full body workout

Thrusters Workout FAQs

What Is A Thrusters Exercise?

A dumbbell thruster exercise recruits your total body to move a load of weight from the ground to as far away from the ground as possible. There are different variations of thrusters exercises, such as squat thrusters and hip thrusters. This workout challenges you to complete 100 squat thrusters, which is a combination of two lifts. The squat thruster combines the front squat and the overhead push press to challenge your balance, coordination, flexibility, strength and endurance.

What Muscles Does A Squat Thruster Work?

A squat thruster is a total body compound exercise that engages the lower body (quads, glutes, hamstrings, hips), upper body (shoulders), and core. The dumbbell thruster requires total body strength and power; improving coordination, muscular endurance, and balance. Pushing heavy weights overhead challenges your cardiovascular endurance, making this an effective strength and HIIT exercise.

Are Dumbbell Thrusters Effective?

Yes – dumbbell squat thrusters are an effective total body exercise often found in crossfit workouts. Not only do they challenge your total body strength and raise your heart rate, they also require hip and ankle mobility, thoracic spine mobility, and shoulder mobility. It’s important to complete this exercise with good form to avoid injury.

two women holding a low squat with dumbbells front racked in a thrusters workout

30-Minute Thrusters Workout (MetCon, Day 1)

Build total body strength at home using just a set of dumbbells in this thrusters workout.

This metabolic conditioning workout challenges you to complete 100 dumbbell thrusters. We’ll target all the major muscle groups in the upper body and lower body during this full body and abs workout.

I suggest doing this thrusters workout once a week as part of a well-rounded workout routine.

Workout Equipment:

A medium-to-heavy set of dumbbells. I suggest anywhere from 8-25 lbs. We’re using 15-20 lb dumbbells in this workout.

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woman holding a single dumbbell racked at her shoulder in a full body squat thruster workout

Workout Instructions:

Follow along with the guided Dumbbell Thrusters Workout on YouTube, led by certified personal trainer and fitness instructor, Lindsey Bomgren. 

Your Workout Looks Like This:

  • 4 Circuits (2 exercises per circuit)
  • Timed Intervals (30 seconds work, 15 seconds rest. Complete as many reps as you can in the timed interval.)
  • Repeat Each Circuit x2 Sets
  • Perform 20 Squat Thrusters Between Circuits For a Total of 100 Squat Thrusters

Workout Outline

CIRCUIT ONE:
1. Deadlift and Clean
2. Plank and Row and Dumbbell Sprawl

CIRCUIT TWO: 
1. Dumbbell Snatch and Two Overhead Marches
2. Lateral Bear Crawl and Dumbbell Drag

CIRCUIT THREE:
1. Walking Lunges
2. Lateral Squat and Bicep Curl

CIRCUIT FOUR:
1. Hollow Rock and Single Arm Chest Press
2. Single Leg Glute Bridge and Calf Raise with Overhead Pull

two women holding the bottom of a squat preparing to perform a dumbbell snatch in a total body workout

Prefer to Watch On YouTube?

youtube icon Thrusters Workout

9 Full Body Exercises with Dumbbells

Dumbbell Squat Thruster

Targets: Legs, glutes, hamstrings, quads, hips, shoulders, abs and core.

two women performing dumbbell squat thrusters as part of a dumbbell thrusters workout

How To Do A Dumbbell Squat Thruster

  1. Start standing, feet shoulder-width apart, knees slightly bent. Hold one dumbbell in each hand. Dumbbells rests on your shoulders, in a front-racked position, overhand grip, palms facing in.
  2. With your weight in your heels, sit your hips back as you lower into a squat, striving for a 90-degree angle between your hips and knees.
  3. Then, drive through your heels, squeezing your glutes to stand tall. As you stand, perform an overhead thruster, pressing the dumbbells straight overhead. Your biceps should be near your ears.
  4. Bring the weights back down to shoulder height and repeat.

Modification: The scaling option is to perform alternating single arm thrusters, pressing one weight overhead at a time.

Deadlift and Clean

Targets: The posterior chain or backside of the body. Specifically targeting the hamstrings, glutes, hips, lower back and core.

two women performing a dumbbell deadlift and clean as part of a total body workout

How To Do A Deadlift and Clean

  1. Start standing feet shoulder-width apart and knees slightly bent. Hold one dumbbell in each hand at your hips (palms facing in towards your body).
  2. Hinge forward at the hips, pushing your hips back as you lower the dumbbells down along the front of your body. You should feel a stretch in the back of your legs (hamstrings). Focus on keeping your back in neutral alignment with your neck and shoulders throughout the entire movement (straight line from head to tailbone). Keep a slight bend in your knees to avoid ‘locking out’ the joint.
  3. Then, drive through your heels, squeezing your glutes as you drive your hips forward to return to standing.
  4. As you stand tall, clean the dumbbells up to a front racked position, using the power in your legs to bring them up to shoulder height.
  5. Lower the dumbbells back to the hips to return to the starting position.

Plank and Row and Dumbbell Sprawl

Targets: Quads, glutes, hamstrings, back (specifically the lats and rhomboids), chest, biceps, triceps, shoulders and core.

one woman performing a plank and row with a dumbbell burpee sprawl and one woman performing a row and clean as part of a full body workout

How To Do A Plank and Row and Sprawl

  1. Start in a high plank position with your hands directly under your shoulders and feet shoulder-width apart.
  2. Hold a dumbbell in each hand, with your palms facing each other and your arms extended. Your wrists should be in line with your shoulders.
  3. Engage your core and keep your back straight as you row one dumbbell up towards your chest, keeping your elbow close to your body. Try to keep your hips and shoulders parallel to the floor.
  4. Lower the dumbbell back down to the starting position, then repeat the movement with the other arm.
  5. Then, step or jump your feet up to meet your hands, landing in a low squat position.
  6. Press through your heels to stand tall, pulling the dumbbells up your body as your hips drive forward.
  7. Lower the dumbbells as you bend your knees to lower into a squat. Plant the dumbbells on the mat between your feet at the bottom of your squat, and step or hop your feet back, landing in high plank position.

Modification: Option to omit the plank and burpee sprawl, performing an alternating single arm row and dumbbell clean from a standing position.

Dumbbell Snatch and Overhead March

Targets: Legs, hamstrings, hips, glutes, back, shoulders and deep transverse abdomen muscles (core).

two women performing a dumbbell snatch and overhead march as part of a thrusters workout

How To Do A Dumbbell Snatch and Overhead March

  1. Start standing at the back of your space, feet shoulder-width apart, knees slightly bent. Hold one dumbbell in your right hand at your side (palm facing in).
  2. Hinge forward at the hips, pushing your hips back as you lower the dumbbell down the front of your body. You should feel a stretch in the back of your legs (hamstrings).
  3. Then, drive your hips forward as you ‘snatch’ the weight overhead with your right arm (using the power and momentum created by your legs and hips). You should finish standing tall with your right arm straight overhead; lock out your elbow.
  4. While holding the dumbbell overhead, perform two knee drives as you move forward, first lifting your right knee so that your right thigh is parallel to the ground, then repeating with the left knee.
  5. Then plant both feet on the ground (parallel) and with control, slowly lower the dumbbell back down to shoulder height.
  6. Repeat the snatch and overhead march, this time stepping back as you march to return to where you started.

Modification: Omit the overhead push, cleaning the dumbbell to shoulder height. You may also omit the forward and backward movement, performing marches in place.

Lateral Bear Crawl and Dumbbell Drag

Targets: Quads, shoulders, biceps and core.

one woman performing a lateral bear crawl and dumbbell drag and one woman performing a dumbbell press and rotate as part of a total body workout

How To Do A Lateral Bear Crawl and Dumbbell Drag

  1. Start in a table top position or quadruped on all fours — shoulders stacked over wrists and hips stacked over knees. Place one dumbbell just behind your hands.
  2. Tuck your toes under to lift your knees off the mat, finding a bear crawl position. Abs engaged, knees close to the mat, creating a straight line from head to tailbone.
  3. Place your left hand on the dumbbell and drag it laterally, moving it towards the left and away from your body.
  4. Then walk laterally to the left by stepping your left hand and left foot out, right hand and right foot to follow. Maintain the bear crawl hold. You should now be right over the dumbbell that you moved.
  5. Place your right hand on the dumbbell and drag it laterally, moving across your body and towards the right, returning it to the starting position.
  6. Then maintain the bear crawl hold as you walk laterally to the right.

Modification: Hold a dumbbell straight out in front of you at shoulder height. Take two lateral steps to the left and rotate the torso to the left. Come back to center, then reverse the movement by stepping laterally to the right.

Walking Lunges

Targets: Legs, quads, glutes, hamstrings, inner thighs and core.

two women performing walking lunges in a total body and core workout

How To Do Walking Lunges

  1. Start by standing at the back of your space, feet hip-distance apart. Hold a dumbbell in each hand, palms facing in towards each other (hammer curl grip).
  2. Step your right leg forward into a front lunge, dropping your back left knee down towards the ground as you lower your hips until both knees reach a 90-degree angle, front thigh is parallel to the floor.
  3. Drive through the front right heel to stand tall and rather than stopping at the top, immediately step your left leg into a front lunge. Drop your back right knee down towards the ground as you lower your hips until both knees reach a 90-degree angle, front thigh parallel to the floor.
  4. Repeat alternating front lunges as you move forward in a walking motion.

Modification: Stay in place, performing alternating reverse lunges instead of walking lunges.

Lateral Squat and Bicep Curl

Targets: Gluteus medius (outer glute that controls hip movement and side-to-side movements), quads, inner thighs (or hip adductors), hamstrings, calves and biceps.

two women performing a lateral squat and bicep curl as part of a full body workout at home

How To Do A Lateral Squat and Bicep Curl

  1. Start with your feet wider than your hips (think a wide squat stance), with your knees and toes pointing forward. Or toes just slightly turned out away from your body.
  2. Hold one dumbbell horizontally at your hips, dumbbell falls between your legs.
  3. Shift your weight into your right heel as you push your hips back, bending your right knee while leaving your left leg straight. Think of performing a single leg squat with your right leg while your left leg remains straight.
  4. Hold at the bottom of the squat as you curl the dumbbell up to shoulder height.
  5. Lower the dumbbell back down, then drive through your right foot to reverse the movement, pushing you back up to center.

Hollow Rock and Single Arm Chest Press

Targets: Upper abs, lower abs, obliques, transverse abdomen, hip flexors, chest (pectorals), shoulders (deltoids) and triceps.

two women performing a hollow rock hold and single arm chest press in a full body workout

How To Do A Hollow Rock and Single Arm Chest Press

  1. Lie on your back, knees bent at 90 degrees and stacked over hips. Hold a dumbbell in your left hand (palm facing knees), elbow bent at a 90-degree angle.
  2. Inhale to brace your core, pressing your lower back into the mat, core tight. Then straighten your legs, kicking your heels out away from your body. The lower your heels, the more difficult this exercise will be.
  3. Lift your head and shoulders slightly off the mat, finding a hollow rock hold position.
  4. Hold this hollow rock position, then exhale as you push the dumbbell in the left hand overhead; dumbbell stacked over your left shoulder at the top of the press. Make sure your wrist is strong and in line with your shoulder.
  5. Lower the dumbbell back towards your chest with control.

Modification: Keep knees bent at 90 degrees rather than extending into a hollow rock hold.

Single Leg Glute Bridge and Calf Raise with Overhead Pull

Targets: Glutes, hamstrings, hips, core, pelvic floor, calves, lats (latissimus dorsi) and pecs (pectoralis major and pectoralis minor). 

two women performing a single leg glute bridge with a calf raise and overhead dumbbell pull in a total body workout

How To Do A Single Leg Glute Bridge and Calf Raise with Overhead Pull

  1. Start laying on your back, feet hip-width apart, left foot planted on the floor and right foot extended straight overhead (ankle stacked over knee). Hold one dumbbell in your hands horizontally, palms facing in, arms extended straight overhead.
  2. Press through your left heel to lift your glutes off the mat, squeezing your glutes as you lift. Think about keeping your core engaged and knees in line with your hips.
  3. Maintain this single leg glute bridge hold as you perform a dumbbell pullover. With control, lower the dumbbell overhead towards the ground, arms straight. Hold for a three-count.
  4. Then perform a calf raise by lifting the left heel off the ground, rising onto the left toes.
  5. Hold the calf raise as you pull the dumbbell back overhead, engaging the lats (back muscles), to return back to the starting position. Hold the calf raise and dumbbell overhead for a three-count.

Modification: Option to keep both heels flat on the floor, or perform a “B-Stance” Glute Bridge. Plant your left heel and step your right heel out slightly further away from your body, finding a staggered stance. Keep most of your weight in your left heel, right toes popped off the ground.

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MetCon 100: FREE Metabolic Conditioning Program

A 2-week metabolic conditioning program designed to show you that you’re stronger than you think. 

If you liked this full body and abs workout at home, download the FREE, 2-Week Workout Plan.

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woman performing a squat thruster as part of metcon 100 workout program

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2 comments
  1. Hello 2024!!! What an awesome way to start the new year! Super sweaty but feeling pumped! Wasn’t sure I’d get through all the thrusters! Breaking it down like that definitely helps make it possible.
    Happy New Year!