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12 Days Of Christmas Workout

by Sarah Kester - December 03, 2019

Ah, Christmas. It’s the most wonderful time of the year to eat, drink and be merry. But with a New Year, New You right around the corner, it’s also the perfect time to get ahead of your fitness goals

To help you get there, we tapped the minds of several fitness professionals to create the ultimate 12 Days of Christmas Workout. They may not look like Santa Claus, but they are giving you the best present this year: your healthiest holiday season yet! 

Don’t forget to stay hydrated with Vital Proteins Collagen Water™ and get ready to sleigh all day with these workouts!

12 Days Of Christmas Workout

Your 12 Days Of Christmas Workout Challenge 

Day 1

Courtesy of Lauren Seib, CPT, Postpartum Corrective Exercise Specialist and Group Fitness Instructor

  • 20 Diamond Push-Ups
  • 20 Glute Bridge Chest Presses
  • 20 Dead Bug Chest Flys
  • 20 Weighted Froggy Glute Bridges 

Day 2

Courtesy of Melissa Welsh, NASM Certified Personal Trainer and Owner of Limitless Health and Fitness LLC

  • 20 Jump Squats
  • 15 Pike Push-Ups
  • 10/10 Side Planks with Leg Lifts (one side at a time)
  • 15 Atomic Push-Ups 
  • 60-Second Wall Sit (reaching hands above head)

Day 3

Courtesy of Luke Jones, Movement and Mobility Coach at Hero Movement

  • 10 Monkey Walks
  • 16 Bear Crawls
  • 15 Bodyweight Squats
  • 20 Dead Bugs

12 Days Of Christmas Workout

Day 4

Courtesy of Kenna Johnson, Nike Trainer and Co-founder of Sona Fitness

  • 10 Sit Ups
  • 30 Ankle Reaches
  • 10 Ninja Burpees
  • 30 Toe Taps
  • 10 Army Crawls 

Day 5

Courtesy of Alissa Tucker, AKT Master Trainer

  • 8 Plank Walks
  • 4 Spider Lunges
  • 60-Second Downward Dog Glute Extensions
  • 30-Second Mountain Climbers

Day 6

Courtesy of Eryn Topper, Certified Personal Trainer 

  • 20 Squats
  • 20 Mountain Climbers
  • 20 Walking Lunges
  • 10 Burpees

Day 7

Courtesy of Lashley Pulsipher, AFAA Certified Fitness Instructor and Balanced Body Certified Pilates Instructor

  • 10 Leg Pull-Downs
  • 20 Side-lying Runners Tap 
  • 10 Swan Dives
  • 10 Leg Pull-Ups

Day 8

Courtesy of Jennifer Nagel, Certified Personal Trainer and CEO of Figured Out Fitness LLC

  • 12 Plié Squats with Bicep Curls
  • 15 Squat Arabesques
  • 10 Penché Deadlifts
  • 20 Basic Relevés

12 Days Of Christmas Workout

Day 9

Courtesy of Jennifer Nagel, Certified Personal Trainer and CEO of Figured Out Fitness LLC

  • 10 Plank Kick-Throughs
  • 8 Bird Dogs with a Crunch
  • 8 Star Crunches
  • 10/10 Side Planks with Leg Lifts (Do One Side at a Time)

Day 10

Courtesy of Lashley Pulsipher, AFAA Certified Fitness Instructor and Balanced Body Certified Pilates Instructor

  • 10 Leaps Right and 10 Leaps Left
  • 20 Speed Skaters
  • 15 Crossover Jacks
  • 10 Burpees

Day 11

Courtesy of Kenna Johnson, Nike Trainer and Co-founder of Sona Fitness

  • 20 Squats
  • 10 Squat Jumps
  • 10 Push-Ups
  • 15 Superman Pulls

Day 12

Courtesy of Melissa Welsh, NASM Certified Personal Trainer and Owner of Limitless Health and Fitness LLC
  • 5 Inchworms 
  • 4 Frog Jumps 
  • 3 Burpees 
  • 2 Side Planks (30 seconds each)
  • 1-Minute Plank

12 Days Of Christmas Workout

Your Fitness Glossary

Diamond Push-Ups

Create a diamond shape with your hands by touching your index fingers and thumb. Align under your chest, while finding a high plank position by tucking your toes under and extending your legs. Lower your chest towards your "diamond" by softening into your elbows to the rear diagonal and keeping your abdominals engaged. Push back up to your starting position by engaging triceps, shoulders and chest.

Glute Bridge Chest Press

Set up on your back with weights in hand and your feet hip-width distance, knees bent at a 90-degree angle. Using your glutes and hamstrings, push your hips towards the ceiling and create a 90-degree angle with your arms and knuckles facing up. Extend your arms straight up while keeping your lower half in an isometric hold. 

Dead Bug Chest Fly 

Staying on your back, press your lower back waistline to the floor. Lift your legs into a 90-degree angle so your shins are parallel to the floor. Lift your arms back up like you're hugging a beach ball. As you lower the elbows, lower one foot towards the ground. Lift both back up to their starting point before repeating with the other leg.

Weighted Froggy Glute Bridges

Laying supine, create a diamond shape with your legs by bringing the soles of your feet together, knees wide. Gently place a weight on your hips. Engage your glutes to press your seat away from the floor. Hold for two seconds before releasing back down. Keep your spine long and strong!

Pike Push-Up

Get into the push-up position, palms flat on the floor and slightly more than shoulder-width apart. Walk your feet towards your hand, lifting your butt into the air. Press up through your shoulders, hold, then return to starting position.

Atomic Push-Up

With your feet on sliders, begin in the "up" position of a push-up. Descend into the bottom position of the push-up by flexing at the elbows until they reach a 90-degree position. Return to starting position. Then, pull your legs towards your chest with your knees slightly bent. During this movement, your hips will rise upward. Continue the movement until your hips are higher than your shoulders. Back to starting position. Note: You can use a towel or small pieces of cardboard to slide on.

Wall Sit 

Sit against a wall and ensure your knees don’t move forward past your toes. Try to keep your knees at 90 degrees and hold with hands above head.

Plank Kick Through

Begin in an elevated tabletop position with your hands under your shoulders and knees under your hips with your knees slightly elevated off the ground. At the same time, kick your right leg across your body and open your left arm so that your hand is stacked under your shoulder. Return to the starting position and repeat on the other side. Each kick through is one repetition. 

Bird Dog With A Crunch

Begin in a tabletop position with your hands under your shoulders and your knees under your hips. Extend your right arm forward and your left leg back, then bring your knee and elbow into your chest.

Star Crunch 

Begin on your back with your arms and legs extended out at 45-degree angle. Lift your shoulders off the ground and bring both elbows and knees into the chest and crunch your ribs to hips. Extend your arms and legs again and repeat. 

Side Plank With Leg Lift 

Begin on your side, with your elbow underneath your shoulder and your legs stacked (you can modify by bending your bottom knee). Your top arm can be on your hip or raised straight in the air above your shoulder. Squeeze your obliques and raise your hip off the ground while lifting your top leg. Lower your leg and hip and repeat. 

Monkey Walk

Enter a deep squat, lean forward and plant your hands on the ground. To move to your right, plant your left hand outside of or in line with your right foot. As you plant your right hand past your left, transfer your weight forward and to the right side.

Allow your hips to lift, shuffle your feet across and find yourself back in the deep squat, but a few feet away from your starting position. Play around with this movement, changing directions and resting whenever you need.

Bear Crawl

Start on an all fours position with hands slightly wider than shoulders width. Raise your rear to the sky, straightening both the arms and legs and entering a position similar to downward facing dog.

Press through your palms and allow your shoulder blades to protract (come forward) and elevate (raise up towards your ears). You can look forward slightly but allow your neck to relax.

From here, maintaining straight arms and legs (or allowing a slight bend), move forward by picking up the opposite side hand and foot. As you move your right hand forward, move your left foot. Alternate in this way to move forward and reverse the pattern to move back.

Dead Bugs

Begin on your back with your knees bent at 90 degrees. As you flex at the hips at 90 degrees, engage your deep core (belly button to spine) and flatten the space between your lower back and the floor. Maintain this flattened position throughout. Maintain the 90-degree bend at the knees and hips and stretch your arms straight out in front of you. Head can rest on the floor or hover an inch or so from the floor. Maintain that stable position.

Sit Up

Lie on your back with your feet planted hip-width apart. With your hands behind your head, sit up all the way to a seated position, then slowly lower back down.  

Ankle Reaches

Lie down on your back with your feet planted hip-distance apart. Crunch up so your shoulder blades are off of the ground and lateral bend as your right hand reaches for your right ankle then left hand reaches for your left ankle. 

Ninja Burpees 

From a standing position, plant your hands and step or jump back to a plank position. Spring to feet, and, while maintaining a squat position, flip your hips to the right then back to center. Place hands back on floor and jump feet back to plank position. Next time you spring to your feet, flip your hips to the left.

Toe Taps 

In a plank position, alternate tapping your feet side to side. 

Army Crawls

From a forearm plank position, keep your body in a straight line, and walk your arms and legs forward, keeping your body close to the ground.  

Leaps

Start by visualizing the most agile ballerina leaping laterally across the room. Now, try your best to do just that. Have some fun, leap as high and as wide as you can, spread your arms naturally as you leap sideways one direction and then the other. 

Squat Jumps

Stand with your feet slightly wider than your hips and feet parallel to each other. Lower your body down to a squat. Press up through your feet, engage your abdominals and jump up explosively, swinging your arms overhead. Try landing as softly as possible as you lower yourself back down to the squatting position.

Speed Skater

Stand with your legs shoulder-width apart, take a big hop to the right. As you do, sweep your left leg behind you and swing your left arm across your body. Then, step to the left, sweeping your right leg behind you and your right arm across your body. As you land, keep your back foot about an inch off the ground to work on your balance. Continue alternating sides, building up speed as you go.

Crossover Jacks 

Stand with your legs shoulder-width apart and your arms out to the sides perpendicular to your body. Jump and land with your right foot crossed in front of the left, so that one leg is in front of you and the other is behind you. At the same time, bring both of your arms in front of you and cross the right arm over the left. Jump back into the starting position with your legs and arms apart. Jump back into the crossover position, switching sides legs. 

Leg Pull-downs

Start in a high-plank position. Engage your abs and glutes to keep your body in one long line and keep the back of your neck long. Rock back into your heels, pressing them down toward the mat, then rock forward onto the balls of the feet. Then, inhale and lift your right leg off the mat and exhale as you repeat the rocking movement on your left leg. Inhale and switch legs by lifting the left leg up and exhaling as you rock back and forth on the right foot.

Side-lying Runners Tap

Lie on your right side with your right arm extended alongside your ear and your left arm in front of your chest, pressing your palm into the mat. Bend your left knee and pull your knee in line with your chest, lightly tapping the floor in front of you. Then, extend your left leg out and up behind you at an angle. Use your glutes to pull the leg back and up and feel the stretch in the front of the left hip. Your chest will rotate toward the floor when you reach your leg back. Using your abs, pull your knee up in front of your chest to tap and then reach the leg behind and up again as your torso twists.

Swan Dives

Lie on your mat, face down with your palms directly underneath your shoulders. Squeeze your legs together and press the tops of your feet into the mat behind you. First, warm up your back muscles with an inhale as you press your arms to straighten them as you lift your chest, keeping your neck long. Lower back down as you exhale, keeping your glutes engaged and legs squeezed together. At the top of the stretch with your chest lifted, release your hands and inhale as your rock forward and stretch your arms forward in line with your ears. Exhale and rock back lifting the chest and arms toward the ceiling. Keep rocking forward with an inhale and back with an exhale. Roll over onto your back and hug your knees into your chest when you’re done. 

Leg Pull-ups

Sit on your mat with your palms down by your sides. Lift your hips up off the mat as you squeeze your legs together and straighten your legs and arms, toes pointing to the mat. Inhale and lift your left leg toward the ceiling, and then flex your ankle as you exhale and draw your heel down to the mat. As your foot gets close to the mat, point your foot and lift again, inhaling up and exhaling to lower, leading with the heel.

Downward Dog Glute Extensions

Begin in downward dog. Externally rotate one leg and squeeze the glute to lift the leg. Keep both legs straight and press your supporting leg heel into the floor so you’re getting a calf stretch while you work the opposite glute. 

Plank Walk

Begin in a high plank position with shoulders over wrists and a straight line from the top of your head to your heels. Step one arm and foot out to the side, then bring the opposite arm and foot in to meet it, traveling to the side.

Spider Lunges 

Begin in a high plank position and step one leg up to a lunge, striking the floor with your heel then back to plank, alternating sides.

Squats

Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart and point your toes. Push your hips backward and squat down, bringing your upper legs parallel to the ground. Make sure to keep your back flat, chest out and your spine neutral. Push through your heels back to the starting position. Make sure not to let your knees cross your toes at the bottom of the squat.

Burpees

From a standing position, squat down and bend over to place your hands in front of you on the floor (shoulder-width apart). Stabilize your body with your arms and kick your feet back behind you, landing in a straight arm plank position. Then, tuck jump your feet back to their original placement and perform a squat jump to return to the starting position. Beginners can “step-back” instead of jumping back for a lower intensity.

Walking Lunges

Stand upright with dumbbells in each hand down your sides. Lunge forward with your left leg, landing on your heel first. Lower your body by bending at your knee and left hip, while lowering the right knee until it almost touches the floor. Continue alternating this movement from left to right, moving forward. When performing your lunges, ensure that your upper body stays over top of your back knee.

Mountain Climbers

In a straight arm plank position, place your hands on the floor slightly wider than shoulder-width apart. While stabilizing your body with your arms, push up your hips while bringing one knee straight into your chest at a time. Alternate bringing each knee in as fast as possible, while keeping the chest out and back flat. Repeat for the desired number of reps. 

Plié Squat With Bicep Curl

Begin with your legs wider than your hip and toes pointed out about 45 degrees. Make sure your core is pulled into your spine and your chest is lifted. Your arms will be at your sides holding light to moderate weight dumbbells. Lower your hips until they are nearly parallel to your knees (keep your knees aligned with your toes), as you raise your body, curl the weights to your shoulders. 

Squat Arabesque 

Begin in a standing position with your feet directly under your hips. Lower into a squat while pushing your hips back and keeping your chest lifted. As you rise, extend both arms forward and one leg back. Repeat on the other side. For more of a challenge, you can add ankle weights or small dumbbells.  

Penché Deadlift

Begin in a standing staggered position holding a light to moderate weight dumbbell in each hand. Lift your right back leg up to 45 degrees, then slowly bend at the waist and lower your body until you feel a small stretch in your standing leg hamstring. Return to the starting position and repeat on the same leg. 

Basic Relevé 

Begin in a standing position with your toes turned out slightly and your feet slightly inside of your hips and your arms overhead. Make sure your abs are pulled in toward your spine and your chest is lifted. You can hold a small to medium weight dumbbell overhead for an extra challenge. Raise and lower your heels from the ground. 

Push-Ups

From a prone position, use your arms to drop closer to the ground and push further away. 

Superman Pulls 

Lie on your stomach and reach your arms straight out in front of you. Lift your chest and legs off of the ground while engaging your glutes and back, then pull your elbows towards your hips as you squeeze your shoulder blades together and down.

Shoulder Taps

Maintain a straight line throughout your body from head to feet. Get in a plank position and squeeze your glutes and abdominals as you tap up to your shoulder with the opposite hand.

Reverse Lunge

As you step back, plant your foot and put your body weight over top of your back knee. Keep your body position tall and lower the body 90 degrees. Return to starting position. 

Inchworm 

Get into a plank position on your hands and toes, with arms straight and core engaged. With very small steps from your ankles and hips, move your lower body forward. Try to keep your tailbone tipped up to the ceiling as best you can. Once you've gone as far as you can without bending your knees, set your feet in place. Then, start walking your hands out in little steps until you've returned to a plank position.

Side Plank

Lean on your side with your elbow underneath your shoulder and your body in a straight line. Squeeze your glutes to keep your hips forward in line with your body. Once in position, hold.

Plank 

Lie face down on a mat with elbows resting on the floor next to your chest. Push your body off the floor in a push-up position with your body resting on elbows or hands. Contract the abs and keep the body in a straight line from head to toes. 

Frog Jump

Drop into a deep squat with your hands on the ground. Jump forward by pushing off the ground with your legs, fully extending through the body and hips. Land softly on all fours into the deep squat again (starting position).

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