There are days when you might not be able to hit the gym. Maybe you’re working on a big project. Or perhaps something unexpected came up. However, this doesn’t mean you should miss your workouts. With a little creativity, you can get a full body workout at home. Single leg squats, bear crawls, plyometric push-ups, planks, and other exercises require no equipment. All you need is discipline and motivation.
Depending on your fitness level, you can try basic moves, such as the squat and lunge, or more complex exercises like the archer pull-up, diamond push-up, and plyo jumps. For a more challenging workout, use resistance bands, water bottles, or ankle weights. A set of dumbbells costs only a few dollars, so get one for yourself! Focus on multi-joint movements to hit all major muscle groups. To slim down, include bodyweight cardio exercises in your routine. Vertical jumps, skaters, wide mountain climbers, jumping lunges, and flutter kicks are a great choice. Complete three to four sets per exercise – just like you do in the gym.
Here are five at-home exercises you can try right now:
This classic bodyweight exercise targets nearly every muscle. In the long run, it increases strength and durance, shapes your core, and improves your balance. The push-up trains your proprioceptive muscle fibers and builds muscle density, which helps maintain your fitness later in life. As your strength increases, try new variations, such as single arm push-ups, knuckle push-ups, alligator push-ups, and pike push-ups.
When it comes to building lower body strength, no exercise can beat the squat. This compound move hits your quads, hamstrings, glutes, quads, core, and back muscles while improving functional fitness. It also raises your testosterone and growth hormone levels, which helps build muscle size and strength. Its metabolism-boosting effects are a welcomed bonus. Experiment with different squat variations, such as the sumo squat, the goblet squat, the Zercher squat, and the Bulgarian split squat.
Some say that burpees are the best cardio exercise. This complex move helps develop core strength, improves your balance and stability, increases reaction time, and shapes your legs. Even short bouts of burpees can boost your metabolism and cardiovascular fitness. If you want to get your heart pounding, it’s enough to do 10 burpees in a row.
The Glute Bridge
The glutes play a key in hip flexibility and movement. They’re actually the largest muscle group in your body. Prolonged sitting and lack of exercise can result in weak glute muscles and affect your overall fitness. The bridge is one of the few exercises that directly target your glutes. This simple move strengthens your lower body, eases back pain, and improves your posture. If you do it right, you should feel your glutes and hamstrings burning after a few reps. Bridge pulses, glute bridge and curls, inverted bridges, and the single leg glute bridge will add variety to your routine and hit your glutes from different angles.
Another exercise you can try at home is the mountain climber. When performed regularly, it improves your balance, speed, agility, coordination, and proprioception. This calisthenic move can be used for cardio and strength training, leading to improved overall fitness. The main muscles targeted are the abs, glutes, hip flexors, quads, and hamstrings. Your back and should muscles will get an intense workout too!
In addition to the exercises listed above, you can try butt kicks, tuck jumps, scissor kicks, Russian twists, and lunges. The possibilities are endless. Before getting started, decide what muscles you want train. Do a quick search online for the best body weight moves targeting those muscles, choose at least three, and get to work! These exercises are perfect for HIIT, full body circuits, interval training, and even strength training.