Someone joked on social media lately that it feels like they gained the “Quarantine 15” pounds. With the coronavirus causing us to be stuck at home without the use of a gym, many people are stopping their exercise routines altogether. However, there’s plenty of ways to stay fit inside your own home without the luxury of exercise equipment. Below, I’d like to share 5 simple at home exercises you can do anytime.
Why are these below exercises simple? Because they require no equipment and you can modify the exercises to work for you. If you have a home, then you have a home gym. I won’t give you a specific rep or set goal amount, because that depends on a variety of factors, but it’s important to master these easy-to-use bodyweight exercises and do what feels comfortable. I encourage you, however, to make sure you are doing the proper form and challenging yourself each time. The old adage “no sweat, no gain” is really quite true. Now, let’s begin…
A great way to get started and an all-around exercise that works your back, hips, and shoulders. Your starting position should be lying prone on your stomach face down with your arms and legs extended. To begin, exhale and contract your core muscles in order to stabilize your spine and lift both legs and arms slowly off the floor. Hold this position briefly and then gently inhale and relax your legs, arms, and back. Then repeat. I encourage you to avoid any awkwardness you may feel like I did the first time as this exercise is also a great stretch.
For a video demonstration, click here.
An abdominal crunch is designed to tone the core muscles of your body. Plus, it also improves your posture and muscle flexibility. The basic crunch is done by lying flat on your back with knees bent and your hands behind your back. Then rise up to meet your pelvis using your shoulders and your core to maintain and propel you forward.
While one of the simplest exercises to do, crunches can also cause injury when done improperly. Don’t be a workout casualty and pull yourself forward using the strength of your hands on your neck or head. (Sadly, this was my technique for many years.) To watch a proper crunch technique, I encourage you to click here.
Many people love (and hate) doing planks. I tend to enjoy doing planks as it’s a great isometric exercise with many different variations. For a standard plank, plant your hands directly under your shoulders like you’re about to do a push-up. Now ground your toes into the floor and look at a spot on the floor about a foot behind your hands. (Be careful not to hyperextend or lock your knees.) I try to hold that position for 20 seconds, but do what feels comfortable for you. As you get more familiar with this exercise, try going longer without compromising your breath and form. Please keep in mind that there are many variations to the plank. To make sure you’re doing it right (along with a few variations), I recommend watching this video.
Push-Up or Bent Knee Push-Up
Because it’s difficult, I often have skipped doing push-ups in the past. However, I’ve stopped depriving myself of this excellent upper body workout after learning how many health benefits are included with this simple at home exercise.
When done correctly, push-ups work the triceps, pectoral muscles, and shoulders. Plus, push-ups strengthen your lower back and core that helps with posture and prevents lower back injuries. If you struggle with the difficult form, an excellent starting option is the bent knee push-up for beginners. To prevent injury, I urge you to check out this video and learn the proper push-up form.
A simple and effective exercise with numerous variations. However, if it’s your first time to practice lunges (or it’s just been a while) it’s good to begin with mastering the basic stationary lunge. Start with one leg forward and one leg back. Next, drop your body down and keep your back knee over the ankle. Then repeat. If your living room is big enough, you can also add a forward or backward lunge for variation. To watch the proper technique, click here.
I hope these at home exercises have helped you! Is there a workout that you love that I didn’t mention? I’d love to hear your thoughts at email@example.com. Also, if you’re looking for some at home exercises that are leg specific, I have a great post that you can check out here. Also, be sure to subscribe to my weekly newsletter to receive more great health and wellness tips straight to your inbox each Friday.