- Published on Thursday, 01 March 2012 18:41
Not having access to a gym or home gym equipment is not a reason why one cannot improve his or her health and fitness. Whether you’re traveling and don’t have access to one or whether you’re too busy or wish to avoid gym membership fees, you can still be fit and healthy right at home (or away from home). With just a little space and with the help of several common items, you can work out your cardiovascular system and tone and strengthen your muscles, helping you achieve a healthier body without the need for huge gym equipment.
Start With Aerobics
-Choose an aerobic activity you can do outdoors: You can walk, run, hike, bike, and play sports such as soccer or tennis. You can also try swimming. Over the weeks you can vary your aerobic activity per week. If you cannot leave your home you can also check out exercise videos. There are step aerobics, kick boxing or dance videos that you can choose from.
- Some housework may also be considered as a form of aerobics. Get moving when you mow the lawn, shovel snow from your driveway, carry things up the stairs and the like.
- You can also try jumping rope - this is a very simple and inexpensive way to get your heart pumping without having to leave the house. It has also been shown to be one of the best ways to burn calories.
Exercises for the Upper Body
-Do push–ups. You can do wall pushups if you’re a beginner, and you can do real push-ups if you’re really fit. Pushups can be done almost anywhere, whether inside or outside the house. For those who need a bigger challenge, try three-legged push-ups and alternate leg placements. You can also try decline and incline push-ups.
-Tricep dips strengthen and tone your triceps, which are good if they are flabby and jiggly. Do tricep dips by taking a bench or a chair. Position your hands on the chair. They should be shoulder width apart. Move your rear end off the chair and bend your knees. Bend your elbows and lower your body, keeping your arms at a 90 degree angle. Before reaching the bottom, push yourself straight back and return to the starting position. Do at least eight repetitions and three sets each. Rest for sixty seconds in between set intervals.
-Do Bicep curls by using makeshift weights. You can make use of soup cans, water filled bottles or even grocery bags (with groceries still inside.) Try eight counts and three sets on interval.
-Use the makeshift weights to do lateral raises by holding the weights on each side. Raise both arms to the side until it reaches your shoulder’s height. Slowly lower the weights.
-Do crunches. For your abdominal muscles, lie on your back and the bend your knees. Raise your upper body and reach for the knees. Hold for two seconds and then return to the floor. Try three sets of crunches.
Exercises for the Lower Body
-Strengthen your glutes, hamstrings and quads by doing squats. Do squats by standing in front of a chair or a bench. Position your feet shoulder – width apart, and then bend your knees slowly as if you’re trying to sit on the chair. Stop until your legs are parallel with the chair’s seat and just before your rear end falls into the seat. Slowly rise back to the standing position. Do eight repetitions and three sets.
-Plie squats are a variation to the traditional squats, and can be done by putting your feet apart. Point the toes outward to a forty – five degree angle. Slowly bend your knees towards the direction of your toes. Stop until your knees cover the view of your toes. Slowly return back to standing position and squeeze your inner thighs when doing so.
-To tone your buns, do gluteal squeezes by squeezing your rear end muscles. Hold the squeeze and relax. Do eight repetitions and three sets of each.
-These are just a few exercises that you can do outside of the gym. So whether you can’t go to the gym, or you simply just don’t want to – there’s no excuse for you not to stay fit and healthy.
While we recommend having access to a gym when possible, these exercises can help you in a pinch to maintain your physique. Always seize the opportunity to stay active and be healthy!