Let’s face it. Getting to the gym this time of year is hard. Kids are out of school, family vacations, business travel, etc. Besides, when it’s 80 and sunny, the gym may not seem as appealing as it did a few short months ago. For whatever reason many of us face the same challenge getting a regular workout in whether it’s a lack of time, limited resources, or simple gym boredom. Rather than viewing it as a challenge think of it as a good reason to get creative and try something new. Not only is it good for us physically to mix things up, but it’s mentally refreshing as well. Plus there are still plenty of ways to get in a solid workout that is fast, convenient, and only requires one piece of equipment…you! Training with minimal or no equipment is often referred to bodyweight training. Bodyweight training comes with many physical benefits, including increases in strength, range of motion, cardiovascular endurance. And best of all, many bodyweight exercises can be performed free of pain for most exercisers.
Outlined below are five exercises that can be either implemented into your current workout routine or as a workout you can take with you anywhere!
Inverted Row: Use a solid, stable bar like a guard rail or a monkey bar. The bar should be anywhere between waist to chest height. Grab the bar with your palms facing down and with your arms fully extended at chest level. Your body should be angled at approximately 0° to 60° depending on your level of strength. Maintaining alignment and control, contract your abs and pull your chest towards the bar keeping your body straight throughout the movement. Slowly lower yourself back to the starting position and repeat for 10 to 15 repetitions.
Jack Squats: Begin in a squat position with your hands at your sides. Hop into a standing position with your feet out wide while simultaneously singing your arms overhead. Hop back into the squat position and repeat the movement for 10-15 repetitions.
Floor Bridge: Lie on your back and position your feet flat on the ground with your knees bent at 90°. Contract your abs and slowly lift your hips off of the ground until you are fully extended. Pause for 2 seconds and slowly lower yourself back to the ground. Repeat this move for 10 to 15 repetitions. Continue the movement for 30 seconds.
Stationary Spiderman: Begin in a pushup position with a narrow grip. Bring your left leg forward placing your foot flat and to the outside of your hands. Extend your left leg back into the starting position. Repeat the same movement with your right leg and continue the movement by alternating legs. Perform 10-15 reps per side.
Mountain Climbers: Begin in a pushup position keeping your body straight. Step your left leg in towards your hands keeping the hip, knee, and foot in a straight line. Simultaneously, extend your left leg back to the starting position while stepping your right leg towards your hands and continue to alternate the movement with your legs similar to a running motion. Keep your body straight throughout the entire set, performing the exercise as quickly as possible while maintaining form.
Jason Wanlass, the owner of Champion Fitness Training in Meridian, has more than 17 years experience in the fitness industry. Contact him at email@example.com or www.championfit.net.