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The 21st century is full of new trends, and one of the biggest is physical fitness. Though it can come with a pretty steep price tag. That’s why I have compiled a list of exercises that only require a good pair of tennis shoes and workout attire. You don’t need to burn a hole through your wallet in order to lose weight and slim down.
These movements are among the easiest and have been taught in P.E. for decades.
Core / Abdominal
Planks are fantastic core exercises that require little to no movement at all. Using your forearms, hold yourself up and lay them out flat, and pointing forward. Keeping your elbows under your shoulders and staying flat in the air like a push up style position.
Everyone knows how to do this. But I will explain just to cover my bases. Lie flat on your back, knees up, and feet planted. Now; put your index, middle, and ring fingers behind each ear. Lean your elbows inward at a 30 degree angle or so and come upward slightly, hold, and release back down.
By far my favorite abdominal workout. These will hurt you like no other. Luckily, that is what you’re aiming for. Imagine you are doing a sit-up. Yet, once you come up the whole way and you are now on your butt and feet only. Lift the feet off the ground keeping your knees and thighs tucked upward. With balance on your upper butt or with someone holding your feet, hold your hands with your arms out straight. twist to the left until your arms go parallel with the floor and proceed to the other side. The better you get the faster you can go, and the more weight you hold while doing it if you have them.
Much like the balanced position of the Russian Twist; you want to instead hold the index, middle, and ring fingers behind each ear like a crunch. keeping your back and legs off the floor, you will then bring your right elbow to your left knee moving each limb to one another while maintaining balanced continuing in that motion to and from each side.
You take two sturdy platforms or chairs and put one on both sides of you. Place or grab the backs firmly and bring your feet and legs upward. put your legs together and make them parallel with the ground. Keeping your body in the shape of an L.
Legs / Butt
These will shape your legs and butt like no other! Space your feet about shoulder width apart and pointing straight. Pick a point on a wall or the ceiling and focus on it as to keep your head and chin up. Keeping your back and spine straight begin your decent. Remember to keep your knees facing forward, parallel to your feet. As you go down lift your are upward in a straight and parallel motion. Once you’re all the way down, as far as you can, come back up slowly.
Keeping your back straight, shoulders back, and focusing on a spot like with the squats to keep your head and chin up. Take a semi big step forward with one leg and bend at your knees until they both reach a 90 degree angle. Remembering not to over bend, keeping your top knee over your ankle and your bottom knee off the ground. step back upward and repeat with the other leg.
Luckily everyone know how to run. We’ve been doing it since we were kids. Only now we are doing it at specific paces, distances, and for the purpose of fitness and not for playing tag. I would explain the how to portion of this exercise but if I had to, you should be seeing a specialist.
These are very popular amongst women because they work great with toning and firming your thighs and butt. Get into a downward dog pose. For those who don’t know what that is, get on your knees, bend at the wait and bring your forearms to the ground and your head with them. Bring one leg up into the are and drive your heal up into the air as far as you can. Repeat on both legs with your desired amount of reps.
Upper Body: Arms, Chest, and Back
The fundamental necessity of any work out. Push-ups work a lot of your muscles in your upper body at the same time. And the adjustment of hand and leg placement will quickly change the muscle groups being used.
Normal push-ups work just about all the muscles equally. Putting your body on the ground, put your hands just a tad past shoulder width. Put your ankles together and make a straight plank with your body, arms fully extended. Now bend at the elbows and tuck them close to your sides and go down till you’re 6 inches from the ground. Yoga blocks for guidance. And back up, then simply repeat for your desired amount of reps.
Diamond (Triangle, pyramid, triceps, etc.) push-ups focus on your triceps. Shape your hand flat, as you would slap someone, with your thumb outward. Put your hands on the ground with the tips of your pointer fingers and thumbs together. Notice its making a diamond, triangle like shape. Now follow through the same as you would your normal push-up. Harder isn’t it?
Wide push-ups focus on your chest muscles. While in position for a normal push-up, slide your hands further out past your shoulders. Adjust width to your preference, and proceed in doing your push-ups as you would normal.
One handed push-ups are the hardest of them all. It takes quite a bit of training to be able to do them. The positioning is a little different, using one hand with the other tightly clinched against the lower back. You move your feet far apart into a two point. Them slowly go down as to control the movements, and exploding back up.
Using a pull-up bar, tree branch, swing set, or go to the park. You place your hands onto the bar with your palms facing away from you. Generally around shoulder width, and proceed to pull your body upward until you get your collar bones level with the bar and back down.
You can change the hand placement to a wider grip to help build stronger wings, back, and shoulders.
The chin-up is no different than the pull up other than turning your hands inward toward yourself and bringing your chin above the bar and back down.
Same placements as a pull-up, only you will put your thumb above the bar and not around it like your gripping. You then pull yourself up and roll your chest up onto the bar and into a dip position. From there you will push your body upward like you would a dip.
Weather you use the edge of a table or two chairs on the sides of you, the movements will be relatively the same. Plant your hands on the bars beside you. Lift yourself off the ground and tuck your legs. From fully extended arms, go down by bending at the elbows. Continue by bringing your shoulders lower than your elbows. Then bring your body back up to till your arms are locked into full extension. Repeat for desired amount of reps.
So now that you know some body weight exercises, you don’t need to go and buy a whole gym/membership just to lose weight. Start with the basics and go from there until you can acquire the funds for a membership or to get yourself a nice home gym.
Thanks for reading! I hope this helps you who can’t afford to go all out on a home gym or a membership. And you have suggestions or exercises I missed, please drop a comment!