We heard you’ve been wanting to get back in shape or start your journey to a better, healthier you. Good call—now, what’s holding you back? Even when prices for workout equipment or gym memberships are out of your budget or you don't have the space for bulky equipment at home, you can tone your body without them.
Full Body Exercises with No Gym Equipment
If you want to start burning fat and lose weight at home as fast as possible, resistance training is the way to go. Using your own body weight to provide resistance is the easiest and fastest way to turn your home into a gym.
Start slow and build up if you need to. If you're a beginner or haven't done exercise in a while, it's important not to overdo it. Remember that these types of workouts are generally high-intensity and full-body, usually finished within 30 minutes. Check out these four quick exercises:
- Burpees. A burpee is basically a push-up followed by a jump squat and a move that engages your entire body.
- Jump squats. You squat with feet shoulder-width apart, knees slightly bent, then engage your quads, glutes, and hamstrings to jump up and off the floor, extending your legs.
- Push-ups. There's a reason they're classic and recommended by everyone. They build your upper body strength and, when done right, strengthen your lower back and engage your core.
- Bicycle crunches. The key to a great bicycle crunch is taking your time to engage your abs truly. Lay on the floor, press your lower back into it and bend your knees while feet are flat on the floor. Place your hands behind your head, bring your knees up and shoulder blades off the floor, straighten your left leg while turning your upper body to the right, return to center and repeat on the other side.
Household Items You Can Use Instead of Gym Equipment
Find objects that work as weights for added resistance. You definitely have a few items in your home that can help produce the same results you would see from gym equipment. It's possible to get stronger, fitter, and leaner using everyday items like these:
- Chair: Try using a chair for tricep dips or inclined push-ups.
- Cans: Get some cans in your hands! Cans of beans, soup, or sauce—any can that fits in your hand works great as a simple hand weight.
- Backpack: Use a backpack for added weight. You can also wear it on your chest like a weighted vest.
- Jugs: Fill up a gallon jug. An excellent alternative for a dumbbell is a jug of laundry detergent, an unopened gallon of water, or a water-filled milk jug with a handle. Want to increase your resistance even more? Fill a jug with sand, rocks, or cement for even bigger gains.
Use Your Stairs for Step Exercises
Have a second-story home? How about sturdy steps into the garage, at the front door or in your backyard? Congrats, you've already got at-home workout equipment. Here are three stair exercises to try today:
- Take the stairs up and down two at a time. The extra lift that makes your step twice as high makes your muscles work harder.
- Step-ups on the stairs are easy for beginners and still work when you’re ready for a challenge. Step onto the first step with your right foot, then bring your left up to the same step. Step back with your right foot, then bring your left down next to it again. When you’re ready to take your step-up game to the next difficulty level, try going up to the second or third step (knee height) for a deeper bend.
- Single step-ups are similar but start with one side on the first step. Step up with your left foot, then bring your right foot up but do not set it on the stair; go for a controlled tap or touch, then lower the right foot back to the ground. This move can be more challenging by adding a glute squeeze and a lift or kick with the leg that is raised then lowered back to the ground.
Tips and Tricks for Exercising at Home
Make sure to practice in good form to avoid injuring yourself. Always warm-up and stretch before exercising. If you haven't worked out in a very long time or you are making significant lifestyle changes, exercises may not feel great at first, but stick with it! You got this.
- Do as many reps as you can in the proper form. Form is more important than reps when it comes to getting the most out of an exercise. If you find form difficult to maintain, take a break or stop completely to prevent injury.
- Get rid of the mindset that you will get in shape by exercising constantly or pushing beyond your limits! That's not how our bodies work. Our bodies and our minds require rest to function at their best. Push yourself just enough—until you feel tired and struggle to do another rep in the proper form. Then it's time to rest. You can get at it in good form again tomorrow.
- Consistency is key, build a routine that works for you. When you work out, you break down muscles so that they can then rebuild themselves stronger. For your muscles to rebuild, your body needs to have a rest day between workouts so your muscles can recover. After resting, get back to the exercises you enjoyed and work those muscles, baby!