You don’t need to join a gym to lose weight and get fit. There are hundreds of body weight exercises that you can do in your home with no equipment required. Below are seven of the most effective body weight exercises which are also easy to learn. Aim for three sets of 10 repetitions (reps) of each exercise and rest for 30-90 seconds between each set.
Try and repeat 3-4 times a week with a day off between each exercise day. It’s important to warm up first to get your body ready for exercising and cool down and stretch at the end. Also speak with your doctor first if you are new to or returning to exercise after a break. So here goes:
- Stair Climb – Walk up and down the stairs 10 times, rest and then repeat for two more sets. You can make the exercise more challenging by carrying something such as a small bag/box of books.
- Stand Up Out of Chair – Without using your hands slowly sit down onto a chair. To stand up, make sure your heels are directly under your knees, lean forward slightly and stand. Repeat for 10 times and rest between each set. To make the exercise harder, hold onto a small box/bag of books to add some resistance or try the exercise using the sofa which can be more challenging than a chair to sit up out of.
- Get Up, Get Down – Lie down on the floor on your back and use your hands and elbows to get up to a standing position. Once standing, get back down to the lying position and repeat for 10. To make the exercise more challenging try and only use one hand to help get you up off the floor. Keep progressing until you eventually don’t need to use your hands or elbows to get up off the floor.
- Bear Crawl – Release the inner grizzly by getting down onto your hands and knees, tighten your stomach muscles (engage your core) lift your knees off the floor and crawl on your hands and toes from one side of the room over to the other. To make the exercise harder pause for a count of 2-3 each time you lift your foot off the ground before you move it forward.
- Wall Squat – Stand with your back to a wall and slowly slide your back down the wall until your thighs are parallel with the ground. Make sure your knees are directly above your ankles and you keep your back straight. Try and hold for 30 seconds and then stand up out of the squat position. To make the exercise harder, you can hold a bag/box of books in your hands and well as increase the time spent in the squat position.
- Plank – Lie face down on your forearms on the floor and interlock your fingers. Tighten your stomach muscles (core), extend your legs and push up on your toes, keep your core tight and try and hold the position for as long as you can.
- Box Press Up – Kneel down and place your hands on the floor in front of you directly underneath your shoulders with your fingers pointing forwards. Bend your arms at your elbows and lower your chest down towards the floor and then press back up again through your hands. To make the exercise harder move your knees back, or try with one knee off the ground but ensure you keep your core engaged.
You don’t have to do all of the above exercises in one go. You can spread them throughout the day. Keep score of your progress and maybe recruit family and friends to do them as well, so you can compare results and support each other.