Back to Basics

Using Your Own Body Weight

 

This modality uses just your bodyweight to get you sweating.  Your body itself is truly a great resistance training tool.  Think push-ups, planks.  “No equipment” workouts are extremely convenient – great anytime, anywhere.

Here are some exercises that allow you to perform the daily activities of life with optimum ease.  Everyone needs to do them in order to perform at our best including beginners, seniors and even experienced athletes. These are COMPOUND EXERCISES that work most of the major muscle groups in the body and you can do them ANYWHERE.

 

For beginners, seniors, experienced athletes

Works major muscle groups

Do them anywhere

SQUATS

A Great Exercise for the Whole Body

The most obvious benefit of squats is building your leg muscles – quadriceps, hamstrings and calves. These drills also create an anabolic environment, which promotes body-wide muscle building, improving muscle mass.

  • Start with your feet hip distance apart
  • Keeping your knees over your ankles, bend your knees, moving your butt back as if to sit in a chair
  • Your knees and lower leg should form a 90 degree angle (if you can’t get to 90 degrees without compromising your form, that’s okay)
  • Make sure your knees do NOT go over your toes
  • Raise up and do it again
  • Try doing 10 reps, three sets, two to three times a week

LUNGES

For Shapely, Toned Legs and Backside

Lunges are a quintessential exercise that you can do just about anywhere and the effects can be seen in no time.  However, it’s important to do lunges properly so you don’t put unwanted strain on your joints.

  • The working leg should be forward. Place the back leg hip distance apart in a split stance.  The heel of the back leg should be up.
  • Bend your knees, keeping the front knee over your ankles.  The end point is when both the front leg and the back leg make a 90 degree angle.
  • Rise up and then do it again
  • Try doing 10 reps, three sets, two to three times a week

PUSH-UPS

Build Upper Body Strength + Lower Back and Core

Traditional pushups are beneficial for working the triceps, pectoral muscles and shoulders.  When done with proper form, they can also strengthen the lower back and core by engaging the abdominal muscles.

  • Start in a plank position,  hands slightly wider than your shoulders and your palms on the floor.
  • Keep your back straight, don’t let your lower back sag.  Keep your head and neck in alignment with your back.
  • Slowly bend your elbows, bringing your chest towards the floor.
  • Push against the floor and straighten your arms, returning to the starting position.
  • Try doing 10 reps, three sets, two to three times a week
  • Modifications:  You can perform this exercise on your knees or  place your hands on a bench.

PULL-UPS

Works Your Back and Biceps

You probably already know that the pull-up is about the toughest body weight exercise there is.  It’s the lats, traps and rhomboids that bear the brunt of the effort, while you can challenge different parts of your arms by changing your grip.  This move strengthens your core and is one of the quickest and easiest ways to leave your entire upper body quivering with fatigue.

First, let’s make sure we understand the difference between pull-ups and chin-ups.  Pull-ups refer to a pronated or overhand grip.  Chin-ups refers to using a supinated or underhand grip.  For this exercise combo, we’re using PULL-UPS.

  • Stand under the bar, palms on the bar and hands slightly wider than your shoulders.
  • Pull yourself up so that your chin reaches the bar.  Keep  your posture straight..
  • Slowly lower yourself down so that your arms are straight and your feet do not touch the floor or bench.
  • Try doing five reps, two sets, two to three times a week.  Increase slowly.
  • Modifications:
    • Machine assisted – Most gyms have assisted pull up machines.  This is the one machine where the more weight you use, the easier it gets.
    • Lateral pull-up – Most playgrounds have a bar that is close to the ground (monkey bars).  The position of your body will be the exact opposite of a push-up.  To make it easier, you can bend your knees.

 

It’s Never Too Late

It’s never too late to start incorporating exercise into your daily routine.  You can start slowly and find ways to fit more physical activity into your life.  To get the most benefit, you should try to get the recommended amount of exercise for your age.  If you can do it, the payoff is that you will likely feel better, have more energy and sleep better.  It’s never too late to begin your fitness routine!

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