No Equipment Needed: Total Body Workout
Any room in the home can become the gym with this total body workout that uses bodyweight instead of free weights or machines.
Going to the gym is not always a choice. Work can be draining; driving can be aggravating, and sometimes scheduling will not allow it. Whether on the go or at home, a workout is minutes away. This workout uses the body’s weight and gravity to provide a challenging fitness routine that will get the blood flowing and muscles burning.
Click to View Post Navigation
No Need for Machines
Even a veteran gym rat would benefit from these exercises. They test flexibility and muscle endurance and help break past a plateau to boost weight loss and increase strength. When there is no time for the Training or a gym to be unavailable, even the most dedicated fitness nut will usually pump out a few pushups and some sit-ups. There is no need to drag through a boring set of movements when a complete routine is available to do. A broomstick or mop handle can be used to perform a few of the movements. If the workout is being done outdoors, a tree limb will suffice.
There are two ways to perform this exercise; arms behind the head or arms raised overhead. Feet should be shoulder-width apart, parallel to one another, the toes pointing forward. Position the hands either behind the head or straight up into the air. If it is difficult to remember to maintain the hands above the head, holding a broomstick or towel can help.
Supermans / Hyperextensions
This move is made in the supine position, arms straight out in front of the body with the thumbs pointing towards the ceiling. In one smooth motion, raise the thumbs and, at the same time, raise the knees off the floor toward the ceiling. It is important to not push the shoulders forward during this movement and to keep the legs straight. Hold each pose at the top for one to two seconds. To increase difficulty, hold a towel or broomstick with both hands.
To begin getting into the starting position, assume the pushup position. Spread the feet a minimum of two feet apart, move both hands forward four inches, and raise the buttocks into the air. To perform a shoulder pushup, bend the arms and move the body forward until the head is touching the ground directly in between the hands. The important thing to remember in this motion is to go forward, not straight downward.
It is a progression of the shoulder pushups. Begin in the shoulder pushup position. Perform the shoulder pushup as directed. Instead of pushing back toward the starting position, keep moving forward, dipping the head and body forward, then arching upward toward the ceiling until the hands are positioned under the body. To turn to the origin position, reverse the movement. It is a hard motion to control. Keep the movement as smooth as possible.
Push–Ups / Uneven Surface Push-Up
It is a very basic move, but it is often performed improperly. Begin in the standard pushup position. Next, bend the arms, lowering the body down toward the floor. Keep the body straight during the entire movement; do not arch the back or let the head fall forward. For an increased challenge, place the hands-on on uneven surfaces. A pillow or book can be used to create an uneven surface.
Begin in the pre-push-up position, with the hands and knees on the floor. For the first position, assume the typical pushup position. In the second position, roll to the left side, holding the body up with the left arm; raise the right arm straight up toward the ceiling. In the third position, roll to the right side, hold the body up with the right arm, and raise the left arm towards the ceiling. The next three positions will be the same as the first three, the only difference being they will be performed on the elbows instead of the hands. Hold each pose for 10 – 15 seconds.
How to do a Machine-Free Routine
This routine can be done in sequence, or it can be done in a circuit fashion. If done sequentially, three sets of 12 to 15 repetitions should be done per exercise. Be sure to rest at least 30 seconds in between sets. To do the routine in a circuit, each exercise should be repeated 15 times with no rest between exercises. That would mean 15 squats, then 15 inverted rows, then 15 dive-bombers, and so on. Completing all six exercises is one cycle. Three to four cycles need to be completed with a one-minute minimum and two-minute maximum of rest in between.
Proper form is essential. Working smarter, not harder, should be the goal. Proper form decreases the chance an injury will occur and provides the opportunity for quality training. Remember to be safe in any workout setting. If lightheadedness or dizziness occurs, stop exercising and be sure to have plenty of water available to stay hydrated.