Let’s be honest; we live in a world that’s not so fitness friendly. With 9-5 jobs (or worse), commitments outside of work and maintaining our household lives, planning a trip to the gym is a struggle; never mind getting there daily. But, there’s a way to get in and stay in shape without a gym membership- or even exercise equipment! Body weight exercises can be done literally anywhere, and stringing five or six together makes for a perfect 12 minute circuit. Check out these 12 great body weight exercises!
Disclaimer: We here at Yougoz are fitness enthusiasts, not professionals. Always check with a doctor or professional trainer before engaging in strenuous activities, and make sure this is right for you. If you ever feel sharp pain or strain, talk to a doctor and stay away from WebMD!
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Engages: Glutes, Legs, Core, Cardio
Jump squats are as simple as they come. Find a space, squat down with your arms by your sides, then spring up with your arms extended. In addition to helping tone your glutes and giving your legs a good workout, jump squats require endurance and will push you aerobically as well.
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Engages: Glutes, Legs
One foot in front of the other, as simple as that. When you kneel down each rep, try to get your legs as close to the ground without touching it for the optimal workout. Go up and down your hallways, or down the sidewalk if you don’t mind getting fit in public.
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Engages: Triceps, Front Shoulders, Chest
Have a chair? Perfect, that’s all you need to get toned triceps. This is one of the more serious body weight exercises, but it also delivers some of the most serious results. Just ten reps of these and in just a few sets your arms will be feeling the burn.
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Engages: Chest, Shoulders, Triceps
Push up exercises and their many variations are some of the best body weight exercises, as you’ll see in the following few options. But, you don’t need to get fancy; when done with proper form (as shown above), even the traditional push up delivers a great chest workout.
Narrow Width Push Ups
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Engages: Triceps, Shoulders, Chest
Narrow width push ups are a more difficult variation of the last exercise that puts additional work on the triceps. Do these daily, and your arms will be toned for sure!
Dive Bomber Push Ups
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Engages: Chest, Shoulders, Triceps, Back, Core
The dive bomber push up is probably the most difficult to perfect on this list, because the motion is a little confusing at first. Watch this video to perfect your form, then hit the floor. This exercise makes our list because of how many muscles it works in one fluid motion.
Lying Leg Raises
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Grab your mat and get ready for some abs. Gone are the days where crunches are the recommended ab workout, because they can actually hurt more than they help. Instead, opt for leg raises. Let your legs get low without touching the ground, then bring them up. This simple exercise is actually one of the best ways to develop your core.
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Here’s another ab substitute that’s much better for you than your average crunch. Try rotating between a circuit of planks and side planks (be sure to get both sides!) for a 5 minute ab workout anywhere, any time.
Incline Push Ups
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Engages: Chest, Biceps, Triceps
Although the above demonstration uses a bench, you don’t need anything that fancy. Simply find a medium-low flat surface, then use the same form you would for a push up on it. This will concentrate more of the work into your upper chest and arms to get more definition.
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Engages: Triceps, Biceps, Core, Legs
Yes, this one looks silly. Want to know what’s anything but funny? The incredible, full body work out that crab walks can provide when done properly. Go up and down your hallway a few times, and your arms, legs and core will be feeling it.
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Engages: Cardio, Chest, Legs, Triceps, Core
You may have bad memories of doing these in high school, but your angry gym teacher assigned them for a reason. Burpees are a high intensity workout that not only push you to the edge aerobically, but work four main muscle groups as well.
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Engages: Core, Cardio, Glutes, Legs
Here’s another high intensity aerobic exercise that also gets your muscles working. Mountain climbers are great to throw into an ab training circuit, or even to do every morning before you get in the shower. They provide more bang for your buck than almost any other exercise, since they’re so simple and convenient.
So, no more excuses. Get out there and get in shape, wherever you are!