It might not look or feel like it right now, but hot days and short sleeve shirts are almost here. You want to look and feel your best, but getting ready to be comfortable in your own skin when it’s time to ditch the sweaters can feel an arduous task. Especially if you don’t have access to a facility, or a gym membership. Even if you do have a gym membership, it can be hard to find the motivation to go if you have to fight through ice, snow, and icky slush.
Thankfully, there’s plenty of exercises you can do at home, that don’t require any special machines or equipment. And there are plenty of fun exercises, beyond the basic push-ups and sit-ups. All you need is a little bit of space, your body weight, and a little drive, and you can feel a lot less guilty about skipping the gym and staying home. You can check out these exercises, and much more, that target one or multiple muscle groups at self.com
Target Area: Abs and Core
If you’re looking to target that midsection, these exercises will both work those muscles and get that heart rate up.
This is a variation of the basic plank. Like the plank, you’ll need to begin with your hands flat on the floor, shoulder-width apart, and your legs straight and toes pressed to the ground. Unlike your usual plank, you’ll need to start with your hips slightly higher. Make sure you engage your core and quads. Keeping your legs together, your feet are going to jump forward, bringing your knees toward your left elbow. Jump your feet back to start, jump forward toward your right elbow, and then jump back to the start.
Bird Dog Crunch
This is another variation on the basic crunch. Start on your hands and knees, like a tabletop with your wrists just blow your shoulders. Extend your one arm forward and opposite leg back. Be sure to keep your back flat and hips lined with the floor. Tightening your core, draw your elbow and opposite knee inward so they meet near the middle of your body. Repeat with the opposite elbow and knee.
Do 3 sets of 12 reps for a good burn.
Target Area: Arms and Upper Body
Try this push-up variation if you want something more challenging than your basic push-up. To begin, place your toes on a raised surface, like a box or a step. Like your normal push-up, keep your hands flat and shoulder-width apart. Your shoulders should be above your wrists. Bend your elbows to lower your chest to the floor. Be sure to engage your core and glutes. And push through your hands to raise yourself back up.
Bodyweight Triceps Dip
No weights needed here. This is an interesting and fun variation on the triceps dip. You begin on the floor. Rest your legs in front of you, heels pressed to the floor and knees bent. Place your hands on the floor, under your shoulders, flared out to the side, with your palms facing outward behind you. Bend your elbows to lower your butt to the ground and straighten your arms to raise yourself up again.
Perform these exercises 10 times for 3-4 sets.
Target Area: Legs and Glutes
Pilé Squat Calf Raises
This is another fun twist on a familiar exercise. To do a Pilé Squat Calf Raise, you’ll need to stand with your legs spread, wider than shoulder width. Point your toes outward resting your hands on your hips. Squat, lowering your butt so your thighs become parallel with the floor. While in the squat, lift your heels off the floor. Hold that position and lower yourself back down.
Another fun variant of a basic exercise is the curtsy lunge. You begin this exercise like you would a typical lunge, standing tall, feet slightly apart. Step one leg behind the opposite leg diagonally to the side, lowering yourself into the lunge position, so your knee just touches the floor. Pushing through the heel of that leg, bring yourself back up to the starting position. Repeat this on the other side.
Do 3-4 sets of 10 reps.
Whether you’re a complete beginner, or a fitness fanatic, you don’t have to leave your house or even your bedroom to get in a workout. Without spending anything, you can have yourself a challenging and fun workout routine using just your bodyweight.