7 Exercises You Can Do Anywhere To Stay In Great Shape

Last updated on : August 19 2020

Girl doing sit ups on a gym mat

To maintain an optimum energy level on any given day, one needs to integrate a fitness regimen in their daily schedule. It might be a sophisticated workout routine done at a designated time in a specific workout area with different equipment. Other times the exercise might be easy to implement: a regimen you do anywhere, anytime, and without equipment.

In this article, we want to focus on the latter. The easy-to-do exercises that cost zero dollars. The only thing you must commit is time and willingness to learn. Now, remember the exercises might be “easy,” but if not done correctly or under the guidance of a certified health coach, they could cause more harm than good.

With that in mind, let’s get started on your fitness journey. This article will guide you through seven workouts that you can do anywhere to stay in great shape. You’ll learn how to do the exercises, the common mistakes, and the benefits of each exercise.

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1.  Walking

Walking is rarely regarded as real exercise. It is low impact, less demanding, and often done as a recreational activity. However, what you forget is that as unreal as it seems, walking, when done with fitness goals in mind, produces the same result as other “real” workouts.

Getting Started

Walking is simple, and you can do it anywhere. However, for maximum benefit, you must be deliberate on when and how you’ll do it.

Walking 30 minutes for three to four days per week is a good starting point. You can break out the sessions across the day or have a single session. Plan your sessions in three phases, warm-up, exercise, and cool down.

For the warm-up, walk at a slow pace for 5 minutes. Proceed to moderate-intense walk for at least 20 minutes and lastly cooldown by picking a comfortable pace for the remaining five minutes.

As a beginner, start with short distances. As you progress, you can increase the distance, the pace, and the number of days in a week you do your walking exercise. 

Walking is not comparable to running, but it is the preferred exercise for most people, including those with obesity, knee and ankle pain, and back problems.

Benefits

Walking helps with weight loss, muscles and joints strengthening, cardiovascular health, and blood circulation. In mental health, walking boosts mood, reduces stress, anxiety, and depression, and promotes creative thinking.

2.  Jumping Jacks

Jumping jack is a plyometric exercise, meaning it combines both resistance and aerobic training. Therefore, it simultaneously strengthens your heart, lungs, and muscles. Jumping jack is the perfect workout for the whole body. Plus, you can do it anywhere, anytime.

The exercise involves standing straight with your hands resting on your thighs. Then, you jump up, spreading your leg to the side and bringing your hands overhead, almost touching each other. Next, bounce back to the starting position, standing straight with your hands on the side.

You can include several jumping jack variations in your exercise, including cross jack, squat jack, burpee jack, and hop jack, just to mention a few.

A 10 minutes jumping jack exercise can burn up to 100 calories. The more vigorous you are, the higher the rate of calorie burn. If you are just starting, you don’t have to do the exercise for 10 minutes straight. You can split the workout into two or three sessions.

Common Mistake

The main challenge when doing this particular exercise is the lack of coordination. You jump up, spreading your legs without stretching your hands overhead or vice versa. If you experience this challenge, take a break, then try again.

Benefits

Jumping jack works the feet muscles, stretches your shoulders, tones multiple muscles, and increases your heart rate. You can combine the exercise with other workout routines for a complete training session.

3.  Push-Ups

The push-up position involves getting on the ground on all fours. Your palms should be on the floor, spread wider than the shoulder length. Extend your legs at the back such that your toes and palms support your body. Please ensure your body is straight and aligned from head to toe.

Bend your elbow and slowly lower your body to the floor. When your chest touches the floor, straighten your elbow and get to the starting position. Tighten your core muscles throughout the exercise.

You can do three sets for the number of reps you are comfortable with.

You can add variations to the exercise if push-ups are part of your regular workout. You can also do one more push-up every day to continuously build your strength. Besides, you can opt for the knee variation if you find the standard push-up hard.

Push up Best Practices

Push-ups might seem basic on the surface, but many people get it wrong and end up hurting themselves. Here are the key things to look out for:

  • Your neck, head, and spine must be in a straight line.
  • Ensure the middle part of your body is not sagging. So, pull-in your core and ensure your back in straight.
  • Do not raise your butt.
  • Always ensure your elbow is slightly bent.

Benefits

Push-ups are the most common and basic type of exercise. Doing push-ups helps you build strength in the upper body, the core, and the lower back.

4.  Squats

Squats are strength training that focuses on the muscles on your lower and upper body. It engages the muscles you use in daily activities and boosts brain activity.

As a strength exercise, squats reduce the risk of injury, increase your flexibility, and promote your performance. It is a powerful exercise with excellent results when done right. Squats work muscles in the lower back, keeping your glutes and thighs toned.

So, how do you do squats the right way? To start, open your feet shoulder-width apart. Stretch your hands in front of you or hold them behind your head. Next, Bend your knees and hips as if sitting on a chair. Ensure your butt sticks out, your chin and head are straight, and your core is engaged. Squat downwards as far as possible and then stand up again. Repeat the routine.

For beginners, three sets of 10 squats is a good starting point.

Squats have several variations, including side squats, prisoner squats, and pistol squats, among others. Depending on your level of fitness, you can always add the variations.

Common Mistake

Often a beginner will stop the exercise the moment they feel a burn on the glute or legs. That’s being shallow, and chances are you won’t get the most of your training. The best practice is to note in advance the number of squats you must do daily. Commit to reaching that goal every day.

Benefits

Squats strengthen your core muscles, making movement, bending, lifting loads, standing, or turning easier. It helps with your posture, balance, and relieves back pain.

The exercise strengthens bones, ligaments, and tendons making your muscles resilient and reducing the risk of injury. An intense squat exercise burns calories too.

5.  Lunges

Lunges are great fitness exercises for endurance and strength. Lunges work your hamstrings, inner thighs, glutes, hips, legs, and back. Lunges make you strong and improve your mobility and stability.

It is a common exercise for athletes like cyclists, runners, and swimmers. It is also a perfect option for anyone thinking of increasing their strength.

To practice the lunges, stand with your feet hip-width apart and your hands holding your waste. Take a huge step forward with your right knee and bend it while simultaneously bending your left knee on the floor at 90°. Then push back to the starting position with your right knee. Repeat the procedure with the left knee.

You can do three sets of 10 reps and increase your sets with time.

Lunges come in several variations. You can do the slide reverse lunge, walking lunge, split squat lunge, etc.

Common Mistake

Sometimes, you may strain either your right or left foot by stepping forward or backward too much. The strain may cause pressure on one knee, causing a tear or ligament strain. To avoid this problem, adjust your form when working out.

The Benefits of Lunges

Lunges help you cut body fat and build lean muscles. The leg movements help with body balance, stability, and coordination as the exercise involves support from the core and the spine to maintain balance.

Also, the lunge exercise routine helps with aligning your body asymmetrically. It is one of the exercises recommended for correcting misalignments and imbalances.

6.  Sit-Up

A sit-up is a basic exercise, yet quite effective for abdominal muscles.

Sit-ups involve lying on your back with your knees bent at 90° and your feet rooted on the floor. Use your fingers to hold the back of your ears. Another option is to cross your hands across your chest or leave them by the sides. Slowly lift your torso to meet your thighs using your core muscles. Then lower your body back to the floor steadily. Relax your shoulders and engage your core as you do the exercise. Ensure your back lies flat on the mat, and your neck and spine are aligned.

You can start your sit-up exercise with three sets of 15 reps. However, when starting, you can rest in between sits-up.

Remember, it is vital to give your muscles recovery time. Therefore, avoid doing sits-up every day. You can skip a day and do it at an interval.

Common Mistake

Placing the hand behind the head and using it to lift the body instead of using the core. Use your hands to support your neck. You can also change their position across your chest or behind your ears to avoid this mistake.

Benefits

This popular exercise helps you stay in great shape. When you are consistent, you’ll be flexible and find it easy to do your daily activities. Sit-ups help with form, stability, and posture. You can perform better in sports activities.

The spine movement increases flexibility in your hips and back. Besides, the more you build your muscles, the more you increase your stability. 

7.  Planks

Planks are part of exercises where you use your body weight to get in shape. The exercise works on several muscles, including your core, bicep, neck, arms, legs, and shoulders. Planks promote strength and endurance.

Get on the ground in a plank position: Place your elbows directly below your shoulders, your toes should be hip-width apart on the floor. Maintain a straight position from head to toe, ensuring your back is flat. Hold the position for 10 seconds as you squeeze your core, quads, and glutes. Also, ensure you maintain your breathing at a normal pace. You can increase the time you hold the plank to 20, 35, or 60 seconds to increase your endurance.

Plank variations include the mermaid, reverse side star, and the extended plank, among others.

Common Mistake

You might collapse your back, which leads to straining the spine. The key is engaging your core muscles by pulling your belly button towards your spine. Also, widen your shoulder and ensure your palms are embracing the floor, widely spread.

Benefits of Planks

The holding up position leads to developing and toning different muscles, including biceps, neck, shoulder, and arms. It’s also a great workout routine for butt and thighs.

Get in Shape Wherever You are 

Often people postpone exercise because of the time, resources, and commitment. But that’s about to change with the comprehensive list of seven exercises you can do anywhere with zero equipment.

You can drop down for a set of sits-up before getting to the shower, perform some lunges at lunch break, or take an evening walk.

You can have a complete fitness routine by combining three or four of these exercises. For example, you can do squats, push-ups, and planks. With time you can increase your workout duration, include different variations, and take up new challenges. 

It’s time to take your fitness in your own hands and achieve the best results without spending on the gym or purchasing any equipment to train from home. Set up regular training time, maintain the routine, and you’ll see amazing results, especially when looking to turn on the seductive heat.  

So, why are you waiting? Get into your workout gear and burn some calories from your vacation rental, work trip, office, or corner of your bedroom, ensuring you avoid the common workout mistakes

Also, exercise has the added benefit of boosting your immune system, so yet another reason to get going today. 

About the author

Tyler Read is the owner of ptpioneer.com, which is a website dedicated to helping people get started in the personal training industry. He helps people discover, study, and pass their fitness exams. Check out his free videos for the latest trends.

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