Sunday, May 15, 2016
It goes without saying that regular exercise is key to leading a healthy lifestyle and whilst a healthy diet can go so far, your body needs physical activity to keep it in shape too.
Of course, with so many of us leading busy lives, it can mean that exercise gets put to the bottom of the list. But there are plenty of ways you can exercise in the comfort of your own home, at your own convenience and with no extra cost either.
Many home exercises don’t require any specialist equipment, or certainly the ones we provide here don’t. This means that you can still burn calories, tone muscles and give your heart a workout without having to fork out on any equipment. Although, some of the exercises here do require additional props, but these are all things readily available in your home.
One thing that many people ask is, does it matter when you exercise? In short, the answer is no. Any exercise during the day is going to have a positive effect on your general health; however, certain times can offer different benefits.
For example, studies show that exercising first thing in the morning can burn more calories, due to low glycogen levels, and build muscle as testosterone levels are higher. Plus, it revs your metabolism, so you will naturally burn more calories throughout the day.
Although, working out at other points during the day, such as in the afternoon or after work, will also provide benefits. An afternoon workout when your body is at its peak can improve performance so that you can exercise for longer and harder. Whereas an evening workout can help you unwind after a busy day, just make sure you exercise several hours before you go to sleep, as the endorphins can make you feel wired.
Tone your upper arms
Strengthen and tone your upper arms with the help of a standard chair:
Sit on a stable chair and grip both sides of the seat firmly. Keeping your hands in place, slowly edge your bottoms forward off the seat, keeping your knees hip-width apart and at a 90-degree angle. Gently lower yourself by bending the arms, push back up and repeat 10-15 times.
Give your heart and lungs a good workout and burn calories with simple star jumps:
Stand tall with your arms by your side and slightly bend the knees in an area with plenty of room to move. Jump up while extending your arms and legs outwards and repeat as many times as you can, interchanging with rest periods of running or walking on the spot for at least 10 minutes.
The resistance lunge
This exercise tones both your upper and lower body, combining a shoulder press and lunge motion. To give added resistance, you can use equally weighted objects, such as water bottles or food tins.
Standing with your right leg forward, take a weight in either hand and raise your fists to shoulder height. Next, simultaneously raise your arms above your head, whilst bending your right knee into a lunge position, then change to the left leg. Do 12-24 repetitions on each side.
For a flatter stomach, this exercise will tone and trim your waistline: Lie on the floor with your knees bent and feet flat on the floor, hip-width apart. With your hands across your chest or on your thighs, gently curl up towards your knees until your shoulders are 3 inches off the floor, making sure you don’t tuck your neck into your chest. Hold the position for 2 seconds, then repeat 12 times.
For a toned derriere, these bottom bridges will strengthen your buttocks and lower back:
Lie on the floor and bend your knees, bringing your heels close to your bottom, but placed shoulder-width apart. Raise your hips up to form a straight line from the shoulder to your knees and hold the position for a few seconds, clenching the buttocks and abdomen muscles. Repeat 8- 10 times.
These bodyweight exercises, whether you do them first thing in the morning or after work, will help to tone and trim your body, while giving your heart a good workout and burning calories. All these exercises can be easily done in your home to fit in with your own daily routine, making keeping fit, free and straightforward.