With the summer season in full swing and the up and down weather we've been having, working out is not just confined to the space between four walls and a ceiling at your local gym or health club. Getting outside and having a great workout session is refreshing to both your mind and body. The best part is you do not need any fancy equipment and you don't even need to go for a jog to get an intense, fat burning, muscle building workout. Most people can do a body weight workout right in their own driveway, on their deck, or out in the backyard.
Best part is–minus a decent warmup–you can perform a great workout in less than 45 minutes.
Using your own body weight as a form of resistance for exercise has been around for years and some people even use only body weight exercises when they workout. Navy Seals are a prime example of body weight training. Most of their basic physical training uses the resistance of their own weight.
For beginners new to exercise and training it is often recommended to do body weight only training for a few weeks to get used to the forces of resistance. Below is a quick workout that anyone can do, from kids as young as 5 to people over 80 years old. The most important part is you perform the exercises with proper form and you go about the workout at your own pace. Some people may rest 30 seconds between exercises while some may need up to five minutes. Always perform a good warm-up before the training and a nice cool down afterwards.
Starting with a good warm up is essential to injury prevention and proper movement during exercise. Below are some stretches both dynamic and static that put together my normal warmup. You can visit this blog post about stretching for an in depth explanation and visual aids on stretches and warming up. http://activatefitness.blogspot.com/2012/05/stretching-101.html
Also YouTube is an excellent place to watch professionals show proper form and execution.
- Squat to Stand: 10 reps
- Heel to Butt Dynamic Stretch: 10 reps each leg
- Squat Stretch: 30 seconds hold
- Static Kneeling Hip Flexor Stretch: 30 seconds hold, each leg
- Dynamic Kneeling Hip Flexor Stretch: 5-8 reps, each leg
- Glute March: 15 reps, each leg
- Glute Bridge: 10 reps
- Lunges Forward: 5 reps, each leg
- Side Lunges: 5 reps, each leg
- Knee Highs: 30 seconds continuous to next movement
- Knee Highs, now with added arm circles: 30 seconds
- Jumping Jacks: 20 reps
Rest 30 seconds to one minute before performing workout. If you need to rest between stretching movements do so, try to limit rest to a maximum of 30 seconds.
During workout perform 10 reps for each movement without resting between. Again, if you need to, try to limit rest to a maximum of 30 seconds.
- Body weight Squat: 10 reps
- Push-Ups: 10 reps
- Walking Lunges: 10 reps, each leg
- Mountain Climbers: 10 reps, each leg
- Squat Thrusts: 10 reps, each leg
- Jumping Jacks: 20-50 reps
- Sit-Ups: 10-50 reps
- Bird Dog: 10-25 reps, each side
- Crab Walk: Distance of at least 5 feet (If you feel you can't move try to statically hold movement for at least 30 seconds)
Go through this circuit two to five times. Don't go beyond your capabilities. Perform the circuit with proper form, slow and steady, at your own pace. If you can only get through the workout one time, good, next time you'll improve and do better!
Finish the workout with a nice cool down doing some of the stretches, such as the Static Kneeling Hip Flexor Stretch and Squat Stretch to keep your glutes, hips, and legs loose and flexible.
Now go enjoy the beautiful weather outside and get sweaty!
Thanks for reading,