Because of the chaos of daily life, sometimes our schedules just won't accommodate a trip to the gym. To avoid excuses for not working out, here are a few quick workouts to put into action to get a toned, trim body in record time!
TAKE IT OUTSIDE
Outdoor exercise offers even more health benefits than going to the gym. A study has found that hiking, biking and walking in the fresh air has a more significant effect on mental health than exercising indoors. Just five minutes of outdoor activity can improve mood, reduce stress and increase self-esteem.
TIP: Take a walk after lunch. It will make for a more productive afternoon.
POWER UP YOUR RUN
Adding wall-sits to the end of every run will strengthen your quads, hamstrings and glutes, improving your speed and endurance. Lean against a wall with your feet shoulder-width apart, then squat until your knees are bent at 45 degrees. Hold for 30 to 60 seconds; work up to doing ten sets.
Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart holding a three- to four-pound medicine ball in your hands. Bend your arms up so that the ball is at eye level over your right shoulder. As you bring the ball toward your left knee, step out with your left leg and bend it no further than 90 degrees, keeping your right leg straight. Return to the starting position. Do 10 to 15 reps and repeat on the other leg.
JUMP, JUMP, JUMP TO IT!
The best cardio workout hands down is the jump-rope double-turn maneuver. Do a basic jump for five minutes, then jump twice as high and turn the rope twice as fast, so it passes under your feet twice before you land.
DID YOU KNOW: You can burn about 26 calories per minute while jumping rope.
SHORE UP YOUR CORE
The plank is one of the best exercises you can do for your core because it builds isometric (contractions of a particular muscle or group of muscles) strength. To help sculpt your waistline and improve your posture, try this plank workout just 3 times a week:
High Plank — 40 seconds
Plank Hip Dips — 20 reps
Plank Shoulder Taps — 20 reps
Plank Up-Downs — 20 reps
Repeat the circuit as many times as you can for 5 minutes.
GIVE YOURSELF A BREAK
Follow the 80/20 plan: Eighty percent of the year, you'll exercise regularly and eat well. Know that you'll slip 20 percent of the time due toholidays and work deadlines. Accept that fitness isn't an all-or-nothing proposition. By doing so, you are less likely to put unnecessary pressure and stress on your life and fitness routine.
Sources: wellandgood.com, self.com, health.com