There are no excuses anymore when it comes to fitness. Even if you can’t afford a gym membership or personal trainer, there are a tonne of free resources out there for you online to help you understand fitness, including this one! Incorporating some simple home exercises into your daily routine will soon build up your fitness levels, and target any specific areas that you want to work on. We’ve broken down some of the best exercises to try out at home, these won’t cost you a thing and they’ll really start pushing your body into action.
Exercises For Legs & Butt
One of the most complained about areas of the body are our thighs, as it’s often the last place your body loses weight. If you find walking and slogging it out on the treadmill aren’t getting you results then we suggest the following:
Squats – a simple but effective lower body exercise, if you’re doing it properly. Ensure that you stand with your feet at should distance apart and slowly bend to a ‘chair sitting’ position. Try and keep your back as straight as possible, and repeat! Set yourself a daily goal for example 50 squats and try to increase it gradually.
Lunges – these are underestimated, super easy and will get those muscles in your butt working! A few tips for perfecting your lunge; take a large step forward and ensure your leg is parallel to the floor. Your back leg should be bent and allow your heel to come off the floor. Push on your forward leg, step back and repeat!
Bridges – another great exercise for working towards a firmer butt. Simply lie on your back with your heels close to your butt, knees bent and arms flat. Raise your hips, they should then create a straight line from knees to shoulders. You should feel your abdominal muscles working too on this one as you come up.
Calf raises – these specifically target your calf muscles and are extremely simple. Simply stand on the edge of a step or even your bottom stair (just be safe!). Stand up straight, pull your muscles in and lift your heels so that you are standing on your tip toes, ensuring your legs are kept straight and your weight is mainly on the balls of your feet. Keep this position for 2-3 seconds before lowering and repeating.
Exercises For Arms
Banish the bingo wings and replace them for toned, stronger arms. Invest in a set of weights or if you can’t afford it, use items around the house such as tins. Many women steer clear of weights in fear of bulky and muscly arms, this won’t be the case! You’re not going to turn into Hulk Hogan overnight, so give these a go:
Elbow Plank – these won’t require weights and rely solely on your body, working on your shoulders and biceps. Resting on your forearms and knees, step your feet out so that you get into a plank position. Ensure that your spine is parallel to floor and pull your abs in as tight as you can. Try and hold this position for 30 seconds, but if you can’t don’t worry a little bit of practice makes perfect! Repeat 3-5 times daily.
Dumbbell Shoulder Presses – using dumbbells in each hand, stand with your feet at hip-width apart and bring the dumbbells up to your shoulders, and then stretch your arms up over your head fully. Allow a slight bend in your knees and repeat.
Biceps Curl – Using dumbbells again in each hand, stand with your feet shoulder width apart and curl the dumbbells towards your chest, lower down and then repeat, ensuring that you keep the tension in your biceps.
Exercises For Your Belly
A toned tum is pretty high up on all of our body wish lists, due to the stubborn fats in your stomach it can be a hard area to shift excess weight so it requires a lot of attention. Let’s get those abs in gear.
Stomach crunches – A simple exercise, lie on your back with your feet flat on the floor and your knees bent. Hands can be across your chest, behind your head or rested on your thighs, whichever works best for you. Gradually curl towards your knees, aiming for your shoulders to be between 3 and 4 inches off the floor. Hold the position for around 3-5 seconds and then slowly lower back down, repeat this 15 times. As you improve, try this exercise with your legs raised.
The plank – Beginners often find this hard to master but it’s all about practice and building up your body strength. Get down to the ground and rest on your forearms with your legs straight out behind you resting on your toes. Raise your hips and try to maintain a flat line, your shoulders need to be directly above your elbows. Hold the position for ten seconds and repeat. If you really struggle with this try it with your knees on the floor first and gradually work your way up.
Donkey kickbacks – a killer move that will strengthen your core and blitz belly fat. Get down on all fours and ensure that your hands are shoulder width apart. Draw in your abdominal muscles and keeping one knee bent, lift the other leg up behind you until your foot is parallel to the ceiling. Try your best to maintain balance, this can be tricky but building up your core will really help with this. Lower your leg and repeat on the other side.
You’ll be a more toned version of yourself in no time with a selection of these exercises worked into your daily routine! Good luck.
Tilly-Jayne is a health obsessed blogger and writer for wellness and training centre the DVCC.