Looking to get in some exercise, but not looking to commit your life to the gym? Check out these work-outs that take little-to-no extra effort!

We all know fitness fanatics; they eat right, hit the gym every day, and working out is their religion.

And we all know people who prefer to watch TV, lounge on the couch every chance they get, and do as little physical activity as possible.

But these are the extremes. There are plenty of adults in between who want to exercise and understand its importance but can’t quite gather the motivation to hit the gym.

Good news:

You don’t have to go to the gym to work out! There are many ways to exercise without making it feel like a chore.

If you’re ready to start working out but don’t want to do too much activity, here’s how to exercise without putting in a lot of effort.

Walk More

The simple act of walking is an incredible exercise.

If you want to get in a good workout without feeling like you’ve worked out at all, walk as much as possible throughout the day.

For city dwellers, make it a point to walk to work or walk to your favorite restaurant or park instead of calling a Lyft. Meanwhile, people that live in the country or suburbs can take advantage of nature’s beauty. Spend 20 minutes or so walking around your neighborhood at the end of the day.

For the millions of people that work from home and live the non-commuter lifestyle, make it your mission to walk around your house as much as possible.

The commute from your bedroom to your home office is certainly one of convenience. But it also means that you’ll have to put in at least a little bit of effort to make sure that you don’t become sedentary and sit all day. Doing small exercises at home can go a long way.

It’s human nature to find inspiration in progress. So if you need something to get you moving more, buy a pedometer! Pedometers track every step you take, and you can find them on Amazon for as little as $10. Track your steps daily and challenge yourself to beat your daily record to make even more progress.

Need even more motivation to walk?

Get a dog!

Having a puppy that needs multiple bathroom breaks each day will force you to get outside and walk a bit, whether you want to or not.

Always Take the Stairs

Escalators and elevators are just two examples of inventions that have made us super lazy. Don’t get me wrong, they’re essential when you need to climb several stories in a high-rise apartment or a tall office building. But if you only have to climb a few flights to get where you’re going, opt for the stairs instead.

Stair-stepping is an excellent exercise for your leg muscles as well as your glutes. And, in most cases, you’ll get where you’re going even faster than waiting for the elevator to arrive or taking that slow escalator ride up.

If you live or work on a high floor in your building, you can still incorporate stairs into your daily routine. Just get off the elevator one or two floors below your destination and force yourself to walk up the steps. This might also require you to walk down a long hallway to reach the stairwell, so BONUS! Extra steps = more exercise.

Workout While You Watch TV

Can’t bear the thought of putting on workout clothes and trekking to the gym? You don’t have to. There are plenty of exercises you can do right from the comfort of your home. And they don’t require any special equipment or a pricey monthly subscription package to have a trainer scream at you from afar.

Search your On-Demand network and streaming services for at-home workouts that you can do anytime, anywhere. From yoga to dance to cardio, free exercises are at your fingertips; you just have to look for them.

Some people don’t like the idea of following along with a structured workout led by a perfectly fit instructor. That’s understandable. So keep in mind that a few minutes of exercise here and there is better than no exercise at all. You can even incorporate working out into your TV watching routine.

On commercial breaks and during trailers for new shows, do some squats or lunges. Run in place for two minutes. Jump rope for the entire commercial break. When you’ve finished watching a movie, jog or dance in place while the credits are rolling.

Little bits of exercise here and there can add up to hours of working out by the end of the week!

Turn House Cleaning Into a Workout

Even if you have a professional house cleaner do your dirty work, cleaning up throughout the week is unavoidable. You’ll still have to sweep, dust, vacuum, and make your bed every day.

The next time you clean your house, make your movements a little bit bigger. Squat a little deeper to pick things up off the floor. Stretch a little farther and lean in a bit more when pushing your vacuum or mop.

You can turn cleaning into even greater exercise if you turn on music and dance around the house while dusting, sweeping, and folding laundry. So put on some tunes that get your blood pumping, and dance like you’re in your favorite club. Dancing is excellent exercise, and it makes the chore of cleaning a lot more fun.

Delete Your Favorite Food Delivery Apps

While this may sound more painful than the thought of actually working out, you can get in some exercise just by deleting your food delivery apps.

Instead of waiting for GrubHub or DoorDash to bring you your next meal, go out and get the food for yourself. Jump on your bike, walk to your favorite deli, or jog to your favorite restaurant. Whatever it takes.

Make walking to get your meals a daily habit, including when you’re hungry in the office and when you’re at home on the weekends. The more steps you incorporate into your daily routine, the better you’ll feel.

There’s an added bonus to deleting your food delivery apps:

Saving money!

Those delivery charges, tips, and processing fees add up quickly. The less you order in, the more you’ll be able to save at the end of the week.


Exercising is key to living a healthy, happy life. And you don’t have to run marathons, bench press weights, or spend hours spinning to make exercise a part of your daily routine.

You also don’t have to spend money to get fit. There’s no need to buy an expensive treadmill or stationary bike for your home. You don’t have to hire a personal trainer or spend hundreds of dollars per year on a membership to a gym.

So walk more. Do quick, fun exercises while you watch television. Take the stairs every chance you get. Dance and stretch your body while you clean the house. These are all effective (and free) ways to get your body moving without feeling like you’re putting in too much effort!

Author Bio

Adam Marshall is a freelance writer who specializes in all things apartment organization, real estate, and college advice. He currently works with The Cynwyd to help them with their online marketing.