It’s my routine to work out at the gym 3 times a week. I enjoy the hands on help from trainers, the accountability of seeing familiar faces, and the convenience of barbells, dumbbells and other exercise equipment. Oh and my favorite part – the kid care!
But this week was especially busy for me, and I only got to the gym once. Today I was determined to get a workout in even though I couldn’t swing going to the gym. I ate dinner with my parents and while the kids visited with their Grandma and Grandpa, I looked around at what I could use to fashion a workout.
Here’s what I came up with. Part One covers upper body and abs.
My Dad had some 30 pound free weights. I typically do squats with a barbell that weighs 95 pounds, so those were fine for my legs, but were too heavy for my arms (I use 20 pound weights for rows and 10 pound weights for my biceps).
So instead, I did planks.
My trainer taught me this exercise. Basically you assume the position of a full, military style pushup. And you just HOLD it. It’s deceptive because it looks pretty easy, but requires a lot of ab strength as well as upper body and even leg strength.
Be sure your shoulders, hips and ankles are all one long, lean line. Hold it as long as you can with good form, then rest. Repeat this exercise 3 times.
If you have a baby or toddler, lie down on your back with your knees bent and feet flat on the floor. Have your toddler crawl over to you and when they are on top of your chest, place your hands under their arms and lift them up and down above your chest. They’ll love it and you’ll be doing a bench press. Do 10 or 12 reps then rest. Try to do 3 sets.
Do The Hula
I grabbed a hula hoop and hooped for about 5 minutes without stopping. This is a great workout for the core. If you keep your arms raised around your shoulders, it also keeps your heart rate up.
For another abs exercise I simply laid on the floor on my back with my knees slightly bent and did sit ups. To make them more challenging, I didn’t let my head hit the floor but only went down 3/4 of the way. If you can’t do a full sit up, that’s fine. Just come up as far as you can. Do 3 sets of 10 reps.
Part Two? Lower body!