fWork (out) from home

No equipment? No worries, you only need your body weight to get them done.

Some days, it’s just really difficult to go outside. So, what to do to get some exercise, especially if you don’t have a gym membership to rely on or want to stay healthy and exercise at home on a budget? You may think you need an expensive gym membership or fancy equipment to do workout effectively, but results are possible just by using your own body weight. With that in mind, here are some exercises that will have you look great in no time:

1. Running or walking

No expensive treadmill or elliptical needed, just your own legs and a good pair of running shoes. "If you focus 80 per cent of your energy on cardio, you will see your body transform," says Ashley Marriott, a Los Angeles-based fitness trainer. "Look at runners and cyclists; they’re not doing spot training, they do cardio," says Marriott. Most of the people you see that have amazing abs, they’re runners, swimmers and athletes. She is a huge advocate of one trick: when you do cardio, pull your navel into your core. You'll see increased strength from that.

To do: Try walking at a quick clip or running a slow jog for 15-30 minutes to start. Add in increments of 10 minutes weekly.

2. Squats

Squats are one of the best exercises you can do. It's easy to progress to more difficult versions over time; and in the meantime, perfect your form for best results.

To do: Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart and put your arms out straight in front of you or behind your head. Look straight ahead and keep your chest up and back flat. Your back should remain in this neutral position throughout the movement. Squat down as low as you can and then, pop back up to the starting position by driving through your heels. Weight should remain on your heels throughout.

3. Push-ups

Push-ups work with your chest, shoulders, triceps and core for a complete muscle-building exercise. They’re a major deal, so don’t neglect them.

To do: Place your hands on the ground slightly wider than shoulder-width apart and lower yourself until your chest almost touches the floor. Squeeze your glutes together and tense your abs as you lower and raise your body. Keep your elbows close to your sides to protect your shoulders.

4. Crunches

They help with core strength and may tone your midsection, but don’t obsess. They should be one small part of an overall plan to develop core strength, which is important for overall body strength and muscle building.

To do: Lie on a mat for comfort. Bend the knees so feet are flat on the floor. Cross arms in front of chest. Lift your shoulders towards the ceiling using your abdominal muscles and pause at the peak of the movement. Don’t lift your entire back off the floor, as this can cause back strain. Exhale and contract abs as you go up. Inhale and ease slowly back down until shoulders are flat on the floor. Don’t just plop backward; control the movement. Go for two to three sets of 10 to start.

5. Walking lunges

Lunges are quite effective in terms of strengthening legs. Lunges target large muscle groups of your lower body; this boosts your metabolism and helps you lose weight much faster. When this excess fat is removed, lunges work on the shape and strength of your lower body.

To do: From a standing position, take a giant step forward with knee bent at 90 degrees. Keep knees over ankles and shoulders over hips. Take another step and repeat until fatigued.

6. Tricep dips

Again, the back of the arm is a place where women carry weight genetically, and that may be the last place that some women lose weight and so, watch your calorie intake and get more cardio.

To do: Sitting at the edge of a chair, place your hands over the edge of the seat, keeping knuckles pointing forward. With legs out in front bent at a 90-degree position and feet pointing ahead, shoulders down and elbows close to your side, slowly bend elbows into 90-degree angle, lowering your butt towards the floor. Pause and return to sitting, keeping pressure on the heel of your hands.

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