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4 Best Beginner Exercises To Do At Home

4 Best Beginner Exercises To Do At Home

You can start getting fit today! Here are four easy beginner exercises you can do at home and continue to do as your fitness level advances. While this is directed toward beginners, these exercises are good for anyone — especially busy people. When you can’t make it to the gym or you are traveling, all you need is a little space to expend maximum effort. You don’t need to let a lack of time be an excuse for neglecting your fitness.

Taking that first step toward a strong body needn’t be hard. Here are some simple beginner exercises that can begin to strengthen and build your body.

Take this challenge. Do each of these exercises three to four days a week for a month. You will be amazed at how much stronger your entire body feels, and you will be ready to take on new fitness challenges. I won a few fitness awards as a US Marine, and I always found that consistency and simplicity won the day. Overdoing it, complicated routines, etc. always seemed to get in my way. But when I was consistent and simple, I stuck with it and continually improved. You can experience the same results.

Whether you have 10 minutes or an hour, use the time you have three to four days a week and you will see results. These results will motivate you to increase your effort and expand your knowledge, breadth, and level of fitness.

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Pushups

enge Liegesttz 2

    Health Benefits: Chest, biceps, and core strength. Beginner to advanced.

    Simple Steps: Start with your hands facing forward on the ground, shoulder-width apart, and chest a few inches above the ground. Keep your body straight, resting on your toes and hands. Push up to a full arm extension then release back down to a few inches above the ground. Repeat. Keep your head looking down or slightly forward. Do at least 3 sets. If necessary, you can rest your weight on your knees instead of your toes to make it easier. Start with 5 to 10 repetitions for each set and build up from there.

    Planks

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    Sports woman doing plank exercise in fitness gym

      Health Benefits: Core strength. Beginner to advanced.

      Simple steps: Place your elbows under your shoulders with your hands directly out. Keep your head looking down or slightly forward and your body straight. Hold for as long as you can, until you can’t keep your body straight, then stop. Do this 3 times. You might start with only 15 to 30 seconds. Work your way up to 2 minutes or longer.

      Burpees

      marines_burpee_zps32e8f5d2

        Health Benefits: Total body exercise, strength, and cardiovascular. Beginner to advanced.

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        Simple steps: Start from a standing position with arms at your sides. Bend your knees and lower to the ground until your hands are touching. Kick your legs back and move into a pushup position, then kick your legs forward and jump up. Repeat. Start slowly and do for a minute. Increase your speed and the amount of time as you advance. Shoot for 5 to 10 minutes of burpees.

        Jumping Rope

        fitness, sport, people, exercising and lifestyle concept - man and woman skipping with jump rope outdoors

          Health benefits: Cardiovascular, core strength, arm strength, leg strength, overall body fitness.

          Simple steps: Buy a jump rope, go to back to your childhood skills and jump! Keep your head looking forward and your hands about waste height. Start with small goals, say a minute without stopping, then build up to 10 minutes or more.

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          Fitness starts today!

          Exercise is addictive once you make it a habit. Building the habit is more important than what you do or how long you do it. Most habits take three months to establish, so if you are beginner, start your habit by committing yourself to three to four days a week. The amount of time doesn’t matter — do whatever you can fit in, even if it is only five minutes of the above exercises. Once you build this routine into a habit and you begin to feel the results, increasing the amount and type of exercises you do will be easy. And if even these simple exercises seem overwhelming, remember the simplest thing that is guaranteed to get your fitness moving forward: go outside for a walk!

          For more simple exercises that you can even do at your office, check out this link!

          Featured photo credit: vadymvdrobot via stock.adobe.com

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          Last Updated on November 27, 2020

          12 Stretching Exercises to Increase Your Flexibility

          12 Stretching Exercises to Increase Your Flexibility

          When thinking about stretching and learning how to become flexible, consider you are doing more than just elongating and strengthening your muscles. You are, in fact, improving circulation of the blood (lymphatic system), and optimizing the depth of your breath, which further enhances circulation[1].

          Stretching and yoga aren’t just trends; they are practices that have been utilized by humans arguably for hundreds of thousands of years or more. In many cases, modern humans have simply forgotten much of their ancestry, and stretching/yoga is certainly an integral part.

          The following stretching routines, if practiced consistently (every day, or a few times a week), will improve your physical and mental well-being, so let’s get into them!

          Here’s a breakdown of all the exercises I’ve covered in the video:

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          1. Standing Hamstring Stretch

          See the source image
            • Stand straight and tall with your feet hip-width apart, knees just slightly bent, and arms by your sides.
            • Exhale as you bend forward (think of a door hinge movement at the hips), lowering your head toward the floor (imagine the top of your head being parallel with the floor), while keeping your head, neck, and shoulders relaxed (do not tense up).
            • Wrap your arms around the backs of your legs, or simply grab and hold the back of your legs; holding anywhere from 45 seconds to two minutes.
            • Bend your knees and slowly “roll up” back to the standing position when you’re done.

            2. Downward Dog

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              • Start standing with your feet hip-width apart.
              • While exhaling, hinge at the hips and lower your head toward the floor.
              • Place your hands/palms on the ground.
              • Step back with your feet while keeping a neutral back/spine and with your head/neck in-line with your shoulders and arms.

              3. Deep Lunge and Twist

              See the source image
                • Start standing with your feet together hip width apart.
                • Take a large step forward with your right foot.
                • Bend your right knee and drop into a lunge, keeping your left leg as straight as you can behind you with your toes on the ground, so you feel a stretch at the front of your left thigh.
                • Place your right hand on the floor or in a pray position, and twist your upper body to the right as you extend your right arm toward the ceiling (for a deeper stretch).
                • Hold for 30 seconds to 2 minutes while taking slow and steady breaths.
                • Repeat on the other side.

                4. Piriformis Stretch

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                See the source image

                   

                  • Sit on the floor with both legs extended in front of you to start.
                  • Cross your left leg over your right, and place your left foot flat on the floor.
                  • Place your left hand on the floor behind your body.
                  • Place your right hand on your left quad or your right elbow on your left knee (as shown), and press your left leg to the right as you twist your torso to the left.
                  • If the spinal rotation causes back discomfort, remove the twist and simply use your right hand to pull your left quad in and to the right.

                  5. Figure Four Stretch

                  See the source image
                    • Lie on your back with your feet flat on the floor.
                    • Cross your left foot over your right quad.
                    • Lift your right leg off the floor. Grab onto the back of your right leg and gently pull it toward your chest.
                    • When you feel a comfortable stretch, hold there.
                    • Hold for 30 seconds to 2 minutes.
                    • Switch sides and repeat.

                    6. 90/90 Stretch

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                      • Sit with your right knee bent at 90-degrees in front of you, calf perpendicular to your body and the sole of your foot facing to the left. Keep your left foot flexed.
                      • Let your leg rest flat on the floor.
                      • Place your left knee to the left of your body, and bend the knee so that your foot faces behind you. Keep your left foot flexed.
                      • Keep your right butt cheek on the floor. Try to move the left cheek as close to the floor as possible. It may not be possible if your hips are tight.
                      • Hold for 30 seconds to 2 minutes.
                      • Repeat on the other side.

                      7. Frog Stretch

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                      See the source image

                         

                        • Start on all fours.
                        • Slide your knees wider than shoulder-width apart.
                        • Turn your toes out and rest the inner edges of your feet flat on the floor.
                        • Ensure your legs are maintaining approximately a 90-degree angle (squared off).
                        • Shift your hips back toward your heels.
                        • Move from your hands down to your forearms to get a deeper stretch, if possible.
                        • Hold for for 30 seconds to 2 minutes.

                        8. Butterfly Stretch

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                          • Sit tall on the floor with the soles of your feet together, knees bent out to the sides.
                          • Hold onto your feet (or ankles), engage your abs slightly to keep an upright posture with steady breathing, and slowly lower your body toward your feet as far as you can while pressing your knees toward the floor. Keep a neutral spine during this stretch.
                          • If you cannot lower your torso, then simply hold the stretch and aim to lower your knees closer to the ground gradually.
                          • Hold this stretch for 30 seconds to 2 minutes.

                          9. Tricep Stretch

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                            • Kneel, sit, or stand tall with feet hip-width apart, arms extended overhead.
                            • Bend your right elbow and reach your right hand to touch the top middle of your back.
                            • Reach your left hand overhead and grasp just below your right elbow.
                            • Gently pull your right elbow down and toward your head.
                            • Switch arms and repeat.

                            10. Extended Puppy Pose

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                            See the source image
                              • Start on all fours.
                              • Move your arms forward a few inches.
                              • Push your hips up and back halfway toward your heels, or until you feel a deep stretch.
                              • Push through the palms of your hands to keep your arms straight and engaged.
                              • Hold for 30 seconds to 2 minutes.

                              11. Neck Stretch and Release

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                                • Stand with feet shoulder-width apart, or sit down with your back straight and chest lifted.
                                • Drop your right ear to your right shoulder.
                                • To deepen the stretch, gently press down on your head with your right hand.
                                • Hold for 30 seconds to 2 minutes.

                                12. Standing Quad Stretch

                                See the source image
                                  • Stand with your feet together.
                                  • Bend your left knee and use your left hand to pull your left foot toward your butt. Keep your knees together.
                                  • If you need to, put one hand on a wall for balance.
                                  • Squeeze your glutes to increase the stretch in the front of your legs.
                                  • Hold for 30 seconds to 2 minutes.
                                  • Repeat on the other leg.

                                  Conclusion

                                  The key take away here is that consistency with your stretching routine, followed by good quality sleep and lots of hydration, will instantly begin to improve your quality of life. Find which stretches feel the best in your body and add them to a daily routine you can enjoy.

                                  More on How to Become Flexible

                                  Featured photo credit: Scott Broome via unsplash.com

                                  Reference

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