I’m often asked by women who are reluctant to go to the gym because they’re embarrassed or intimidated how they can get started at home.
Sometimes they’re new to exercise and they want to lose a few pounds before they join a gym. Sometimes it’s purely a confidence-builder; whatever the reason the home is a great place to exercise!
Here are some really simple home-based exercises that you can combine to do in a circuit. This circuit was a part of a programme that I developed for a young mum who wanted to build-up her fitness and muscle tone (what we now understand to be muscle definition!). (As with any exercise, make sure you’re healthy to take part.)
Perform 1 30-second set of each exercise listed, then go back to the start and repeat until you’ve completed 3 – 5 sets of each exercise.
Total circuit time = 3 minutes. Rest when you need to, but try transition to next exercise without a break and push through until you’ve completed all 6 exercises. Rest at the end of each set of circuits for 2 minutes.
It is really important that you keep the intensity high – work really hard and then rest! You will develop muscle tone in your legs, arms and abs and also improve your fitness by doing these circuits regularly. As you get better, the difficulty and type of exercise can be adapted.
- STEP-UPS: Fast-paced step-ups on your bottom stair. Right leg lead.
- LYING LATERAL ABS: Lying on back, knees bent to 90 degrees. Slightly elevate back off floor. Touch right ankle with right hand, return, touch left ankle with left hand. Continuous repetitions.
- STEP-UPS: Fast-paced step-ups on your bottom stair. Left leg lead.
- BENT KNEE PRESS-UPS/STAIR PRESS-UPS: Either bent-knee on floor, or with hands on step (start on 4th step) with feet on the floor. As you get better you can work your way down the stairs. Lower chest to the floor or step and push body straight back up.
- SQUATS: Squat down so upper thighs are parallel to floor, return to standing, straight knee position. Hold arms straight out ahead of you for balance and keep your heels on the floor.
- STATIC BUNNY-HOPS: Fast as you can, in press-up position legs straight-out behind you. Bring both feet up underneath body in single jump-type movement. Hands stay on the floor, hips and knees should bend so your upper thighs are parallel to chest. Kick legs back out behind you. Repeat continuously. If too hard initially, do one leg at a time.