At its core (pun intended), strength training is essentially two things: movement of any weight against some type of resistance or counterforce and doing a little more than you did the last time (adding a touch more weight or doing one more rep).
Finding time for a 20 – 30 minutes strength training session a few times a week can do great things for your overall health and wellness.
The Hype Behind Strength Training
You can use your own body weight as your force of resistance, or you can use a machine or weights to act as your counterforce. That’s why strength training is a very popular approach to a fitness regiment. You don’t have to go to a gym to strength train. It’s very achievable in the comfort of your own home – with or without equipment.
There are five main fundamental benefits of starting a basic strength training routine today.
- Increase muscle mass
- Stronger bones
- Joint flexibility
- Weight control and toning
- Improved balance
4 Strength Training Exercises You Can Do Right Now
Think strength training sounds like the right workout routine for you? Here are four simple strength training exercises you can start today – your body will thank you for it!
Push ups are ridiculously good for you, and you can do them anywhere at any time. You want to drop and give me 10 outside the grocery store? Go for it. You might look a little strange but you’ll also be a little stronger. Push ups are an excellent strength training exercise that incorporates your total body with a particular emphasis on your core and upper body.
If push ups are a challenge, start small. Do five push ups in the morning. When that starts to feel a little too easy for you, add another five. Increase or decrease reps as needed (you know your body best), and if you start to get really good, you can always add dumbbells into your push up routine.
Much like push ups, planks are a total body workout that incorporates nearly every muscle and uses your total body as resistance.
To do a basic plank, assume a push up position, and then hold that position for as long as you can. If you’re new to planks, you should try for one minute. If one minute seems too long, try for 30 seconds. You can also rest on your forearms, to make it a bit easier, and still maintain the plank position.
Work to increase your time. Planks are tough, but so good for you. You’ll build muscle tone and increase your endurance. Once you’ve mastered a basic plank, there are other ways to make planks more challenging. And again, like push ups, planks can be done anywhere at any time making it an extremely efficient and convenient exercise.
Looking to whip that booty back in shape? Start squatting…now. Squats use every muscle in your lower body (quads, hamstrings, glutes, core).
To do a basic squat, keep your feet shoulder width apart and lean forward slightly. Tighten your core, keep your chest up, and neck neutral, bend your knees and push your hips back as if you’re going to sit in a chair.
As you bend, bring your arms straight out in front of you. When you hit about a 90 degree angle, come back up into standing position and rest your arms at your sides. If this feels too difficult, you can always begin doing squats against a flat surface (like the wall of your bedroom or home gym). If it feels too easy, you can add more reps or add a kettlebell or dumbbell into the mix.
If you have even one stair in your house, you can start doing dips today. If you have a small bench or small chair, you can also start doing dips today.
Here’s how to do it. Sit on your chair or bench with your arms at your side and your feet flat on the floor, hip distance apart.
Position your hands so that your palms are down beside your hips. Your fingers should grip the front of the chair seat.
Move your torso forward off the chair with your arms extended. Your buttocks should hover over the floor and your knees should be slightly bent.
Your heels should touch the floor a few inches in front of your knees.
Breathe in as you slowly lower your body, hinging at the elbows until each forms a 90-degree angle. Breathe out as you push up to your starting position with your arms fully extended.
Put In The Work, Get The Results – Now!
There are no excuses! Strength training offers you so many ways to workout your total body, and you can do it right now! You don’t need extra equipment or a fancy gym membership. You can take control of your health and wellness today. Start small, set your goals, and get going! Need help getting started on your fitness journey? I’m here for you. My workouts are quick and deliver visible results in just 3 weeks. Learn More.