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Can I Get a Great Workout Without Any Equipment?

Written on July 10, 2012 at 9:59 am , by

Hello! My name is Courtney and I’m the author behind the blog Sweet Tooth, Sweet Life, which was recently given a Fitterati award for Best Personal Trainer Blog. I’m a 28-year old personal trainer and former elementary school teacher (you can read a bit more about that here if you’d like). I live up in Upstate, NY with my husband and high school sweetheart, Jay, and have lived here all of my life. When I’m not training, I’m most likely blogging, in the kitchen, or spending time with some of my favorite friends and family.

I often get emails from readers asking whether or not you really can get in a great workout without any equipment, and the answer is YES! Bodyweight exercises are some of my absolute favorite types of exercise for a number of reasons. They not only tend to be a bit easier on the joints, but they also allow for a more natural range of motion, thus effectively improving your overall fitness.

So what exercises should you do?

Here’s a few basics to try out, even if you’re stuck at your desk at work:

  • Chair Squats (don’t sit back down completely – use the chair as a guide)
  • Push ups (if you’re at your desk, use it! The farther away your legs are from the desk, the tougher the move)
  • Chair Crunch (keep contracting those abs and draw in that belly button)
  • Alternating Lunges (switch it up by doing some lunges side to side and other front to back)
  • Chair Dips (the farther you walk the feet out, the tougher the move)
  • Calf Raises (place a sturdy book right under those feet and lift up and down)
  • Wall Sit (hold your back against a wall with knees bent at 90 degrees and keep those abs tight – hold your arms out for some shoulder toning too)

If you’re not afraid to get a little sweaty, try kicking it up a notch with some more intense, bodyweight-only exercises:

  • Tuck Jumps
  • Squat Jumps
  • Ice Skaters
  • Butt Kicks
  • Burpees
  • Planks
  • Reverse Crunches
  • Supermans
  • Jumping Jacks
  • Mountain Climbers

Who says you need all those bulky dumbbells and weight machines, right?