A few quick exercises to maintain your fitness

Keeping your exercise routine when you're away from home or getting back to your regular gym visits can be difficult. But here are a few quick exercises that you can incorporate into your time away to maintain your fitness.

A few quick exercises to maintain your fitness

Chest lift

  1. Lie face down on the floor with your hands under your chin, your palms down and your elbows pointed to the sides.
  2. With hips pressed to the floor, lift your head, chest and arms a little way off the floor. Pause, then lower.
  3. Try tightening your buttocks as you do this. Stop if your back starts to bother you.

Wall push and clap

  1. Place your hands against a wall or a high tabletop. Move your feet back so your body is angled about 45 degrees from the floor. It should form a straight line from your heels to your head.
  2. Bend your arms and lower yourself until your elbows are bent outward at 90 degrees. Don't let your back arch. Push up as hard as you can, clap your hands once, and return to the starting position before immediately dropping into another repetition.
  3. Keep your core tight throughout this exercise.

One-arm overhead extension

  1. Grasp a dumbbell with your right hand and hold it overhead. Bend your arm toward the middle of your back so that you lower the weight behind your head and your elbow points toward the ceiling.
  2. Slowly extend your arm again, stopping before you lock your elbow into a perfectly straight position. Pause, then lower again.
  3. Repeat for a full set and swap sides.

Split squat

  1. Stand in front of a stable chair, facing away from it. Lift your right leg behind you and rest the top of your foot on the seat of the chair. Keep your arms at your sides.
  2. Slowly bend your left leg until your left thigh is nearly parallel to the floor. As you bend your leg, lift your arms straight in front of you until parallel to the ground. Pause, then return to the starting position. Do not let your back arch.
  3. Complete a set, then swap legs.

For a more intense leg workout, hold dumbbells in your hands and keep them at your sides as you perform this exercise.

Balance ball drops

  1. Lie face up on the floor, arms by your sides. Grasp the balance ball between your feet and ankles and raise your legs toward the ceiling.
  2. Keeping your torso stable and your legs extended, slowly lower the ball toward the floor to 45 degrees (don't arch your back). Pause, then return to the starting position.
  3. To make the move more challenging, put your hands behind your head, then lift only your head and shoulders off the floor and perform the move from that position.

Your abdominals should be tight throughout this exercise and you must not let your back lift off the floor.

Caution: If this exercise bothers your back, don't do it.

Butterfly curls

  1. Stand with your knees slightly bent, holding a pair of dumbbells by your sides with your arms turned so your palms face out as much as comfortably possible.
  2. Keeping your back straight and your elbows tucked close to your sides, slowly curl the weights up toward the outside of your shoulders. Pause, then return to the starting position.

Keep these quick exercises in mind the next time you're away from your usual workout routine to help maintain your fitness.

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