One of the top five New Years’ Resolutions every year is to lose weight. While I would recommend changing this to “Get Healthy” versus losing weight, it is understandable why this is on the list after a period of increase in heavy foods during the holiday season and colder temperatures leading to fewer outdoor activities. You don’t need to spend a lot of money on an exercise program or equipment; you can do exercises with your body weight on your time.
Any carpeted place can be a place for yoga. Check YouTube for free yoga sessions and begin. It really is that simple. Sit cross-legged with your back straight and take deep breaths. Taking a moment of calm prior to any activity is important for mindfulness. Yoga isn’t just an exercise but also promotes mindfulness for stress management and encourages the maintenance and development of flexibility and strength.
This exercise can be escalated over time to ensure a continued challenge. Start with planks on knees initially and graduate to up on hands or down on elbows once up on toes. Add rocking up and down/side to side for more engagement of the core and shoulders.
Start with Sumo or regular squats. Over time, increase the depth and frequency of the squats. Add squat jumps once more attuned to squats. When jumping, make sure to land softly, slightly bending the knees to avoid jarring the knees.
Add variety to the plank but lift one leg at a time to the chest. Start off slow, but increase over time the repetitions or time period doing this. It is a good cardio exercise if you maintain this for a period of time.
Another addition to planks, stay in plank position and, while maintaining core strength, tap the opposite shoulder with the hand. Work on not rocking while doing this to increase core strength in addition to shoulder stability
Not everyone’s favorite, but it can be mixed up in various ways. Take one step back to get both knees at 90 degrees. Then step together and take one step back with the other leg. If this is a new exercise, start slow but increase speed over time. Start with doing 10-20 on each leg and increase the number completed, or do it for 30-60 seconds at a time. Eventually, it won’t be as hard, and you will be looking for new ways to increase the difficulty.
Add an extra challenge to the lunge with the curtsy lunge. Instead of lunging with the leg straight back, the leg stepping back steps at a diagonal, and both knees lower into a “curtsy”. Add a hop at the top of the lunge for an extra challenge.
Maintaining a plank, but with the legs bent upward – not quite at a mountain climber, but in a “bear” position. Maintain this for 30 seconds, eventually for 60 seconds and longer. You can also hop back and forth from straight plank to bear plank to add variety to planks.
It’s a whole-body workout. Begin standing shoulder-width apart, squat, then move to the plank by kicking your feet behind you. Do a push-up, and once completed, jump your legs up to a squat position to jump straight up with arms overhead. Do as many of these as possible in one minute and rest for 20-30 seconds. It will get your heart rate up as well as engage your core.
Burpee with Mountain climber
Needing more of a challenge? Add a mountain climber when in plank position during the burpee.
Stay budget-friendly without adding expenses after the holidays. Bonus that you are not adding literal weight to your moving load with these exercises to keep you healthy.