It seems like everybody is a member of a gym nowadays, especially since there are so many gyms to choose from. So if you are not one of those who falls under the category of a "gym junkie," don't fret: you're not alone! There are many people out there who stay away from gyms, and for various reasons. It could be due to financial reasons, time constraints, or just plain awkwardness. The gym can be a very intimidating place, especially to those who like their privacy. So here are 5 exercises that can be performed in the comfort of your own home and without the use of any equipment other than a pair of sneakers and a floor.
1. Jogging in place: Jogging in a stationary position gets the heart rate up and is a great warm up for more intense exercises to come. To make it more intense, you can press your arms overhead while bringing your knees high towards your chest.
2. Jumping jacks: Jump by spreading your feet out and bring them back together while your arms go up in a circular motion and back down. To make these more intense you can turn them into plyometric jumping jacks (pylo jacks). When jumping into the "feet apart" position, slow it down and go deep into a squat. Jump again to bring your feet back together and keep repeating.
3. Squat jumps: Go down into a squat position, and jump up as high as you can landing back in that same squat. For more intensity, do frog jumps. All you have to do for frog jumps is to go lower and deeper into your squat so you hands can touch the floor. Make sure when you land, you land softly on your feet to avoid putting additional pressure onto your knee joints.
4. Squat thrusts (burpees): Squat down and put your hands on the floor. Then jump your feet back so you're in a plank position. Jump the feet back to your hands and jump up off the floor and repeat. This is a difficult and taxing exercise so if you need to lighten the intensity, just step your feet back and forth one at a time instead of jumping them back and forth. You can also lighten the intensity by standing back up instead of jumping up. If however, you want to add intensity, do a push-up after jumping your legs back into the plank position.
5. Mountain climbing: In a push-up position, run your knees in and out. To add intensity, you can combine these with push-ups and/or squat thrusts. If you happen to have paper plates or towels around, you can put those under your feet and "glide" your feet back and forth instead of running them.
NOTE: All these exercises get the heart rate up, are taxing on the joints and require proper execution. Make sure you get medical clearance before trying any of these exercises, and/or if you are starting any new workout regimen. If you feel abnormal pain or discomfort, stop and contact your health care provider.