If you are an avid follower of our blog then you may recall an article we shared a few years ago that aimed to demonstrate how you can exercise without going to the gym! This previous article focused largely on different forms of cardio that you can engage in, whereas today we would like to discuss building muscle!
Building and toning your muscles without the use of equipment is entirely possible. This is because you can use your own body weight and gravity to do so.
Chest and Shoulder Muscles
Push-ups are a great way to build muscle in your shoulders and chest. Additionally, this exercise can also help to shape your abs and torso, as well as the triceps and biceps that we will look at later in this article!
If you currently do not feel strong enough to do many push-ups then you can start at a low number and try to increase with each attempt. You may also find that bending your knees and placing them on the floor, instead of holding the normal straight body position, can help you to initially build your strength.
Once you have got the hang of doing push-ups, and feel as though you can do upwards of 20 push-ups in a go with no problems, then it is a good idea to switch things up!
Decline push-ups are a more challenging form of this exercise and all you have to do is elevate your feet off the ground, such as by resting them on a box or exercise ball. Start low and then gradually increase the height at which you elevate your feet from.
Bringing your hands closer together whilst doing push-ups, such as by placing them in a diamond shape, is another way that you can target slightly different muscles during this workout - so don’t forget to mix things up!
The squat exercise is first and foremost great for building muscle in your legs. But, it also has several other fantastic muscle building benefits, such as toning your back and your abs - as well as aiding fat loss.
The squat exercise is referred to as a functional exercise, and this means that this is a movement that you regularly need to do in the world outside of the gym. Regularly engaging in the squat exercise can help to keep the muscles necessary for this action strong and flexible, making it less likely that you will experience an injury and also that your capacity for doing this movement will increase.
You can do the squat exercise anytime, even just at random intervals throughout your day. It is a good idea to warm up before you start this exercise, and a three to four minute session of light cardio is a good choice. Try jumping rope, going for a brisk walk or simply doing some star jumps to get yourself warmed up.
You can then stand with your legs hip-width apart and then bring your hips down as though you are going to sit. As you do so you may find it helpful for your balance if you bring your hands together in front of your chest. Try to keep your back straight. As your hips come down to knee level, you can then return to the start position.
As you progress with this exercise you can choose to hold dumbbells or anything that is weighted in order to make the workout more challenging.
When it comes to ab exercises that you can do at home without any equipment, the plank will always be one of the best choices!
This is a simple technique, but one that has the potential to tone muscles throughout your body. We have already covered this exercise in detail in a previous article and you can click here now to check it out!
Bicep and Tricep Muscles
The biceps and the triceps are the main muscles in the arms. In order to build strength in a sustainable and healthy way it is important to work on both the triceps and the biceps, instead of favouring exercises that target one muscle more than the other.
Dips are an exercise that the majority of people will be able to do in their own homes with the assistance of two chairs. All you need to do is balance your feet on one chair whist you hold yourself up on your hands on the other chair. You should aim to keep your chest up and facing forwards with your back straight. You can then lower yourself down until your elbows are at 90 degrees and then push yourself back up.
Reaching Your Goals
If you feel like the gym is not for you then it is entirely possible to achieve your fitness goals on your own at home. Using the exercises mentioned in this article to get you started, you can kickstart your home workout efforts with no special equipment!