Getting leaner and fitter is everybody’s dream. The underlying reason should be to get stronger. Any crash diet will give you a lean body within a month but that could seriously compromise your strength and reduce your muscle density. A better goal or resolution would be to get stronger in 2016 by staying physically fit, mentally active and generally happy. A good strong body is precursor to a healthy life and a healthy life is the definition of happy life.
Run for 10 minutes. Run 6 days a week for 10 minutes (you could relax on Sunday). Do not lie down or sit on the couch watching TV and eating junk food. Your body needs the stimulus to wake up on time and get out for exercise. Instead of your weekday workout, go for a slow paced relaxing jog. By running for 10 minutes, you warm up each and every muscle group in your body and prepare them for an effective workout. You will get stronger too over a period of time and will be able to run faster. Who knows, this might even motivate you to participate in competitive running contests!
Do 3 sets of 9 squats each. This will take you just about 10 minutes. If you are new to strength training, you could start with 5 squats in 1 set instead of 3 sets of 9 squats. You can also hold your squatting position instead of doing continuous fast paced squats. This will also build your stamina. Conversely, as your stamina improves, you can hold your squatting position from ½ a minute to 1 minute. Stand with your feet at shoulder width distance and raise your arms until they are parallel to the floor. Keep your back and neck straight. The chin must be parallel to the floor. Breathe in and push your hips down making sure you do not jut out your knee forward. Push your hips and buttocks down and as far back as possible until your thighs are parallel to the floor. Once your thighs are parallel to the floor, return to starting position slowly rising and gently swinging your arms down. Do strengthening exercises like these daily for 10 minutes.
Again, if you are new to strength training, start with only 2 pushups. You can slowly increase the number to 8. 8 push-ups should take you about 10 minutes initially but you can still try to do 1 push-up a minute for 10 minutes. Do not forget to take a break on Sunday. Slow leisurely exercise is all you do on Sunday.
You can do crunches right at home without ever getting a gym subscription or buying expensive equipment. Lie on your back on the mat looking at the ceiling. Neck should be in line with your spinal cord. Rest your feet on the mat by bending your knees. Slowly lift your shoulders off the mat keeping your neck straight. While lifting your shoulders off the mat do not lift your back. In order to achieve this, cross your arms across your chest or at the back of your head. If you get cramps while doing crunches, you are either doing it too fast or you are not breathing. Remember to always inhale and exhale. Never hold your breath while doing any of the strengthening exercises. In fact, do not hold your breath at all unless you are doing breathing exercises.
If you have dumbbells, well and good! But you can do lunges even without holding dumbbells. If you do not possess any strength training equipment, do not despair; there is still a way. Stand with your feet hip width apart and take a stride forward with your right leg and bend your left leg till your right thigh is parallel to the floor. Get back up and repeat with left leg. Do at least 3 lunges a day. You can increase the number to 5. If you do possess a pair of dumbbells, hold them parallel to the floor when you do the lunges.
6. Triceps dips
Use a wooden chair or the dining table chair to do triceps dips. Sit at the edge of the chair and rest your palms at the edge. Slowly slide off the chair and down putting all your weight on your arms with palms still pressed to the chair. Once you sit on the floor, come back up slowly all the time using your arms to support your weight.
If you always bunked your gym class and are completely new to the idea of exercise, it may not be a good idea to start off running and doing strengthening exercises for 10 minutes each. Start with a jog and do 2 each of push-ups, squats, crunches, lunges, and triceps dips. Walk briskly for 10 minutes on the first day and increase the speed every couple of days until you are running comfortably. Then you can increase the time you run as well if that makes you feel lighter and stronger which it will by the end of a month. Do not hold your breath and remember to relax after your run and also after your exercise.
We hope these 6 exercises help you get stronger. Remember: consistency is the key here and you must establish a routine to achieve your fitness goals.