For some, the winter months present somewhat of a challenge when it comes to keeping up with a regular workout routine. Not only are the holidays a busy time of the year, but sometimes the decreased amount of daylight and cold weather can put a damper on your desire to exercise, too.
An easy way to overcome these obstacles, though, is to make exercise more accessible. In other words, instead of trying to convince yourself to get to the gym or putting a ton of effort into bundling up for a cold weather run, simply find new ways to get a great workout in at home.
And because in this case easier is probably better, (and by easier we mean simpler—you won’t have to skimp out on exercise intensity) fitness trainer and certified nutritionist Franci Cohen suggests the following at-home, equipment-free workouts that you can break out on cold winter days.
- Equipment-Free Exercises You Can Do At Home-
The Power Squat "Can-Can"
“If you are looking for an inexpensive and convenient way to exercise when you simply don't want to battle the cold weather outside, then try this exercise,” says Cohen. “Go into the kitchen and pull out two cans of beans, soup or whatever. Use the cans as weights to perform everything from jumping jacks to burpees. The added weight of the cans will add a kick to your indoor routine, and the variety will definitely bring a smile to your face!”
What to do:
- Grab 2 cans from your kitchen cupboard. 16oz cans of beans, tomato sauce or anything else that you have handy will do just fine!
- Stand with feet together holding one can in each hand.
- Power down into a squat position, opening your stance so that your feet are a bit wider than hip-width distance apart. Try to keep your weight shifted toward your rear, and be careful not to hyperextend your knees past your toes.
- As you drop down into your power squat, place each can on the floor (one near your left foot and one near your right).
- Jump back up from your squat (WITHOUT the cans) bringing feet back to starting position, and reaching your hands overhead to the ceiling.
- Repeat your power squat, but this time PICK UP your cans as you jump up from the squat, and reach your hands (cans in hands) overhead to the ceiling.
- Repeat the sequence 30 times.
“This move juxtaposes toning and cardio producing a sculpting and calorie-blasting effect that really targets both the hamstrings, quads and glutes while chiseling the arms and shoulders to perfection,” says Cohen.
MODIFICATION: “Eliminate the power element, and simply squat down and up while dropping and picking up the cans. If the cans are too much of a challenge, they can be eliminated as well or swapped for empty water bottles; whatever works for you,” Cohen explains.
Floor Bridge Move from The Couch
Cohen says that this sequence adds some cardio in order to keep the heart rate elevated and burn more calories.
What to do:
- Move the coffee table aside so you have plenty of room.
- Lay down on the floor and put one foot on the edge of the couch and keep the other elevated.
- Do 10 to 12 floor bridges on each leg, thrusting your pelvis to the ceiling. This will work your glutes and hamstrings.
- While you’re already down on the floor, keep your legs on the couch and do 12 crunches. Then bring your feet down under the couch do 12 more crunches this way.
- For a higher intensity, add intervals of cardio. Try high knees jogging in place with couch toe-touches for 30 seconds.
- Get down into push-up position with feet elevated on the edge of the couch and do 10 plank-pushups.
- Rest for 1 minute and repeat these exercises 2 more times.