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When it’s chilly and frosty and you start shivering at the very thought of stepping outside your toasty home, how can you feel motivated enough to go for a run in your favourite park, or walking all the way to the gym down the road? While snuggling under the covers with at least 5 layers on will be the only thing you’d want to do, what about all that winter weight that’s going to catch up with you soon? So it’s too cold to step outside for your workout – make the best of the space at home for your daily exercises.
10 Simple Exercises You Can Do At Home to Burn the Winter Weight!
No sophisticated equipment, no need to cut out a major chunk of your schedule to work these in – here are some simple exercises you can try, especially if you’re a beginner!
For any major workout that you work up a sweat for, it’s important to note that warming up before and stretches afterwards are essential to avoid any risks of injuries. Jog or run in place or do a couple of stretches to work up a light sweat, and get to your exercises!
1. Press-ups or Push-ups
You won’t need any introduction to this exercise – you just need the floor and your able self! Multiple muscles are required for this exercise, so you’re sure to be giving yourself a good workout. Get into position by placing your hands on the floor, shoulder-width apart. Ensure that your back is flat in this position. Balance yourself on your toes and start lowering your body slowly towards the floor; when you’re an inch away, push yourself up with enough force. Repeat, but remember to not go overboard with force! While there isn’t an exact number that you need to follow (especially if you’re a beginner), 3 sets of 10 reps would be great. However, this does depend on your stamina – increase or decrease depending on your ability.
Stay in the press-ups position for this one! For this exercise, you need to balance your weight on your forearms while still keeping your back flat. Your abs and glutes need to be firm, and the same goes for your hips – don’t let them sag while you hold this position. 30 seconds at a time should do for beginners, but if you’re able to stay in position for 120 seconds, you’re in good form for sure!
3. Getting in and Out of a Chair
Here’s a version of squats you will like! Grab a chair and simply repeat the process of sitting on it and getting up over and over. Several muscles get activated in this process; your tummy requires to be tightened each time you sit, and you will feel like you’ve worked out once you feel the burn in your limbs! Once you’re done, sit back in the chair and relax!
4. Walking Up and Down the Stairs
The humble staircase stays in wait of the day you’ll finally ditch the elevator for it! Walk up and down a few flights of stairs within your building or your home to really work your legs and glutes. It’s important that you depend on the hand railing if you feel like you’re losing stability in your knees after a point. If you want to increase the intensity of your workout, you can also carry a heavy object with you while walking. Keeping at this exercise for 10 to 15 minutes daily will definitely help you burn plenty of calories – approximately 10 per upward flight of stairs!
5. Mock Jump-rope
Back to a school-day favourite, but without the rope (although, skipping rope is a great workout too)! All you have to do is stand on a firm surface and start jumping on the balls of your feet (lightly, and make sure your knees are bent softly). Mimic holding a skipping rope with a short rope length, such that you place your hands almost close to your armpits. Keep repeating till you work up a sweat. Jumping rope is also a great way to warm up before a big workout session. For beginners, start off with about 50 reps in 30 seconds. Perform 3 or 4 sets (with sufficient rest period in between) lasting for about 30 to 90 seconds. As you advance, you can increase the intensity and duration of the reps. If you do have a skipping rope, don’t hesitate in using one!
6. Sitting Down and Standing Up
Sounds silly, right? Think again! Spread out a comfortable mat on the floor and simply sit down. Then stand up. Repeat, and speed it up! You’ll be surprised to find out how much you’re panting! Both these actions, while performed in succession and on repeat, require the muscles of your body to cooperate fully. It adds to your strength and actually prepares you for any gym exercises you’ll be planning in the future. 3 sets of 10 reps each (with sufficient rest periods between each set) would be apt for beginners.
7. Jumping Jacks
Stand with your arms at your sides, then jump with your feet out and your arms meeting over your head. Bring your feet back together and your arms at your sides again. Apart from being super convenient to do (you could break out into a set right now while reading this article too!), jumping jacks are a surefire way to burn some calories. Someone weighing 75-80 kilos can easily burn 30 calories with 250 jumping jacks – sure that sounds like a lot of work, but once you get to jumping, you realise that you’re doing more than you thought you would! Put in some effort to do it vigorously to really burn that fat!
8. Shadow Boxing
Fight off a pretend intruder and get a good workout out of it! Ball your fists, keep bouncing around on your toes, dip down to avoid an incoming attack, stretch out to administer a couple of punches, and just have loads of fun! Just make sure that your enthusiastic squeals and threats don’t confuse your neighbours at all!
9. Lower Back Curl
We often underestimate how much our back needs to be in shape – not just for appearance sake, but because our back is our sturdy pillar of support, and needs to stay that way! Work your back with this exercise – lie face-down on the floor with your arms by your sides. Raise your chest upwards slowly; arms down, head up! Lower yourself back down once you’ve reached the furthest you can go high. A couple of reps should do the trick, and relieve you of the back pain that winter can sometimes bring with it!
10. Household Chores
We almost take it for granted how simple chores, like washing the dishes, doing the laundry, sweeping the house, and so on, can actually help us lose weight! Done rigorously and daily, all these different tasks can easily help you burn over 100 calories per hour depending on the activity. Keep aside the automated cleaning aids for the time being; pick up that mop and sponge, and get to cleaning!
Working out at home in the winter is surely a better option than braving the cold outside just to satisfy your exercise quota! Now that you know you don’t need fancy equipment or loads of space to exercise, no more skipping workouts, just skipping rope – and other simple exercises!