Stay Home and Get In Shape with this Beginner Workout
If you’re just starting out on your fitness journey, you’re likely suffering from information overload: too many experts, too many Instagram feeds, too many hucksters clamoring for clicks and cash.
To the uninitiated, fitness can appear complicated—but the major principles are simple: Work your muscles. Get your heart rate up. Stretch. Refuel, rest, repeat.
Nowhere in that list does it say to pursue fitness in a specific place, wearing any special brand of apparel, using any particular equipment. That’s good news if you’re stuck at home for any reason, or can’t make it to a local park, or simply don’t like the gym. There’s no reason you can’t reach any fitness goal, no matter how lofty, without leaving your home.
Below are seven moves that can become your first at-home workout. Perform them in the order they appear. If an exercise requires dumbbells, select the heaviest pair that will allow you to complete all of your sets and reps with good form.
- Lie on your back with your knees bent and feet flat, holding a pair of dumbbells above your chest.
- Keeping your core braced and your elbows close to your body (i.e., not flared), lower the dumbbells until your upper arms touch the floor.
- Pause, and then push the weights back up to the starting position.
- Do 3 sets of 8 to 12 reps.
- Stand tall, holding a pair of dumbbells at arm’s length by your sides. This is the starting position.
- Keeping your chest up, back straight, and shoulders back, place your left foot on a bench or other sturdy, stable knee-height surface that can support your weight, and push up with your left leg until it’s straight (keep your right foot elevated).
- Pause, and then lower your body back to the starting position under control.
- Repeat the movement, this time stepping up with your right foot.
- Continue alternating legs with each rep, performing 3 sets of 12 to 16 reps.
- Holding a light resistance band, lie on your stomach with your arms extended overhead, chest and arms lifted off the floor, and palms facing down. This is your starting position.
- Keeping both arms straight, trace a half-circle with your right arm, extending it directly out to the side and down toward your right thigh. Your left arm should remain straight overhead.
- Reverse the move, slowly returning to the starting position.
- Repeat with your left arm.
- Continue alternating sides with each rep, performing 3 sets of 12 to 16 reps.
- Don’t have resistance bands? Perform the dumbbell pullover(either on a bench or on the floor) instead.
- Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart and parallel, holding a pair of dumbbells in front of your thighs, palms facing you.
- Draw your shoulders back, unlock your knees and engage your core as you slowly hinge at your hips, sending your butt back.
- Maintaining your lower back’s natural arch, lower the weights until your torso is nearly parallel to the floor. Keep your head neutral and the weights close to your body throughout the movement.
- When you can’t descend further without rounding your back (you should feel a deep stretch in your hamstrings), pause, and push your hips forward to return to the starting position.
- Assume a push-up position with your feet together, core braced, body straight from head to heels, and hands in line with and slightly wider than your shoulders.
- Keeping your back flat and butt down, lift your right foot off the floor and draw your right knee toward your chest, tapping the floor with your toes.
- Return your right foot to the starting position and repeat with your opposite leg.
- That’s one rep. Do three sets of 15 to 20 reps.
- Stand tall with your feet hip-width apart and your arms at your sides, holding a dumbbell in each hand.
- Keeping your core braced and back straight, raise your arms to your sides until they’re level with your shoulders (your palms should face down at the top of the move.
- Pause, and then return to the starting position.
- Do 3 sets of 8 to 12 reps.
- Assume a push-up position, but with your weight on your forearms instead of your hands (your elbows should be directly beneath your shoulders).
- Squeeze your glutes and engage your core to lock your body into a straight line from head to heels.
- Hold this position for as long as you can (up to 90 seconds). Repeat three to four times, resting one minute between sets.
Take it to the next level!
If you enjoyed kick-starting your fitness journey with this workout, you’ll love the workouts and programs in the Openfit member library. We have programs for all fitness levels, including:
- Rough Around The Edges – A team of professional stuntwomen guide you through 30 days of workouts that include cardio, MMA conditioning, strength training, and dance to help you become fierce, empowered, and fighting fit.
- Xtend Barre – Sculpt a lean, long, dancer’s physique with Andrea Rogers’ signature barre series.
- T-Minus 30 – This program was designed to help anyone get in shape for a Tough Mudder, but you don’t need to have an obstacle course race in your future to benefit from its total-body workouts. Get lean, strong, tough, and ripped with this comprehensive program designed by one of Tough Mudder’s top athletes.