In light of being back to writing on a blog, I wanted to share one of the things I give the most credit to in helping me perform better this semester (Jan-May 2015): a simple bodyweight workout I did near daily. Doing this was short and simple enough I could do it every day, at home, and with minimal equipment or starting cost. That meant I had little excuse to skip out. In turn, I ended up with a slightly better body, better confidence (corny doesn’t make it not true!), and also more energy.
I also ended up with a slight tendency to marvel at the ability to just move my muscles and celebrate the freedom that came with it, but that’s a little more woo-woo, “feel the energy, maaan” type thing. Your mileage may vary. I just know I take a little more pleasure in the simple act of literally moving these days, and I kind of like it!
Here it is, this not-miracle-cure-but-pretty-helpful-thing-I-did:
- Decline pressup – up to 15 reps
- One-leg squat – up to 15 reps
- Desk row – up to 15 reps, same number as pressups
- Hand walkout – up to 10
- Glute raise/bridge – 30 or more
- Repeat twice more!
Decline pressup: put your feet up on something so that they’re higher than your head (so you’re slanted downwards towards the ground headfirst) and do a basic pushup.
One-leg squat: whether you can do a pistol squat (one leg extended straight out in front), a Bulgarian squat (with or without weight), or need a support, just squat down on one leg and come back up.
Desk row: move your computer chair out of the way. Lay on your back underneath, in the little desk cavern where your legs go when you’re sitting. Reach up and grab the edge of your desk (make sure it’s sufficiently heavy or anchored!) and pull your torso to the desk. It’s functionally similar to a barbell row, but inverted, and you’re moving your own weight instead of the bar. To help increase the effectiveness, pinch your shoulderblades together to pull yourself up, instead of using only your arms.
Hand walkout: like using an ab roller or ab wheel, without the roller/wheel.
Glute bridge: make sure you’re raising your pelvis by clenching your ass cheeks, not using your legs or back. To make sure you’re using the right muscles: sit in a chair with decent posture, and raise yourself an inch or so by squeezing your butt, and making sure you’re not using your arms or legs.
Repeat twice (or more, if you want), and enjoy!