No-Equipment Exercises You Can Do Anywhere

When the weather is dreary, finding motivation to go to the gym can be a challenge. Add in the fact that many of us are also avoiding germs at gyms, and it’s even harder to think of creative ways to get in shape.

Luckily, certified personal trainer Katelyn Page has a few ideas for you to incorporate at-home – no equipment required!

First off, how often should folks be exercising during their week at home? 

Ideally, 150 minutes a week. So if you want to do a 50 minute class three days a week, you’re golden. Try to vary your workouts for a more well-rounded routine.

What are three strength training exercises you’d recommend for folks who do not have gym equipment at home? 

  1. Squats: Bring your feet a little wider than hip width distance apart with toes and knees pointing forward. Sit low and back. Avoid letting your knees go past your toes. Keep your core tight and press through your foot and squeeze your glutes to standing. Do five full squats to five squats at a half range of motion (all the way down and then half way up). 
  2. A 10 second high-plank hold to a push-up: I always recommend taking a plank or push-up on your knees if you feel any strain in your back. Keep your core tight and pull your belly button up and in towards your spine the whole exercise.
  3. Tricep Kickbacks: Sit low in a chair position with feet together and your weight in your heels. Lean forward 45° and tuck your hips. Bring your hands behind with palms facing in. Squeeze your shoulder blades together and go as high as you can. Bend your elbows and bring your hands to your hips. Repeat five times and then bring your hands back and pulse one inch up and down five times. For a circuit, each exercise for 90 seconds each with a 20 second rest in between. Repeat three times.

What about three types of cardio? 

Jumping jacks, push ups, and burpees. 

For a circuit, do each one 90 seconds with a 20 second rest in-between for one circuit. Repeat as many times as you can. 

What stretches are good for folks hunched at desks or on couches all day?

A quad stretch for your hip flexors, a chest opener for your pecs, and lots of neck rolls and side stretches to relieve some tension in your neck. 

How would you adjust these exercise recommendations for older folks or those with limited ability?

Take an exercise at a half-range of motion rather than a full-range. For example, don’t come down as far for a squat, but only until you feel OK in your knees. For a plank, give yourself an incline by using the couch under your hands and feet on the floor. Or, come onto your elbows to help those wrists. Focus on holds rather than big dynamic movements and try more low-impact options for cardio. For example marching in place.

If you are already fairly fit, how long does it take for you to not exercise before you begin to lose your cardio and strength? 

Everyone is so different that it’s hard to have a clear answer to this question. I would say that when it comes to staying fit, it’s 80% nutrition and 20% exercise. So if you have to prioritize anything at this time, I would prioritize your nutrition first. 

Any other workout tips, tricks or words of encouragement for the readers at home? 

Right now, any movement is good even if it doesn’t include a bicep curl. Get up every hour to move around. Stretch when you feel stiff. You may feel a little out of control right now but you can control when you move and what you eat. Exercise this agency and create a schedule, go to bed at the same time, call your mom. You’ll feel a bit better. 

Through December, Page is offering Actively Northwest readers 25% off her 8-Week Downloadable Workout Guide: STRONG by KPF. Use the code ACTIVELYNW25 when you check out!

Based out of Seattle, Katelyn Page has been teaching private clients for over five years and specializes in a mixture of Yoga, Barre, and Strength-Based classes. Since the quarantine issues were ordered, she has switched to training virtually through live-streaming classes which are currently donation-based to participate. You can find her schedule and learn more at her website, or follow her Instagram for announcements, @katelynpagefitness. 

Images used with permission from Katelyn Page