As your leading Denver heart doctor group, you will always hear us stressing to patients the importance of a healthy diet and exercise. Those are the best ways to keep you heart healthy and stave off heart disease. Part of a good exercise program incorporates strength building. Today we will show your some strength building exercises without equipment that you can do at home.
You will find a lot of exercise programs incorporate both cardiovascular work and strength training. The cardio work keeps your heart and metabolism up, while mixing in strength training helps tone, lean, and build stronger muscles. And, the good news is, you do not have to run out and buy resistance bands or dumbbells for any of these exercises. These exercises use your own body weight as resistance to build and tone muscle while burning calories. Or, some of them use common household items like a gym bag and water jugs.
This move works your lower body, particularly your quads and calves. By doing this move, you will help improve balance.
How To Do It
Place your hands at your sides. Stand in a staggered position with your left foot in front of your right foot.
- With your left foot forward, slowly lower your body down as far as you can while keeping your upper body (i.e. your torso) upright. As you get good at this, you rear knee should nearly touch the floor.
- Pause and then push up to your starting position as quickly as you can. When you have completed several reps with your left foot in front, switch and so the same number of reps with your right foot in front.
This move will allow you mimic Olympian speed skaters like Apolo Ohno! It is a multipurpose move that keeps your heart rate up while strengthens your glutes and core muscles through side-to-side motion.
How To Do It
Start by standing on your right foot with your knee slightly bent. Place your left foot just behind your right ankle. Then bend your right knee and lower your body into a partial squat.
- Spring to the left by jumping off your right foot. Land softly on your left foot and bring your right foot behind your left foot as your reach to the floor with your right hand.
- Repeat this move by springing back to your right foot and bringing your left foot behind the right while reaching to the floor with your left hand.
Find some full soup cans or even a partially filled water jug. If you can’t find those items, a couple of filled water bottles will work. Hammer curls work the primary muscle in your arm, the biceps.
How To Do It
Hold the water jug (or a water bottle) in each hand and keep your arms straight by your sides. Keep your wrists in line with your arm.
Slowly contract your biceps and use your forearms to bring the water jugs (or soup cans) upward in a curling motion. When you hand comes into contact with your arm, stop and pause for a moment or two while squeezing your biceps. Then, slowly lower your water jugs back to your sides where you started. Repeat for as many repetitions as needed, perhaps start with 5 and eventually work your way up to 12.
For this one, find a gym bag and fill it with some clothes to give it some weight. If you want more weight in it, you can always add a couple of full water bottles. The overhead press works your triceps, deltoids and traps to strengthen your arms and back.
How To Do It
Start with your feet shoulder width apart. Push out your chest as if you are puffing it out. Then, grab the gym bag by its ends and position it across the front of your shoulders so it is resting against your collar bone. This is your starting position.
Now, squeeze with your glutes and push the bag up in a straight line and hold it over your head. Hold it up for a couple seconds before lowering it back to your shoulders and your collar bone. Do again for up to 12 repetitions.
Oldies but Goodies!
You can never go wrong with:
Push-ups and sit-ups are great muscle builders and you can do them very easily. The push-ups work chest muscles, triceps and shoulders. And, sit ups and crunches focus on ads and your primary core muscles.
How to Use This Information
Staying fit goes a long way to your overall heart health. We have several classes you can take that will help keep you fit, but adding in some strength training that you can do at home every few days can really help boost your fitness, helping make you feel better. If you are looking for a class, be sure to check out our classes and get signed up today!