When you want to get in a productive workout but are pressed for time, you need to choose exercises that are effective. There are many exercises out there and it can be difficult to know what to do to get the best results. Compound bodyweight exercises are a wise choice because they can be done anywhere, and incorporate multiple muscle groups for increased calorie burn. Squats, push ups, and crunches should be staples in your workout routine. Combined, they can help work almost every muscle group in your body and can increase results in your weight loss journey. Learn how to properly complete each exercise with good form so you can stay safe while training.
Squats are a staple exercise because they hit so many muscle groups at once. There are many variations of squats. Some use only your bodyweight, and others use barbells, dumbbells, or kettlebells for added resistance. You can also work the muscles in slightly different ways be altering your foot placement.
For starters, focus on learning how to properly complete a basic bodyweight squat. This will work your glutes, quadriceps, hamstrings, and hips, which comprise the majority of the large muscle groups in your lower body.
When squatting, start with your feet roughly hip distance apart. Slowly lower your hips back and down as if you were sitting into a chair. Everyone’s range of motion will be slightly different, but try to make a 90 degree angle with your knees and get your thighs parallel to the ground. As you lower yourself down, check to make sure that your knees are not collapsing inward and that you can still see your toes when you look down. When you are ready to come back up squeeze your glutes and press your hips up and forward.
2. Push Ups
Push ups are another exercise that is extremely effective in boosting your weight loss efforts. They activate muscles in your chest, shoulders, arms, back, and abdominals, making them a fantastic upper body exercise.
To properly complete a push up, start with your hands slightly wider than your shoulder and your feet behind you. You should be in a plank position. If you need to modify the exercise, you can bend your legs and touch your knees to the ground. As you go through the motion, think of your body as a straight line. Keep your hips lifted up so your back doesn’t arch. Make sure you are not sinking into your shoulders and your chest is lifted. Begin to bend your arms, keeping them tucked in close to your sides. Lower yourself down until your upper arms are parallel with the floor and your chest is almost touching the ground. Keeping your core tight, press into your hands and straighten your arms to bring yourself back to a starting position.
Finally, crunches can be added to your routine to train your abdominal muscles. Having a strong core will help improve your strength and stamina in other exercises, and will also help to relieve pressure and strain on your back.
Start off by laying on your back with your legs bent and your feet touching the ground. Bring your hands behind your head and rest them at the base of your skull. Your head should be resting loosely in your hands. (Don’t pull up with your hands as it will put pressure on your neck.) Check to make sure that your chin is lifted up off your chest. Envision that you are holding an orange or a tennis ball in between your chin and your chest and maintain that distance as you move through the exercise. Contract your abs and envision that your belly button is being pulled down toward your spine as you inhale. Slowly raise your head and shoulders up off the ground as you exhale. Lower yourself down slowly as you inhale again.
Use Squats, Push Ups, and Crunches Consistently for Weight Loss
Squats, push ups, and crunches should be staples in any exercise routine. They are extremely effective and can be done anywhere. These 3 exercises, when done in intervals consistently through the week, will increase results in your weight loss journey. Start adding them into your routine 3-4 times per week for best results.