Exercises You Can Do Anywhere
The holidays are supposed to bring some downtime but most of us find ourselves on the go, traveling to see relatives (or hopefully, headed to a relaxing vacation destination). It’s no secret that traveling takes a serious toll on your workout routine. After being crammed in a car or stuck in a seat for hours on an airplane, it’s tempting to flop on the bed when you arrive at your destination, but breaking a sweat is the best way to reenergize and restore mental focus. In most cases, you can find 15-20 minutes to fit in a quick and easy workout.
Mix it up with moves you can do just about anywhere. No equipment necessary.
1. Get your blood flowing with “High Knees” and “Butt Kicks” for 30 seconds each to get started.
2. Amp up your arms with “Triceps Dips” — this exercise is great as it uses only your body weight. All you need is a stabilized chair or bench (the edge of the bathtub works just as well). Aim for two sets of 20 reps.
3. Engage your core with “Side Plank Pushups.” Start with a pushup and rotate to the side by stacking your hips and feet. Raise your arm for a full breath and lower the arm to return to a pushup. Repeat on other side. Try for 2 sets of 15 reps on each side.
4. Raise your heart rate with “Mountain Climbers” – a full body, calorie-burning workout. Start in a pushup position with arms shoulder-width apart. Lift your right leg and raise your knee to your chest (or as close as you can depending on flexibility), return to the starting position and repeat with the left leg. Repeat for 30 seconds and 2 sets. Add on to your time as you build endurance.
5. Move on to your butt and legs with a “Side Lunge” by standing with your feet hips-width apart and extending one leg out to the side by bending your stable leg and reaching your butt back as if to sit on a chair. Repeat the same motion with your other leg for 15 reps and 2 sets.
6. Crank up the core muscles with a Pilates-inspired “Double-Leg Stretch.” Lying on your back, raise both legs to hug shins to your chest. Inhale to lift your head and shoulders off the mat and straighten your legs to reach a 45-degree angle, while extending your arms back beside your ears (your body should resemble the shape of a V). Exhale and lower your arms and legs to hug your shins and return to the starting position. If you feel a strain on your neck, use your arms to support you and focus on the motion of your legs. Repeat for 30 seconds.
7. Stretch it out while keeping the core tight with “Plank to Upward-Facing Dog.” Start in a plank and walk your feet back while lowering down and stretching your arms by moving your chest towards the floor. As you walk your feet back in, move your chest forward between your hands stretching into an upward-facing dog. Repeat for 30 seconds.
8. Twist out the toxins and improve circulation with “Revolved Wide-Legged Standing Forward Fold,” a calming twist that stretches the whole body and helps detoxify the digestive organs, while also soothing the mind and improving full-body coordination. Start in a standing split (with legs as far apart as comfortable) and twist your upper body from the hips, while raising one arm to the ceiling and stabilizing yourself with the other hand on the ground. Push into the heels of your hands and feet. Set your gaze on the thumb of your raised hand and push your hips to the wall behind you, while engaging your lower belly. Hold this pose for 5-10 breaths on each side.
9. If you don’t have time for a full body workout, a headstand or modified form of the inversion will give you a similar effect as it increases circulation through the body, sends nutrients to the skin, rids the body of toxins, and pumps fresh blood from head to toe, boosting your energy levels, while calming the mind. You don't have to be an advanced yogi to stand on your head: use the wall for support and balance or for an even more approachable option, hang your head over the side of the bed. Start by holding this pose for just 10 seconds and gradually add 5 to 10 seconds until you reach 3 to 5 minutes.
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