What Are Body Weight Workouts And How Can You Benefit?
Body weight workouts are high-rep, progression-based training exercises to increase flexibility, advance your overall strength, and help you to develop a better sense of balance. This type of training does not require free weights, as you are literally using the weight of your own body to administer the resistance. They are also super efficient and save you time from going to the gym.
Can I do body weight workouts at home?
The truly ingenious thing about these exercises is that they can be done anywhere at any time. As long as you have solid ground and motivation, you can do these simple workouts to burn fat, increase your heart rate, and start building muscle. Working out at home not only benefits your wallet, but it is extremely helpful for those of us who may be just starting out fitness-wise, and who would rather avoid the crowded gym.
What kind of body weight workouts can I do to build muscle?
There are many simple exercise routines that you can do to build muscle. Burpees, planks-to-push-ups, wall sits, and crunches are just a few of the many simple (and extremely effective) activities that you can use to create a new workout routine or to implement into an existing routine.
Body weight workouts are effective in muscle-building for several reasons. This is all because they allow for a more natural range of motion than what you might find with free weights, body weight exercises require a hellacious amount of endurance, and quite often, you are using more than one muscle group in order to complete a specific set.
What should a typical body weight exercise routine look like?
Your body weight workout should be prefaced with about three minutes of light cardio to get your blood flowing and your heart rate up. You can begin with a light run (whether it be on a treadmill or around the block), jumping jacks, or even jogging up and down your staircase for a few minutes.
You should always perform 2-4 sets per circuit and rest for about a minute before beginning each set (and it’s important to start with something just above your comfort level, and keep progressing as you start to become more acclimated to the workout).
Your circuits can be changed up as often as you would like; many people prefer to focus on certain muscle groups on specific days of the week.
Here is an example of what a typical workout may look like on a given day:
- 50 jumping jacks
- 25 air squats
- 15 pushups
- 30 walking lunges (15 per side)
- 30 bicycle crunches
- 1 minute plank
And yet another day’s workouts may look just a little differently:
- 20 air squats
- 15 burpees
- 1 minute plank
- 1 minute of mountain climbers
- 10 pushups
- 1 minute wall squat
- 20 lunges (10 per side)
As you can see, all of these workouts simply use what you already have available to you at this very moment: your own body!
What sort of body weight training program should I be looking for?
There are endless possibilities as far as different body weight training programs to be considering. Many personal trainers and gyms will offer guidance to newcomers looking to get into better shape, but a lot of people can’t necessarily afford the luxury of getting one-on-one time with a professional. It’s important to know the answers to the following before you throw yourself head-first into a training program:
- Am I injury-free/ healthy enough for this activity?
- If you are considering starting any new strength-training routine, you should consult with your doctor first.
- Do I understand what good form looks like?
- If you do an exercise the wrong way repeatedly, you could end up causing your body some damage. It’s a good idea to watch videos and read instructions carefully before starting a new circuit. It is also helpful to do new routines in front of a mirror or with a buddy to ensure you are doing what you should be.
- Am I giving myself the proper amount of rest?
- Believe it or not, rest is just as important to an exercise regime as is the exercising itself. You should always give yourself about a minute between sets to rest, and it is recommended that you give yourself one rest day per week to allow your body to heal. Plenty of water, protein, and sleep will do wonders in aiding your body weight workout routine.
- I’ve been doing this for weeks and haven’t seen results yet. What now?
- Persevere. They say that if you focus on results you will never change, but if you focus on change you will get results. Drink more water. Rest. Do more cardio. Increase your reps slightly. Move faster. Push harder. Whatever you do, do not give up.
One Last Word About Getting Ripped With Body Weight
It’s easy to excuse your low activity level when you don’t have money for the gym or for fancy workout equipment to use at home. These workouts require nothing but the determination to better yourself.
You will need a healthy, clean diet if you are serious about getting ripped. Let alone shedding fat with just body weight. You will need to follow a clean, healthy, balanced diet and if you want to drop pounds, you will need to take in less than what you consume. What I mean is that your end results will be determined mostly by how well you eat. Eat too much bad food and suffer the consequences.
It’s up to you, and no one else, to make this happen! I n these cases I always recommend adopting a Paleo style eating habit during the time you are working out to make the most of it. No more excuses, it’s time to start losing fat and building muscle now!
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