Home Fitness for Intermediates

Exercise strengthens your heart and improves your circulation. The increased blood flow raises the oxygen levels in your body. This helps lower your risk of heart diseases such as high cholesterol, coronary artery disease, and heart attack. Regular exercise can also lower your blood pressure and triglyceride levels.


Exercise can help prevent excess weight gain or help maintain weight loss. When you engage in physical activity, you burn calories. The more intense the activity, the more calories you burn.


Regular trips to the gym are great, but don't worry if you can't find a large chunk of time to exercise every day. Any amount of activity is better than none at all. To reap the benefits of exercise, just get more active throughout your day — take the stairs instead of the elevator or rev up your household chores. Consistency is key.


Here are some exercises that you can easily practice at home at any time.


Complete 2 sets of 10 to 15 reps of each exercise below, then move on to the next after 1 minute of rest.


[1] Single-leg bridge

Activate your core and posterior chain (a fancy term for the backside of your body) with a bridge. This is a great exercise to use as a warm-up.



Directions:

  1. Lie on your back with your knees bent, feet flat on the floor, and your arms extended by your sides.

  2. Lift your L foot off the ground while keeping your R leg bent. Keeping you L leg straight on the air.

  3. Pushing through your R foot and bracing your core, raise your bottom off the ground until your hips are fully extended, squeezing your glutes at the top,

  4. Slowly return to the starting position and complete the same number of reps on the other side.


[2] Squat

Squat to strengthen your legs and core, which will make everyday movements easier. Starting with a chair underneath you will help you master proper form.



Directions:

  1. Stand with feet a little wider than hip width, toes facing front.

  2. Drive your hips back— Bend your knees while keeping your upper body as straight as possible, as if you were lowering yourself onto a seat behind you.

  3. Sit into a squat position while still keeping your heels and toes on the ground, chest up and shoulders back. Tighten your stomach muscles.

  4. Strive to eventually reach parallel, meaning knees are bent to a 90-degree angle.

  5. Press into your heels and straighten legs to return to a standing upright position.

[3] Pushup

Push-ups are one of the best exercises to work your pec muscles—both your pectoralis major (the larger, fan-shaped chest muscle) and your pectoralis minor (the smaller, triangular-shaped chest muscle)




Directions:

  1. Starting in a high-plank position, you’ll place your hands shoulder-width apart, or a little bit wider. Straighten your arms and legs.

  2. Lower your body by bending your elbows and lowering toward the floor, your elbows should be at about a 45-degree angle to your body.

  3. Your fingers should be splayed, with your middle fingers pointing toward 12 o’clock.

  4. Pause, then you’ll press your body upward—think about pushing away the floor—and keep your core tight.

  5. Repeat


[4] Walking lunge

By traveling instead of staying stationary in a lunge, you’ll add aspects of stability, mobility, and balance.



Directions:

  1. Stand up straight with your feet shoulder-width apart. Your hands can stay by the side of your body or on your hips.

  2. Step forward with your right leg, putting the weight into your heel.

  3. Bend the right knee, lowering down so that it’s parallel to the floor in a lunge position. Pause for a beat.

  4. Without moving the right leg, move your left foot forward, repeating the same movement on the left leg. Pause as your left leg is parallel to the floor in a lunge position.

  5. Repeat this movement, “walking” forward as you lunge, alternating legs.

  6. Do 10 to 12 reps on each leg. Perform 2 to 3 sets.


[5] Pike Pushups

The pike push up is a great exercise for building shoulder strength and improving core stability.



Directions:

  1. Assume a pushup position on the floor. Your arms should be straight and your hands should be shoulder-width apart.

  2. Now lift up your hips so that your body forms an upside down V. Your legs and arms should stay as straight as possible.

  3. Bend your elbows and lower your upper body until the top of your head nearly touches the floor.

  4. Pause, and then push yourself back up until your arms are straight.


[6] Get-up squat

Get-up squats are great for time under tension, or keeping your legs and glutes under continuous work, which adds to the burn.



Directions:

  1. Drop down into a squat position. You won’t stand at all during this move.

  2. Drop your knees down to the ground one at a time so you’re kneeling.

  3. Step your feet back to the ground one at a time, maintaining that squat position.

  4. Repeat as quickly as you can while maintaining good form.


[7] Superman

Work your lower back — and the whole backside of your body — with a superman. Go as slowly as you can here to really reap the benefits of this move.



Directions:

  1. Lie on your stomach, arms and legs extended.

  2. Keeping your neck neutral, recruit your core and the back of your body to simultaneously raise your arms and legs up and off the ground as high as they’ll go.

  3. Pause for 1 second at the top, and slowly lower back to the start position.


[8] Plank with alternating leg lift

Adding leg raises can help activate your ab muscles more than regular planks, and they’re effective at strengthening your core. With a strong core comes good posture, better balance, and even a healthier back.


Directions:

  1. Start in plank position with hands shoulder-width apart. Your shoulders, hips, and ankles should be in a line.

  2. Keep abs engaged and raise right leg off the floor until it’s at about hip height. Keep right foot flexed.

  3. Pause and feel the burn. Then lower your right leg back to the floor.

  4. Repeat with your left leg.

[9] Kneeling side plank with hip abduction

It is a great exercise to work both your obliques and your glutes.


Directions:

  1. Lie on your right side on an exercise mat with your left leg lying directly over your right leg and bend your knees to a comfortable position.

  2. Raise your upper body to support yourself on your right arm, your right elbow should bend to 90 degrees and be positioned directly under your shoulder.

  3. Align your head with your spine and keep your hips and lower knee in contact with the exercise mat.

  4. Exhale, gently contract your abdominal/core muscles to stiffen your spine and lift your hips off the mat, but keeping contact with your knee, and head aligned with your spine.

  5. While maintaining a side plank, lift your top leg up and down while keeping a neutral alignment between the shoulders, spine, hips, knees and ankles.

  6. Hold.


[10] Dead bug

Activate those deep core muscles with a dead bug.



Directions:

  1. Start lying on your back, legs at tabletop, and arms extended in front of you.

  2. In a coordinated motion, extend your left leg and drop your right arm above your head, taking care that your lower back stays flat to the ground.

  3. Bring your leg back to tabletop and your arm in front of you, then repeat with the opposite arm and leg.


References:

https://www.healthline.com/health/fitness-exercise/at-home-workouts#intermediate-routine

http://www.youtube.com

http://www.verywellfit.com

http://www.self.com

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