Whenever you feel the need to work out, but can’t really bring yourself to do that for a full gym session, you can try some of these full body exercises. They work more muscle groups at once, thus burning more fat, faster, and you can get a full workout in less than 15 minutes.
Best full body exercises
1. Lunges (and variations)
With your feet apart (about hip-widt), take a large step forward with your right foot. Make sure the foot is well planted on the floor, so that you can then bend the left knee to a 90-degree angle. Your back knee must lightly touch the ground (or hover above it a little). Push up with your front leg to return to the starting position, then repeat on the other side.
Exercising your leg muscles helps increase blood flow to the heart and forces it to work harder, lunges are a good part of a cardiovascular routine (and they can help prevent varicose veins!).
How much? 10 to 20 reps, alternating sides.
Variations: Walking lunges, where the movement is pretty much the same, but you walk forward with each bend. Using weights (dumbbells or even water bottles) will kill your butt! So give this one a try. If this seems too easy for you, than you can try some dumbbell lunges like in the picture below.
2. The Plank
The plank is a very effective full body exercise, and is a great alternative to sit-ups for those who want to work their core. But this exercise strengthens the muscles that support your spine while giving you rock-hard abs, but also needs other muscles in your body to be tense so as to support you (your shoulders and your legs are definitely involved.)
To do this, lie on your stomach with your elbows on the floor in front of you, then rise up onto your toes and straighten your body like a plank (hence, the clever name). Hold for 10 to 20 counts, and then lower yourself back down.
Try to keep a plank for a minimum of 30 seconds each time.
3. Jumping Jacks
This is a very easy exercise, but a very effective one. It helps build up cardio endurance, it works a lot of muscles in just a few short seconds, and it’s fun. What more can you want?
Start from a standing position, with your hands resting to your sides. Jump while spreading your legs a bit more than shoulder width apart, and at the same time raise your arms laterally until they are above your head. Then jump back into the initial position.
This full body exercise works your leg muscles (quads, hamstrings, glutes and calves), your arm muscles, your abs (because you need your core engaged so as to keep your balance properly) and even your back. This is a great full body exercise to do while you’re on the move, or even at home on a lazy day when you are just looking for a pick-me-up.
Tell us in a comment about your favorite full body exercises!