Recently, I’ve started to to lift weights again. I appreciate the challenge of using the entire body and lift any sort of weight. With resistance and strength training though, my favorite go-to for travel or ease of workouts will always be body weight exercises!
There are a multitude of standard exercises using one’s own body weight that include lunges, squats, push-ups, and chair exercises. Not only are these types of exercises easy to do on the go, they can challenge your body to work all of the muscles to maintain form rather than rely on a seated position or to hold an external load.
Today let’s explore some other exercises for body weight resistance movement ideas!
Suspension training has been a favorite of mine ever since I took my first TRX class and attended more training at IDEAfit East. We’ve since had the opportunity to have Suspension straps at the house, that we can use for strength utilizing our own body weight. No matter what size someone is, they’re using their own body weight and are able to adjust the straps to their desired height for each exercise. Therefore, you have to trust your core for stability and utilize alignment to enhance the effectiveness of each strength movement. Here I’m doing my favorite suspension exercise, the lat row, where you can adjust difficulty with the positioning of the feet for more or less leverage. Below that, I’m performing a plank while using the suspension straps; this takes away the stability of the feet to focus more energy in the core area.
Speaking of, Plank variations can include anything from a stable plank, to a shifting plank to work the core. You can also use principles of plank variations to align the core and keep the same focus on hands and feet to perform push-ups of all kinds, including V Push-ups that I learned with Insanity. These push-ups tend to focus more on the deltoid (shoulder) muscles as well as the upper back instead of the chest and triceps primarily. V Push-ups are a favorite plank/Pushup variation and body weight exercise of mine that I do when we travel. Adjustments can be made with feet positioning, but the key is to try to do as much of a vertical pike position as you can before lowering your head down to the floor with your arms and coming back up. Taking breaks can help ensure you’re using proper form before proceeding to more repetitions.
PiYo lunge pulses challenge not only our alignment and form when beginning in the high lunge position, but also when we lower down into a lower lunge using our arms for balance. This is a fun lower body move in PiYo both in-class and in the at-home version. Starting in a Warrior 2 position, you adjust yourself to face front almost like a Warrior 1 before lifting arms up and then bending the front knee and lowering arms down.
How do you get in your resistance and strength training?
Do you prefer weights, body weight, or both?