Last week, I talked about the benefits of working out in the morning, about how great it was to jumpstart your day–and body–with a good, rigorous sweat. Just a few days ago, the guys at one of my favorite sites, Art of Manliness, offered up a gem: Start Off Your Day with The 15-Minute Bodyweight Workout.
How much better than that can it get?!
Well, this much better: It works just as well for women as men.
Given the time constraints the workout is pretty simple: split- and single-leg squats (legs, including quads, flexibility), pushups (arms, back, chest), skull-crushers (triceps, forearms, wrists) and plank (core).
It’s great for beginners (especially the plank, which gives you a great barometer of your overall fitness level; work up to being able to do it for two minutes). Not too taxing, but its something.
It’s also great for people who workout regularly, but might have an early meeting or flight, and can’t get to the gym. Just do it, and you won’t feel guilty for missing your workout.
It’s also a great way to mix it up, get out of a rut. Instead of getting up before the rooster every day to meet the people opening the gym, sleep in one morning and do this workout instead. One day off your manly (or womanly) regiment won’t hurt you!
One caveat: I’d add sit-ups to the mix. Anchor your feet beneath the bed, bend your knees and with your hands by your ears (not behind your neck, pulling), sit up and bring your elbows to your knees.
Or you can go bicycle sit-ups, or any of the myriad variations of crunches.
So maybe my morning bodyweight workout is 20 minutes.
A few yoga moves is also a great way to start the day. But only if you’re familiar enough with the basic moves not to hurt yourself or get yourself twisted into such a knot you won’t make it to work unless EMS workers pry you loose with the Jaws of Life!
If you’ve been fighting working out, just try it: Three times over the next week. Yes, you’ll be sore and you won’t be able to do everything. But this is a great way to begin to gain the benefits of regular exercise.
And if you workout regularly, try it at least once this week. You’ll be surprised how much of a burn you can get without all that fancy equipment you’re paying for at the gym.
Either way, challenge yourself!