Using Your Bodyweight to Boost Your Fitness

Man Doing Plank in Gym
Man Doing Plank in Gym

Equipment Free Workouts with Your Bodyweight

Whilst our gyms are closed, we’re encouraging our members to continue working on their fitness and to keep pushing themselves to achieve amazing things just as they were before we closed our gyms. You might have limited amount of equipment or have none at all but that’s not a problem. There are plenty of ways that you can use just your bodyweight to exercise in the comfort of your own home or your garden and still make positive steps on your fitness journey.

Girl Doing Home Workout on Sofa

Useful Bodyweight Exercise to Try at Home

The possibilities with bodyweight exercises is endless. They’re also very simple exercises that everyone can perform no matter their fitness ability and strength. Bodyweight exercises require nothing expect yourself. No need for anything else. If you’re new to exercise or a gym veteran, bodyweight exercises can be really useful to include in your daily exercise routine at home or at the gym. Once our gyms reopen, keep performing these type of exercises as they’ll help with day-to-day tasks and your general health.

Some of the best bodyweight exercises for your lower body are squats, lunges, glute bridges, donkey kicks and jumping squats. These all push your muscles to work harder in your lower body and increase strength and mobility. If you’d like to work on your upper body, you’ll want to do exercises such a press ups, back raises, tricep dips and pull ups. All of these can be performed using just your bodyweight and have an amazing impact on your strength, muscle definition and general fitness. To really work your core and tone your stomach, bodyweight abs exercises are really effective. This means exercises such as sit ups, crunches, shoulder taps and scissor kicks.

Once you’ve got the basic moves mastered, this is when you can push yourself slightly out of your comfort zone and use weights and other machines and equipment to help you smash your goals and make positive growth on your fitness journey.

Neglecting Bodyweight is Neglecting Your Goals

Sometimes people think to get bigger and stronger you have to be using weights. Of course, weights are important in regards to this and are the catalyst for muscle growth and muscle definition but this will be difficult to do without having a strong base.

If you’re lifting heavy, perform bodyweight exercises to help you warm up and ease your muscles into the workout. If you’re new to the gyms and exercises, bodyweight exercises help to build up a strong foundation. For example, to work on your upper body strength, start with bodyweight press ups either laid flat or on your knees. Once you’ve built up enough confidence and strength to complete multiple sets of these quite easily, you can then move onto much more challenging exercises such as a bench press or chest fly.

You can make amazing progress just by using your bodyweight so try not to neglect these type of exercises and movements. Sometimes people think by doing bodyweight exercise that they’re not making progress when in fact, you’re making amazing progress and building strong foundations across your body to help you with running, weight training, group exercises class or general daily tasks.

Exercise at Home to Suit You and Your Goals

Whilst you might be missing your favourite piece of equipment from your Xercise4Less gym, use this time to try new things and mix up your typical training routine. If you usually rush over to the squat rack, follow a Leg Circuit in your living room of bodyweight lunges, squats and glute bridges and keep going until your muscles give in. If you’re a big fan of cardio training on the stair climbers, why not follow a HIIT workout guide packed with bodyweight moves to raise your heart rate and burn calories fast? Plus, all of our quality equipment and facilities will be waiting for you upon your return.

We’ve put together a wide range of  @Home Workouts that you can complete in the comfort of your own home/garden. There is something for everyone – any ability, any fitness goal, any age – so whilst our gyms are temporarily closed, give one of them a try and see how it goes. You might just fall in love with a type of training that you never tried before.

Whatever you’re doing at the moment, try your best to establish a positive exercises routine, stay safe, look after your mental health and we’ll see you once we reopen.

Working Out with Weights At Home

Dumbbells
Dumbbells

Using Weights to Encourage Progress at Home

We have a wide range of free weights and resistance equipment in all of our gyms which help you to increase muscle and boost your strength at Xercise4Less. Whilst our gyms are temporarily closed under Government instruction, we want to help you keep making positive progress with your fitness.

By using weighted equipment such as dumbbells, kettlebells, barbells and medicine balls, you have option to increase your muscle mass or just maintain the strength and muscle you already have. Play around with different techniques and styles of training to see which way of working works best for you.

Dumbbells at Home Equipment

Get Creative with Your Weights at Home

If you’re one of the lucky ones who has some weighted equipment at home then congratulations! We’re aware that this equipment is difficult to hold of with an increase in demand so if you haven’t got equipment such as kettlebells, dumbbells, benches and squat racks at home, that’s not a problem because there are ways to work around this.

There are some great dumbbell alternatives that you probably already have in your home that you never thought of using. You could fill up some water bottles or empty fabric softener bottles. Bags of rice and sugar are also good alternatives. For heavier weights, fill two carrier bags with an even amount of jars and tins. To recreate a kettlebell at home, fill up a rucksack with heavy household items or use a tin of paint or even a bag of protein. Barbells could be created with some filled washing baskets on either side of a stick or pole. The possibilities are endless, just get creative and see what you already have in your home space.

Get creative with your types of training too. To encourage muscle growth, use time under tension techniques. This means performing reps slowly e.g. lower your body into a squat for 3 seconds, hold it and then return upright in 3 seconds. If you struggle with the weight whilst doing it, lower the weight and if it’s too easy, increase it.

Another way to maintain muscle and possibly boost strength is to perform a high number of reps and keep pushing yourself until you have no option but to give in. This means that you’re reaching your full potential and your muscles have no option but to get stronger. Increasing the frequency of training certain muscles will help you whilst you’ve got limited equipment too. Repeat the same 3 workouts twice in a week to ensure you’re maintaining the muscle that you’ve worked hard to build.

Man doing Home Workout with Weights

Preventing Injury with Weighted Workouts

Whilst using free weights equipment at home, it’s just as important as ever to make sure that you’re exercising safely to prevent injury. Just like you would when using our gyms, before you start your workout, you need to be in a big enough exercise space so that you can move freely with little to no limitations.

If you can, try to position your workout in front of a mirror or somewhere that you’re able to see your reflection so that you can keep an eye on your form. For example, when performing weights squats your back should be straight at all times and not hunch over. If you don’t have a mirror big enough, set up your phone to record yourself and then watch it back to see if you’re making any mistakes that you can rectify next time. If you’re unsure of how to perform an exercise, complete your first couple of sets slowly until you’re comfortable with the form and can feel it working the correct muscles.

Home Workouts Will Help You on Your Fitness Journey

We understand how important your fitness journey is to you and that’s why we’ve created a wide range of @Home Workouts for different fitness abilities and fitness goals so that everyone can focus on their fitness journey at home. By signing up to our FREE 90 day online gym pass, you’ll have access to exclusive home workouts such a HIIT, Abs, Core, Buns of Steel, Shoulder Blast and many more. All existing Xercise4Less Gyms members already have access.

Stay active, stay safe and we look forward to seeing you once our gyms reopen.

Exercise at Home for Your Mental Health

Woman Stretching on Yoga Mat
Woman Stretching on Yoga Mat

Exercise is Essential for Your Mental Health

Before we had to close our gyms under Government instruction, you may have been visiting the gym on a regular basis to help you move closer your fitness goals. Whilst you were doing this, it had a very positive impact on your mental health without you even realising it. Regular exercise works wonders for your wellbeing and mental strength. Now that our gyms are temporarily closed, try to remain focused on your fitness and include regular exercise into your daily routine to help you get feel happier and healthier.

Optimising Sleep Blog - Home Exercise

Establishing an Exercise Routine At Home

Self-isolation can be hard but something that will help you get through is establishing a daily or weekly routine. If you usually head to the gym first thing in a morning, still wake up early and do what you can from home. Similarly, if you’re a night owl, get that workout in just before winding down for the evening.

Something as simple as this can work wonders for your mental health because you’re still doing something productive regularly whether you workout for 15 minutes or an hour. Once your workout is over, endorphins will start flowing around your body and you’ll feel much more positive and uplifted. At times, especially when you feel stuck at home, it can be difficult to motivate yourself but remind yourself how good you’ll feel afterwards to give yourself the extra boost that you need.

Whilst you’re unable to use our equipment and facilities, don’t let that you push you backwards and reverse any progress and hard work. Try not to get too caught up in what you should be or could be doing, instead, make the most of the extra time you’ve got at home now. This could be doing a circuit workout in your living room, an upper body routine in your garden or going outside for a run for your one form of outdoor daily exercise. Every bit of exercise you’re doing at home will positively impact your mental health.

Dumbbells at Home Equipment

How Exercise Can Help Your Mental Health

Throughout the Coronavirus crisis, you may experience some high days and some low days but one thing that you can do every day to make you feel better is moving your body. As soon as you start exercising, you’ll stop worrying about the negatives and will start to boost your overall mood as you focus on your next movement or getting through the workout. You’ll start to boost your mental strength as well as your physical strength so that the next time you do experience low mood or you’re lacking motivation, you’ll know to turn to exercise to make yourself feel better.

Try not to worry about what others are doing around you; you know yourself and your abilities so focus on that and follow exercise routines that will help you feel healthy and happy. Including regular exercise in your daily routine will help you relieve stress, improve your sleep and prevent the flow of worries and negative thoughts.

Exercise at Home to Suit You and Your Goals

Do you remember why you joined our gyms in the first place? Whether that was to help you lose weight, build up strength and muscle, tone and condition or have a positive impact on your mental health, you can still do that at home whilst our gyms are temporarily closed.

You’re not going to cancel out any of that hard work if you continue to exercise at home whether it’s low or high intensity. We understand how important your fitness journey is to you and that’s why we’ve created a wide range of @Home Workouts for different fitness abilities and fitness goals so that everyone can focus on their physical and mental health at home.

Use this time to try something new a try like Stretch or Balance or continue to follow your typical gym routine with Push, Pull and Full Body. Continue to exercise, establish a positive routine, stay safe and we look forward to seeing you when we re-open.