It's that time of year again...the time when you skip your workouts in favour of shopping, baking, scarfing hors d'ouevres and wine, all the while imagining how ridiculously fit you're going to be...starting in January, of course. When you do get to a class or out for a jog, your bones creak like old floorboards and you get so lightheaded you actually consider rolling up in the corner and just heading into the light. Because HUNGOVER.
It's true that social obligations and emergency wine drinking disasters might interfere with your usual workout schedule, and that's okay from time to time, but you can maintain that spark, and prevent a coronary when you do get back to the gym, by injecting tiny bouts of exercise into your routine. I present to you 3 workouts, all under 5 minutes, that can be done in 3 rooms of your house, with common objects. Push yourself for 3-5 minutes and move on with your day. Squeeze 1-3 of these into your "non-workout" days and you can stop negotiating with your higher power when you actually make it to your morning spin class.
Waiting for water to boil? Kids screwing around with the last of their morning oatmeal? 5 more minutes on those muffins? Let's go!
Counter pushups + mountain climbers: Face counter with hands shoulder-width apart, on balls of feet and body in a straight line (pushup position). Drop into a pushup -- try to tap your ribcage right on the counter each time -- then press back up; immediately begin running knees up toward the chest while still maintaining weight over arms on the counter. Do one pushup, then run knees to chest, alternating, 10 times. Too hard? March the legs instead of running. Too easy? Bring your hands narrower into a triceps pushup position and/or run the knees 20 times per rep. Repeat the whole sequence 10 times.
Chair dips: Sit on the edge of the chair, hands tucked next to your hips, fingers down. Lift your butt off and squeeze your shoulder blades back to lift your chest and chin up. Bend your elbows to lower yourself until your elbows are at 90 degrees, then press back and up to bring shoulders back over wrists. Too hard? Bring your feet closer to your bum. Too easy? Extend legs to partially straight or straight. Complete 10-20 reps.
Chair plank + leg lift: Face chair (push the chair against the table or wall so it doesn't slide) and place hands shoulder width on top, stepping feet back into an elevated plank position. Keep weight over upper body so shoulders are directly over wrists and you are light on your feet. Exhale & lift left leg into air, squeezing butt for one count, then lower and exhale as you raise right leg into air, squeezing butt again. Too hard? Omit leg lifts. Too easy? Drop to elbows and toes. Continue alternating for 20-30 reps.
Squat + can raise: Hold 2 cans or jars (or actual dumbbells if you got 'em) at your sides, with feet hip-width apart. Squat and freeze at the bottom of the squat while you raise arms out to sides in a "T" shape, just to shoulder height, then down, and rise out of the squat. Too hard? Squat, rise, then perform the side raise. Too easy? Hold each squat rep for 3 side raises before rising. Continue the squat, raise, stand pattern for 10-20 reps.
Amazing! A full body workout in under 5 minutes. If you're feeling ambitious, do it all over again for a challenging 10 minute workout. Be sure to tweet me and YMC at @bellybootcamp & @yummymummyclub when you complete your Kitchen Challenge!
Stay tuned next week for the Living Room Workout and Bedroom Workout (the OTHER kind of bedroom workout).
Want more quick at-home workouts? Try this 10-minute workout to tone your full body, these lunch-hour workouts that still leave you time to eat, or try adding some cardio intervals to your home routine for a fat-burning blast!