No more excuses! Gym's are closed, work from home and no more fun outside? Don't let your fitness take a hit too! Now is a good time to either get started or to keep going with your fitness journey by doing highly effective home workout programs.
This is why in the following blog posts I want to provide you with a well-rounded program. There is a Phase 1 and a Phase 2, each containing 2 workouts (Day A and Day B) allowing you to train for at least 3x per week on a full body structure during each phase. Each Phase is designed to be trained for approximately 4 weeks.
Phase 1 - Day A
Phase 1 is intended as an entry into many of the fundamental strength exercises and aims to gradually build up mastery and strength with regard to these movements. Not everybody can do full pushups for example - therefore training with negative or kneeling pushups can be an effective way to build up the necessary foundation for long term progression. Depending on your fitness and strength levels you might find phase 1 too easy - in that case proceed to phase 2 straight away and stay tuned for my intermediate and advanced programs!
Before you start your workouts I recommend to do a short Warm Up containing dynamic stretching, activation drills and tissue prep (via foam rolling).
But now let's dive into how to do each of the exercises in Phase 1 - Day A:
A Box Squats
Position yourself in front of a chair, couch or other solid furniture that provides approximately knee height. Your feet should be parallel and at least shoulder-width apart from each other. Make sure to distribute your weight evenly on both legs.
You can use a filled (with books, tin cans, bottles etc.) backpack to add weight to this exercise.
Standing up right start hinging at your hip and bending at your knees in order to lower your buttocks towards the box.
Try to tap the box with your buttocks without actually sitting down. It is crucial you maintain full body tension at bottom of this movement. Hold this lowered position shortly and then squat back up.
Make sure to keep your back straight and your core engaged.
B Negative Pushups
Set yourself up in a push up position: arms are vertically extended under your chest and your whole body is tense (just like in a plank - one straight line from your heels through your hips to your shoulders)
While maintaining this full body tension try to lower yourself down for 5 seconds by bending your elbows. Try avoiding a hip sac or arching your lower back. Ideally your hips and chest travel down aligned and at the same pace.
Lower yourself till your chest is nearly between your hands. During the lowering movement try keeping an arm angle between 30-70 degrees in your arm pits.
Drop your knees at the bottom and press yourself up by doing a "kneeling pushup" that is significantly easier.
C Elevated Glute Bridge
In front of a couch or bed lie down with a flat back and bend your knees in order to position your feet on that furniture. Your buttocks should be rather close to the furniture and there should be a bend lower or equal to 90 degrees at your knees.
In order to initiate the bridge push through your heels while extending your hips up by contracting your glutes.
Hold the top position for around 2-3 seconds and then lower yourself in a controlled way back down into the starting position.
D Three-Point Dumbbell Row
Bent over while keeping a straight back and put one of your arms on a chair or table edge (Point 1) while distributing your weight equally on both feet (Point 2 & 3, hence "three-point" DB row)
Now row a weight (dumbbell, kettlebell or filled suitcase) with the other arm towards your lower chest. Make sure to row from your shoulders.
E Side Plank
Lie down on one of your sides and position your forearm and elbow under the shoulder that is closest to the floor. Ensure your bodies fully straightened. Your hip is on the ground in this position and your feet are stacked on top of each other.
Lift your hip up in order to create one straight line from your head, through your hip to your feet.
Keep body tension and hold this position for the prescribed amount of time.