Last week somebody asked me about the benefits of bodyweight training and whether or not it is good for everyone. I think bodyweight training is great for everyone! There are a ton of benefits to this type of training. In this week’s column you will learn the main benefits. I will end the column with the simplest, most effective workout I have ever made… it’s a bodyweight workout you can do ANYWHERE.
Free and Portable
Bodyweight training requires no equipment at all (a mat is helpful, but you can always just use a towel or two if you don’t have a mat handy). That makes it free, so it’s great if you’re working on a budget. Bodyweight training is portable — wherever you go, your body is there — so it’s great for travel. You can both gain strength and improve cardio vascular strength through body weight training.
Time Saving and Convenient
It’s 2017, and if you are doing well, it’s probably because you are on a strong hustle and you are busy. But don’t let that be a reason for your fitness and body goals to suffer. Even a 7- to 12- minute bodyweight workout can achieve quality cardio and strength gains if you go hard and do it properly.
You don’t have to spend time getting to and from the gym, packing a bag and a shaving kit. You can do a quick workout at home or in your hotel room before you head out to conquer the day.
You also can add bodyweight exercises to your gym workout to save time, increase your endurance and boost your cardio vascular system (which turns up your fat burning internal furnace). There are many ways you can do this. Here’s a simple starter idea:
— Upper Body Day: do 20 squats instead of resting between sets
— Lower Body Day: do 20 pushups instead of resting between sets
Then turn up the heat by doing a cardio move between all sets instead of resting. You can do this a couple of ways:
— Pick one move and use it between all sets (example: 20 jumping jacks)
— For more variety pick a few moves and cycle through them between sets (example: jumping jacks, mountain climbers, high knees, butt kicks, etc.)
Then there’s the next level (not for the faint of heart). Do 10 (normal crazy person) to 20 (super next level crazy person) burpees between sets
Practical Real Life Applications
Bodyweight training is an important part of any personal training I do with clients for a few reasons. Most important is that bodyweight training uses movements that you use in real life to build strength. For example, if you do push-ups all the time and you accidentally trip, you will have the upper body strength to break your fall and save your teeth and pretty face from a hard landing.
You may remember that a couple of weeks ago I wrote about the importance of pull-ups. If you are out hiking or doing anything where you are falling, you will have the grip strength to grab something and the upper body strength to pull yourself up.
My Rockstar Travel Workout
My own traveling body weight workout is crazy simple but super challenging.
— Pushups – 1 minute
— Squat – 1 minute
— Forearm Plank – 1 minute
— Rest – 1 minute
Repeat for 20 minutes.
You build upper body strength, lower body strength, core strength and, trust me, you’ll be getting plenty of cardio in the process! If you don’t have 20 minutes, do 12. If you don’t have 12, do a round any time you can, even one round before you head out to meetings and one round after that last business dinner will reap benefits for you and keep you in shape until your schedule allowa you to hit it hard in the gym again