SPRINGFIELD, Mo. Working out at home doesn't mean you have to make a big investment in exercise
equipment. In the DIY spirit, you can use things you probably already have around
the house to add intensity to your workout. Grab a dishtowel, a gallon of water or
laundry detergent and a pair of paper plates for a great at home workout.
Holding a dishtowel can create resistance with tension. My two favorite towel
exercises are reverse lunges with a twist and Super Woman.
Reverse lunge with a twist: Hold the dishtowel tightly in front of you with arms
about shoulder width apart and at chest height. Take a step back with your right leg
into a lunge position will twisting the towel to your left side. Return to start and take
a step back into lunge position with your left foot and twist to your right. Continue
to alternate sides for desired reps or time.
Super Woman: Lay face down on the ground with your arms out in front and tightly
gripping the towel. Lift your knees and chest off the ground by engaging your glutes
and low back. Retract your shoulder blades and pull the towel into your chest. (Your
upper body should look like a W.) Release arms back out in front of you and return
to the starting position. Repeat for desired time or repetitions.
A gallon of water or a container of laundry detergent can make a excellent dumbbell
substitute. You can use it for any exercise you might do with a single arm, like a row,
as well as lower body exercises like a goblet squat or single leg Romanian deadlift.
Goblet squats: Hold the weight in front of you at chest height. Feet should be
somewhere between shoulder and hip width apart with toes slightly turned out.
Keep weight in your heels and eyes up as you sit back in to your squat. Push through
your heels to return back to your starting position. Repeat for time or reps.
Single Leg Romanian deadlift: Hold your "weight" in your right hand and pick up
your right leg so that you are balancing on your left foot. With a flat back, hinge
forward from your hips as though you are trying to touch your left foot with the
weight. Keep your left knee unlocked so you can balance with your glutes and not
your knee. Return to start and repeat for desired reps or time before switching
Paper plates are a great substitute for a piece of exercise equipment called Valslides.
They can add a challenge to exercises you may already know, like a plank, or give you a low impact option for mountain climbers.
Sliding Side Plank: Assume a plank position with paper plates under your toes. Staying stable in your core and keeping a straight leg, slide your right foot to the side. Return the foot to the original position and slide out your left foot. Alternate sides for desired reps or times.
Mountain Climbers: Place paper plates under your feet and assume a plank position on hands. Alternate bending your knees to pull the plates in and bring your knees to your chest. Repeat for time or reps.