The Lazy Person’s Guide To Toning Your Body At Home

african american woman laying on couch listening to musicConvincing yourself it’s time to start exercising should be easy — there are just so many exercise benefits. It’s finding an exercise routine that works for you — and beginning it the right way — that can be difficult.

If you try to jump from no exercise to running a mile or two, you’ll likely wind up so sore and exhausted that you give up again. It’s perfectly fine to start slowly with easy exercises — you’ll still get exercise benefits and improve your heart health.

Recognize that small changes over time can yield big results. Starting out slowly also enables your body to get used to more physical activity and reduces the risk of injury. To start making a difference in your heart health and get the most exercise benefits, put a plan in place and have specific goals in mind. You will see that, with a gradual start and the right mindset, a fitness routine can significantly improve your cardiovascular health within three months.

Let’s Start Exercising: First Steps

You don’t need to push yourself to the limit on your first day. Remind yourself that fitness starts with just doing more today than you did yesterday. So for the couch potato, even spending 30 minutes less sitting is the beginning of a fitness program.

To figure out how much you’re currently moving, pick up an inexpensive pedometer. Using a pedometer is one of the best ways to start increasing activity. Record your steps for about three days to get an average. Then use that number to set a goal, increasing your steps by 20 percent every day to eventually reach 10,000 steps per day.

Walking is just one of many choices to get active. However, it is often a good way to get back into fitness if you’ve strayed. It’s an easy exercise that’s convenient and enjoyable.

Do Activities You Enjoy

Don’t force yourself to run every day if you hate running, and don’t spend hours cursing the elliptical machine or stationary bike at the gym if those machines just don’t appeal to you. Finding an exercise that you enjoy is a part of a strategy or plan to change lifestyle behavior and stay active throughout your life. The type of exercise you choose truly affects your motivation to get moving. Maybe it’s a yoga class some days and tennis or hiking with a buddy on others. Doing a variety of exercises will help keep your workouts fresh and keep you interested.

Easy Exercises at Home and Work

With a hectic work schedule followed by demands at home, it may be hard to squeeze in a trip to the gym. The good news is you may not have to go anywhere to get a good workout. Any kind of movement can be considered activity and will burn calories.

Exercise #1: Couch Dips
Sit at the edge of the sofa and place your palms on each side of your hips. Lower the booty off the couch like you are going to perform a triceps dip. Hold that position with your feet on the floor and knees bent at 90 degrees. Your elbows should be kept slightly bent and parallel, facing the back of the couch.

Next, kick your legs, starting with the right leg and kick it out straight in front of you just above your hips. Return the foot back to the floor. Hop the feet barely off the ground and with that same right leg kick it out slightly crossing over to your left side, return the foot on the ground, take another small hop and repeat on the left. You’ll feel this full body in your triceps, forearms, shoulders, chest, core, glutes, hamstrings, quads and inner thighs.

Exercise #2: Remote Rev-Ups
Stand in front of the couch facing the TV. Place your feet parallel and slightly wider than shoulder-width apart (resembling a sumo stance). Hold on to your remote control in the right hand. Perform 4 right arms forward punches while slowly lowering your body down towards the cushion of the couch with each punch. By the fourth punch, your booty should barely touch the couch. Now, continue repeating the…