20 Easy At-Home Workouts To Build Strength In Any Season
— Ariela Basson/Fatherly; Getty Images
Whether you’re a novice to working out or a seasoned athlete, the best at-home workouts can help you drop weight, build muscle, and avoid those recurring monthly gym fees. So if you’re looking for a fresh fitness start, our compilation of strength and cardio moves for home workouts will help you get shredded in between your couch and coffee table.
Even if busting out of the house for a jog or bike ride is entirely possible, grabbing a few minutes for an at-home workout can be a secret weapon in any season. Easy home workouts can make you sweat and build muscle, with minimal equipment and time and just a little know-how.
We’ve put together an easy at-home workout comprised of 20 strength and cardio moves that can be performed in your living room, in less than 30 minutes. Doing these exercises at home will tone your weak spots, get your blood flowing and heart pumping, and allow you to supervise (at least in theory) your kids nearby while you’re at it. String together the following in an order of your choosing and keep at it.
Easy At-Home Workouts to Build Core Strength
— Syda Productions/Shutterstock
Sit-Ups. Basic, but effective. Lie on your back with knees bent, engage your abs to lift your shoulders from the ground and close to your thighs, hold for a second, and return to start. Aim for 20 reps, and work your way up to 50 once you’re a pro. For maximum effect, don’t tuck your feet under a chair or table for assistance.
Crunches. These bite-sized versions of the whole enchilada isolate smaller, deeper abdominal muscles in their motion. Lie on your back with knees bent, engage your abs to lift your shoulders to about 30 degrees from the ground, hold for a second, and return to start. Shoot for three sets of 20.
Bicycles. Lie on your back, feet in the air, knees bent. Place your hands behind your head. Vigorously pump your legs in the classic bicycle motion for one minute.
Planks. Hands down the best overall bodyweight toning move you can do. Rest on your elbows and toes, keeping your back and legs straight. Hold for one minute.
Lower Body At-Home Workouts
Squats. Back straight, feet slightly turned out. Drop your seat to knee height. Do two sets of 10. Advanced/Dad version: Do these with your kid on your back.
Lunges. This is the best quad toner in town. Start standing with your feet parallel. Take a big step forward with your right leg, landing with your knee bent and over your toes. Allow your back knee to drop down toward the floor. Push off your right front foot to return to standing. Do two sets of 10 on each side.
Squat Jumps. Bend your knees as if you’re going into the squat position, tucking your arms like a downhill skier. Spring off the floor and straighten your legs in the air, before landing in a squat once again. Advanced Version: When you push off the floor into a jump, add a half-twist so you land facing the opposite direction. Do two sets of 10.
High Knees. Jog in place for one minute, lifting each knee as high as you can.
Bavarian Split Squats. It sounds hardcore, but it’s just a regular squat with one leg resting on a chair seat or low table behind you. Focus on keeping your weight over your forward leg, and don’t let your knee bend further than your toes. Two sets of 10 on each side.
Calf Raises. Face a wall and place your palms against it for balance and support. Rise up onto your toes and back down. Repeat 20 times. Advanced Version: Let your kid ride piggyback for extra resistance.
Upper Body At-Home Workouts
Dips. Sit in a sturdy chair, hands holding the front edge of the seat. Push your butt forward until it is suspended in front of the seat and your weight is being supported by your arms. Bend elbows and drop your hips toward the floor. Straighten. Do two sets of 10 dips.
Push-Ups. Drop and give us 20. Let your child sit on your butt for extra weight resistance.
Dead Lifts. A modified version of the gym classic, you’ll need a heavy, low-to-the-ground object for this, such as two gallon-size jugs of water, dumbbells, or a duffel bag filled with shoes. Start standing, feet shoulder-width apart, back straight, knees slightly bent. Keeping your back straight, reach down and grab hold of the weighted object on the floor in front of you. Return to a vertical position. Lower the weight back down. Do 20 times.
Arm Circles. While standing, hold your arms out to the side of your body so they’re parallel to the floor. Move your arms forward in small circles for 20 seconds, then backwards for 20 seconds.
Plank Shoulder Taps: Begin in plank position, on hands rather than elbows. Balancing on your left hand, tap your right hand to your left shoulder. Return to start and repeat on opposite side. Do 10 reps on each side.
Cardio-Boosting Home Workouts
Jumping Jacks. Time to get your heart rate up. Making sure to raise your hands over your head each time, and keep going for at least one minute.
Burpees. Get from a perfect plank to a jump with hands in the air and back again as fast as possible. Start with 10 and work up from there.
Butt Kicks. Jog in place for one minute, kicking your butt each time your foot leaves the ground.
Mountain Climbers. Begin in plank position, on hands rather than elbows. Bring your right knee up to your chest, then switch feet and bring left knee to chest. Keep hips low. Repeat for 30 seconds.
Skaters. Start from standing. Balancing on your left leg in a slight squat, bring right leg behind while bent. Push off left leg and swing arms to the right to jump laterally and land on the right leg, bringing left leg behind. After a brief pause, push off right leg and swing arms to left to jump laterally and land on left leg. Repeat for 30 seconds.