The first step to getting fit is deciding that you are ready for the change. You can do this! These exercises will help tone your body, increase strength and improve flexibility.
The best part about it is that they don’t take long at all! Take a look below and see which of these exercises would work best for your fitness level. And if you need any more motivation, keep in mind what your goals are – better energy levels, increased circulation, improved mood…the list goes on!
As always, make sure to talk with your doctor before starting any exercise routine, just in case there are any concerns or precautions that should be taken with your health.
Sit on a chair with your feet flat on the floor and shoulder-width apart. Place your hands by your sides, fingers facing forward.
Slowly bend your elbows to lower yourself down towards the floor until you feel a stretch in your triceps (the backs of arms), then push back up again using only the strength of your triceps muscles so that you keep all the movement in those muscles.
Repeat 10 times or as many reps as you can manage when comfortable, gradually working up to an advanced level where you can do this exercise for 1 minute straight without stopping!
Tricep dips not only tone and strengthen your triceps but also work on developing the chest, shoulders, and abs.
Lunge with a twist.
This exercise is great for toning the back of your legs and stomach muscles, as well as improving balance due to the weight shift required for this exercise.
You can do it either standing on one leg or two legs, your choice! Keep your feet hip-width apart and step forward with one foot so that you are in a lunge position (the back knee should be almost touching the ground).
Hold on to something sturdy if you feel intimidated by balancing on one leg. Twist from your core until you can see past your front hand, then slowly return to standing before repeating this motion on the other side.
Repeat 10 times, then switch legs and repeat another 10 reps for 1 minute straight if possible.
The plank is a great exercise for improving your core strength and stability, which will help you in so many ways. It can be done with or without weights, depending on what you feel comfortable doing.
The main part of this exercise is keeping your body straight from head to toe while supporting yourself on your forearms and toes. If balancing is difficult at first, then begin by kneeling on the floor rather than going straight into the full plank position.
You can start holding this pose for 5-10 seconds, then work up to 1 minute before moving on to advanced variations, such as lifting one leg off of the floor at a time until you are in a side plank position – these ones are harder but definitely worth it!
Here is one way to do it harder:
Start in a full plank position, then bring one knee towards your chest before bringing it back out again and alternating legs as quickly as possible for 1 minute straight – this is the advanced version, so you can also do regular plank mountain climbers if necessary!
If you don’t want to try this variation yet, just continue with your basic plank exercise, but at the same time, try to push yourself further each time by increasing either the number of reps or holding it longer. It’s always good to have something to aim towards!
Push-ups are a great way to tone your upper body and core muscles. They require no equipment, which is the best part about them!
Start in either the full plank position or kneeling on the floor, depending on your fitness level, then lower down until your head almost touches the ground before pushing back up again using only your arms (you don’t want to be using any momentum).
Keep your back straight throughout this exercise – if you can’t do it with perfect form yet, just try to get as close as you can by moving faster through each rep if need be. Aim for 10 reps when starting out and gradually increase over time.
This is an easy exercise; all you have to do is lie flat on the floor with your hands either by your side or underneath your bum for extra support.
Bend both legs so that only your upper thighs are touching the ground, then from this position, curl into a ball, bringing both knees up towards the chest while squeezing the core muscles throughout.
Hold at the top of this move before slowly lowering yourself down again for 1 minute straight, if possible, without any breaks.
Here are some of the harder variations:
- Laying down with legs in the air, holding weights/bags over the head
- Laying down with legs in the air, doing reverse crunches against a wall.
This exercise mainly targets your abs but will also strengthen and tone your back, shoulders, and chest. It’s a great way to get rid of that troublesome lower belly fat too!
No gym is needed for this classic exercise! You can do these anywhere and anytime! Just stand with your feet together, arms to your side, then jump up while spreading your legs apart (like the motion of jumping rope) – make sure you land on both feet at exactly the same time to avoid injuries or strain. Repeat as quickly as possible, aiming for 1 minute straight if possible.
Jumping jacks can also be done with a Swiss ball. This will make it harder because you will not only have to balance on the ball but jump over it too!
To do this, get into starting position and then jump over the ball, touching it with both feet before landing on the other side. For easier variations, try bouncing on the ball or sitting down and bouncing up and down while aiming for 1 minute straight – remember, if at first, it is difficult, go at your own pace and gradually build up reps and hold time to get there.
This is great for getting your whole body moving and working those extra calories off. It also works wonders to improve cardiovascular fitness, coordination, and balance, which are all things that begin to decrease once we hit our 40s.
Not only are squats a great and effective workout for your whole body, but they also help to improve balance and stability, which we lose as we age, so this is definitely the one you don’t want to forget about!
Holding your arms out in front of you can help with balance if necessary, but it’s important not to lean against anything – standing up straight is what you should always aim for.
Once you’re in that position, then slowly lower yourself down into a squat before pushing back up again. Aim for 10 reps or more each time, working towards 1 minute of continuous reps.
You can try staying in position for 10 seconds without coming up before lowering yourself back down. This variation is something that should only be attempted when you are able to complete at least 10 reps with good form.
The 10-second stretch will improve your muscle tone and strength in this area also, so it can be well worth giving it a try.
This exercise mainly targets your glutes (butt muscles), but will obviously work other muscles like your quads (front of thighs) and hamstrings (back of thighs), depending on which variation you choose to use.
Get those legs and thighs toned up with this workout! All you need is a bench or step – how about your stairs at home?
If you don’t have access to either of these, then just choose something that is stable and secure. Standing in front of the bench, lift one leg slowly, as high as possible, up onto it before bringing the other foot forward so that both feet meet on top.
Aim for 10 reps for each leg, then take a break and repeat if possible.
If this is too easy for you, then try the advanced variation, which is done by squatting down before standing back up again – just make sure to keep those knees bent!
You can also try raising one leg at a time to give yourself a little extra challenge. This is a great way to target different areas of your leg and buttock muscles, as well as improve your coordination and balance.
Get your heart rate up and burn calories with these simple exercises. It is an activity that can be done anywhere, at any time, with just a little persistence! All you have to do is lie flat on your back with your hands behind your head – so the bicycle starts to look like it’s peddling.
Start by pulling both feet off the ground, so they are raised in the air, then lift one leg up at a time while you keep them supported.
You can also try alternating between feet or alternate lifting one foot and then the other or both legs together. This exercise is great for toning your butt muscles (you guessed it!) but will also work other muscle groups like your hamstrings and glutes too!
Side bends are a simple exercise that targets your abdominal muscles as well as the lower back. The key with this one is to not use weights – it’s more about getting those muscles working and toned too!
To do a side bend, stand tall and relax the arms by your sides before lifting one arm. Then slowly bend to that side, feeling a stretch in that area before returning to starting position, then repeat with the other arm.
Aim for 10 reps on each side, then take a break and repeat if possible.
You can also try bending down from starting position so that you are bent over for 10 seconds at minimum before coming back up again. Remember to keep breathing steadily through this one, ensuring you control.
We’ve provided you with 10 exercises to get fit! It doesn’t matter what your fitness level is; these workouts are for everyone. Remember that muscle mass helps burn more calories and can help lower blood pressure, so it pays off in the long run if you work out regularly. Comment below on which exercise was your favorite or how often you work out.
Brenda Tillman is a Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Practitioner, a dedicated mom blogger, and a life enthusiast. She also has completed courses on Parenting Skills, Learning, and Education. She is married and is the proud mother of a boy and two girls. She loves being with her family and pets. She has been blogging for over five years now and enjoys sharing her thoughts on parenting, relationships, health & fitness as well as other topics that come up in life.