Spring is here!
It’s a time for renewal. A time for many to travel–kids out, get out! To be outdoors as much as we can.
I have always believed in natural health–in sunshine, fresh air, natural movement, minimally-processed food, and proper rest.
As weather permits, I believe in getting outside for my workouts as much as possible. It beats a dark, smelly gym! Good for the soul too.
And thankfully, there really isn’t much needed to get in a good workout; other than, as exercise minimalist Danny Kavadlo has said, “Something to step up on, something to hang from, and something heavy.”
Many years ago, I took a cruise with family to the Eastern Caribbean. It was great! For exercise equipment, I packed my yoga mat–that’s it! And that’s all I needed. I did yoga in the mornings right inside my cabin, I walked around the ship and islands that we visited, I swam in the beautiful, tropical, turquoise water, ran some on the treadmill in the ship’s gym, and did some post-cardio stretching. That was plenty and I never missed a beat.
I train clients who travel the world, and I’ve taught them to use little more than their own body weight to strengthen, add muscle in perfect proportions, and increase their mobility–while enjoying some of the most beautiful locations in the world. After all, why go to a gym when you’re in paradise?
But you don’t have to be at some exotic location to do an effective, yet minimalist, workout. Your own private “paradise” or a local park will do just fine.
So what does it take, using minimal equipment, to get a good workout in?
#1. Warm Up
A warm up just does what it says, it warms up the body for harder work. This can be accomplished with movement, joint rotation, bands, or other basic equipment. But you don’t need any equipment at all. I’ve created a video called Anywhere Warmups, which will give you an idea of the kind of movements that lend themselves nicely to a warm up.
#2 Body Sculpting Movements
Note: If you are elderly, weak, or injured, proceed only with the level of work that your heart can handle, and that builds strength without irritating muscles, tendons, or joints. Do an easy warm up set with twenty repetitions of the exercises below, and then do a work set of 15 before building up to more. Don’t push it to the absolute limit. Always leave 1-2 repetitions “in the tank.”
- Horizontal pressing movement (i.e.: wall push ups)
Horizontal pulling movement (i.e.: Australian pull ups)
Vertical pressing movement (i.e.: pike push ups). Only descend as far as you can push back up without strain.
Vertical pulling movement (i.e.: assisted pull ups). If using a chair to assist you, be sure it can support your weight, and maintain balance at all times.
Core contraction (i.e.: bent leg raise)
Core extension (i.e.: bridging)
Lower body pressing movement (i.e: squat)
The above movements can be done in a “circuit” (complete one exercise at a time, going to the next one without resting if possible). This provides a cardio element to the workout. As you get stronger, you can add circuit “rounds.”
#3: Cardio: You can add a simple cardio element such as walking, hiking, brisk walking, cycling, or another exercise. If you’re not in great shape, again, start slow, and try walking a half-mile for starters. You can make it more brisk as your heart and lungs strengthen, and you can increase your distance, grade, and even weight as you get continue to get stronger. The late, great natural bodybuilder, Steve Reeves, created a system called Powerwalking, after getting injured on the set of one of his movies, and he used the system to keep in excellent condition even as an older man.
#4: “Cool Down”: At the end of your workout, perform some light stretches. You are counteracting the concentric motion that goes hand-in-hand with performing strength exercises. Five minutes is plenty. You can do some of the same moves I showed you above in “Anywhere Warmups,” but this time instead of using motion, hold stretches for ten seconds at a time.
Our 12-Week Transformation Program goes into detail, showing you how to do workouts based on the principles above, with little or no equipment and no gym, to achieve major improvements to your strength, appearance, and mobility, which becomes so crucial as you age. To find out more or to get a FREE, No Obligation Consultation, GO HERE.
My e-book, GREEK PHYSIQUE: The Simple, Satisfying Way to Sculpt Your Body–Even if You’re Old, Weak, or Broken Down, is an excellent, inexpensive resource which will guide you in building a strong, attractive, functional body.
So what are you waiting for? Spring is here–lets’ make the most of it!
To Your Health and Fitness,
Founder, Greek Physique™, LLC
Patrick Rooney is the Owner of GREEK PHYSIQUE™, LLC a Personal Training company located in Middle Tennessee, which specializes in body sculpting for men and women. Patrick is certified through the National Association for Fitness Certification (NAFC). Patrick is available for Personal Training and Lifestyle Coaching, both in person and via phone and Skype. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.