Simple Exercises to Make Workouts Fun and Effective

We’re all trying to stick with our New Years’ resolutions for as long as we can. For those who wrote “exercise and stay in shape,” exercise can be done using everyday objects such as a chair or a couple of textbooks.

For quick squats to work out your thighs, stand in front of a chair and slowly begin to sit down but stop right above the chair. Straighten up slowly and repeat. You can put your arms straight out in front of you to help keep your balance too.

A thigh and hip exercise is’s aptly named “hip hikers” that’s easily done with the materials you already have. Stack a couple of textbooks (or anything stable) to a height of four to six inches and stand next to it. Place one leg on it, keeping your knee bent and slowly straighten the leg to raise yourself up. Hold it for five seconds and then lower yourself back down to the ground. Switch legs to repeat.

If working the abdominal is your main focus, sit down on the chair with a straight back, knees bent slightly past your feet, which are firmly against the ground. While exhaling, slowly raise your knees, still keeping your feet parallel to the ground. Inhale when placing your feet back down. Repeat.
For arms, do simple bicep curls with any object that you are able to lift without injuring yourself, such as a grocery bag. Just grab onto the handle and lift it up to your chest, keeping your wrist straight and your upper arms tight to your torso. Repeat with both arms.

The benefits of working out far outweigh the cons. Besides gaining muscle and losing unwanted weight, exercising increases the production of seratonin, a neurotransmitter that regulates your sleep patterns, mood and appetite.
If you still need some extra motivation, a workout buddy and upbeat music will keep you going. Exercising is a whole lot easier if integrated with everyday activities: take the stairs, not the elevator, walk to destinations instead of driving and don’t sit down the entire day.

Get ready to cross “exercise more” off your list.