Hitting the gym could easily transform your body in a lean, fat-burning machine, but let’s be real, would you really want to leave behind your cozy bed just so you can become so sweaty, breathless and exhausted that you’ll collapse before showering?
We get it, working out isn’t as fun as it appears to be in those late night infomercials, but truthfully, a proper diet and daily exercise is key to shedding the pounds and keeping them off. But if you’re just too tired (or dare we say lazy), don’t fret — we asked several celebrity trainers how you can burn some calories without paying for a gym membership.
Ready to get physical, or at least thinking about it? Read on and discover new ways you can push yourself to exercise a bit:
Do the Superman
Several laps in the swimming pool can give you toned arms and legs, but if you don’t have access to one, or the weather is simply too chilly for an attempt, you can still defy the laws of your love handles by doing this basic arm and leg exercise. “This is similar to swimming in the pool and control is key to doing it right,” says personal trainer Lacey Stone, who has sculpted the bodies of Jessica Alba and Amanda Seyfried. “Lay on your belly, extending your arms and legs straight out in front of you. Slowly alternate your arms and legs in a flutter movement, continuing for 30 seconds. Rest and repeat for a total of four times.”
Try a To-Do List
Get bored easily? Fitness expert Kathy Kaehler, who has trained Julia Roberts and Cindy Crawford, says jotting down your workout as a to-do list will prompt you to actually complete it, all while changing things up whenever you notice a similar pattern. “There is something about checking off things that gives people great pride and relief. Treat exercises the same way,” explains Kaehler. Need inspiration? Check out her to-do list below:
- Walk around the block.
- Take the stairs five times.
- Wall sit for one minute.
- Do 30 crunches noon and night.
- Do the same with pushups.
- Lunge down a hallway.
- Jump over a line or piece of tape for a minute.
- Hop on one foot for a minute and repeat on the other side.
Brush Up on Aerobics
“With aerobics, you can lose weight without drastically reducing the calories you consume or sacrificing important nutritional needs,” says model and trainer to “The Real Housewives of New Jersey” Jolene Matthews. “One reason for this is that aerobics not only elevate your metabolism while you’re exercising, but it can also keep it elevated even after you’re done, depending on how long and how strong you exercise." To jumpstart your energy and achieve lean legs, Matthew advises to go up and down a flight of stairs five times. And if you’re really lazy, grab a yoga mat, supportive footwear and an aerobics DVD to break a sweat without stepping outdoors.
Twist it Out
Struggling to zip up your favorite skinny jeans? Nutritionist Mark Macdonald and author of “Body Confidence” recommends a twisting exercise that eliminates the dreaded muffin top. “Start sitting down with your knees and arms bent. Your back and feet are off the ground,” he states. “Twist your knees in one direction and your upper body the opposite direction, while keeping your core tight. Continue twisting back and forth, repeating the motion for a consistent 45 seconds.”
Look Out for Commercial Breaks
“In a typical hour-long television show there are five 3-minute breaks,” says Daniel Meng, the “trainer to the country stars” who has been working with Kenny Chesney for 12 years. “That’s 15 minutes of useless commercial time you could use to exercise. Break each 3-minute commercial break into three exercises,” says Meng, who recommends the following routine:
- Jog in place for 45 seconds. Rest for 15 seconds.
- Plank for 45 seconds. Rest for 15 seconds.
- Squats for a minute.
- Mountain climbers for 45 seconds. Rest for 15 seconds.
- Lunges for 45 seconds. Rest for 14 seconds.
- Pushups for a minute.
Make Use of the Morning
The morning is a great time to break a sweat because your body is refreshed enough to take on the day. Model-turned-trainer Kristin McGee suggest burning some extra calories in the a.m., which will spark some much-needed energy before heading to work. “Do some hip bridges in bed and 20 hip raises," she says. "When brushing your teeth, do heel raises 20 times. While checking your phone messages, do wall squats.” If you’re daring enough, do jumping jacks while catching up on the morning news. End the workout with the downward dog yoga move to stretch your muscles.
Scissors for Flatter Abs
Stone says the “scissor” is great for targeting your core quickly and effectively. “Just be sure to keep a flat back and control the movement with your abs rather than your legs or arms,” she says. Here’s how:
- Lie flat on your back with your arms at your sides, palms pressing into the floor.
- Bring both legs straight up towards the ceiling, engaging your abs and pressing your lower back into the ground.
- Keeping abs pulled in and lower back on the ground, slowly lower your left leg until its a few inches above the floor, then scissor your legs, lifting your right leg up. This completes one rep.
- Do 15-20 reps.
Movie Night, Anyone? Have an elliptical or treadmill collecting dust? Fitness experts agree you can easily make use of the equipment while watching a movie at the same time. You’ll not only squeeze in an extra routine during the day, but this will work out your entire body in the comfort of your living room.
Omit Flabby Arms
“Believe it or not, the tricep dip is the number one way to tone your arms and shoulders,” says Matthews. Here’s how to dip like a pro:
- Sit on the very edge of the couch.
- Pick up toes, balancing yourself using the heels of your foot.
- Fingertips pointed forward, lift your entire body off the seat.
- Lower your body for two counts until your bottom hits the floor.
- Rise back up to a full arm extension. Never sit back down until the set is complete.
- Do 3 sets of 20.
“White sitting in traffic, engage and release your glutes 20 times in a row, holding your butt tighter for 10 seconds and releasing for five seconds,” says Stone. “Rest for 45 seconds and repeat.” If you really want to challenge yourself, park a stop away from your usual space and walk to work. Skip the elevator and use the stairs instead.