Many exercises are more suited for different age groups, abilities, sports, or merely to train particular muscle groups. Though there are four exercises that everyone should include in most, if not every, workout. These work many large muscle groups and the overall benefit is substantial.
Pushups may very well be the first exercise everyone learns as a kid and probably brings many different memories, but it is key to posture and upper-body strength. The main thing to remember, which may be different than what you may have learned, is to spread your feet a bit for extra stability and to maintain slow but steady movement throughout the range of motion. “Be sure and keep your back straight and hold at the top for a second before slowly lowering back down to the floor” advises cybersecurity student, and fitness aficionado, Edward Granlund.
Lunges work the lower body and provide strength training as well as stability and balance. You may do forward or reverse lunges, whichever is more comfortable. In either case, don’t bend either knee further than your comfort level and keep your upper body straight. As you gain strength and balance, you can even add a pair of dumbbells to the workout.
Squats, like lunges, work the lower body and help with core stability. Unlike the lunges, squats work both sets of quads and glutes at the same time. As you learned to do with lunges, don’t bend your knees too far and keep your balance by sitting back a bit more than you may have thought. Again, add weights as your strength increases.
Planks are similar to pushups, but you keep your body in the full up position. More so than pushups, planks work your core, abs, and back. Rather than pushing yourself up, you are just holding everything flat and straight. In the beginning, rest on your elbows and knees. Start with reps of a few seconds and build up to at least 30 seconds as your endurance and comfort grows. As you progress, you can get off your knees and eventually, off the elbows, until you are in proper plank position.
The added benefit to all four of these exercises is that they can be done anywhere and at any time. “You don’t need any equipment or to even be in a gym. Shut the door to your office and crank out a few of these during your workday” says fitness enthusiast, Edward Granlund. Incorporate these after your morning stretching set to wake up those muscles. Regardless of when you do these four core routines, make them an essential part of your exercise regimen.