Don't have the time, desire or money to go to the gym? We have a solution for you: a 10-minute, calisthenics workout. Calisthenics are a form of exercise that rely entirely on body weight. Pushups and sit-ups are classic examples of calisthenics.
And here's the best part: they're simple, effective, and they can be done anywhere—even in your office cubicle if you manage a little break.
Three Sets of Pushups (4 minutes)
Few calisthenics workouts are as well-known and simple as the push-up. However, most beginners probably don't realize that pushups are an excellent, full-body exercise as well. Not only do they work your chest, but they work your back and stomach—and even the leg muscles too.
Sadly, many people who do push-ups don't do them correctly, so before you jump into a workout routine which uses this classic, calisthenics exercise, let's go over the basics:
First, there is the proper form. Your hands should be a little outside of your shoulders and your body should be at a straight, 45-degree angle to the floor.
Now for the movement: slowly lower yourself until your nose lightly touches the ground. Your back should still be completely straight, only now it should be parallel to the ground. As soon as your nose touches, push yourself back up. It should take about one second to lower yourself to the ground and one second to push yourself back up. You can also do pushups from your knees if you can't do them by supporting your body on the balls of your feet.
Do three sets of push-ups. Start with 30, then lower the number of pushups you do in increments of 10, resting for 30 seconds in between each set. By the time you're finished, you will have done 60 pushups.
Three Sets of Sit-Ups (3 minutes)
Sit-ups are another classic calisthenic workout. For this move, sit down, bend your legs at about a 45-degree angle, then slowly roll your yourself down onto your back one vertebra at a time. Your hands can either be down by your side or behind your head. However, if they're behind your head, make sure you don't yank on your head. Everything above and below your abs should be relaxed.
For the movement, slowly sit up (again, one vertebra at a time) until you reach your legs, then repeat.
Start at 30 just like you did with the push-ups, but this time, go down in increments of five. That will give you a total of 75 sit-ups.
Three Sets of Squats (3 minutes)
Many people, even ardent workout enthusiasts, have a sad tendency to skip leg day. You can avoid falling into that trap by getting into the habit of working your legs when you're a beginner.
Squats are an excellent way to develop a toned set of legs without the need for an expensive weight machine. The exercise works your glutes, your quads and your hamstrings.
Like all calisthenic exercises, squats are simple, but can hurt you if you don't do them properly. To get the most out of the squat, stand straight with your feet shoulder-width apart and your hands on your thighs. Next, squat and bend your arms slowly, stopping when your elbows get to your knees. Now, slowly go back up to the start position.
Start with a set of 20 and go down in increments of five (set of 15, set of 10, and so on). This will give you a total of 45 squats.