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Body Weight Training: Pros and Cons

By Sarah Baker 

Are you looking for a new way to work out and get in shape? Have I got an exercise for you! Body weight training is the newest exercise on the scene. Body weight training are strength training exercises that do not require free weights or equipment of any kind; your own weight provides the resistance and helps to build strength. 

Pros and Cons of Body Weight Training:



You may wonder what’s so great about body weight training. The answer is so much! 

Pros:

1. They offer efficient workouts. Since there is no equipment involved, it’s easier to transition from one exercise to the next, thus allowing a shorter rest time and allowing you to burn more calories.



2. It’s cardio and strength training combined. You are able to do quick cardio between your strength exercises. Try 1 minute burpees or a set jumping jacks. This will allow you to keep your heart pumping while developing muscle and strength. 

3. You burn fat fast. Even if you are only able to do a few minutes of bodyweight circuit training, it can really rev up your body’s metabolism. 

4. There is truly something for everyone. You can easily modify exercises for your own fitness level by adding and taking away reps or speeding up and slowing down. 

5. It improves your core strength and flexibility. Completing these exercises through a full range of motions can be good for improved posture, can help to insure your joints more freely, and can reduce the chance of exercise related injury. It can also improve your athletic performance. 

6. It’s really convenient. You don’t need any equipment, so you can literally squeeze a workout in wherever you are. It’s a great hotel room workout for travelers. You can also do a workout at work it you are feeling some extra stress.

7. It reduces boredom. A lot of people stop working out because they get bored quickly. With these exercises, there are countless options and variations, so you’ll never get bored.

8. It’s inexpensive. Since there is no equipment required, you don’t need a gym membership and can do it anywhere, therefore the cost of this workout it absolutely FREE!

9. Results! Results are amplified because of the core strength that is being developed. Research shows that improved core strength gained through body weight training translates into inspired strength gains throughout the entire body. 



Cons:

The only potential con of body weight training is that since you use only your own body weight, the weight you lift will never be greater than your own weight. This can be difficult for some who want to achieve a certain level of intensity. Adding additional weights or altering the leverage point can help to add to the intensity. 



Exercises: 

Here are some examples of body weight exercises and the areas that they work to get you started. Just remember, like in every type of exercise, make sure that you warm up before you begin your workout and cool down after. 

1. Push Ups. They work your chest, triceps, and shoulders.

2. Handstand Push Ups. They work your shoulders, trapezius, and triceps.

3. Planche. They work your full body.

4. Dips. They work your arms, specifically the triceps, chest, and back.

5. Plank. They work your core (abs, back, and shoulders).

6. Sit Ups. They work your abs and hip flexors.

7. Crunches. They work your abs.

8. Russian Twist. They work your abs, especially your obliques.

9. Leg Raises. They work your abs and hip flexors.
10. L-sit. This works your obliques and arms, specifically triceps.

11. V-sit. This works your obliques and arms, specifically biceps, brachialis, and abs.

12. Pull Ups. They work your upper back, specifically rear deltoid, trapezius, erector spinae, latissimus dorsi.

13. Muscle Ups. They work your upper back, specifically rear deltoid, trapezius, erector spinae, latissimus dorsi.

14. Human Flag. This works your abs and shoulders.

15. Bridge. This works your back, specifically deep spinal muscles, arms, specifically triceps, upper legs, and increases flexibility.

16. Hyperextension. This works your lower back and erector spinae.

17. Squats. They work your legs.

18. Calf Raises. They work your calf muscles.

If you’re anything like me, you want to work out, but there is always an obstacle in the way. For me, I get bored quickly by doing the same thing over and over. I feel like all the gyms close to me are too expensive and actually too far away. I’m not a big fan of the gym anyway, there are too many people there to stare at me as I do everything wrong. My biggest excuse is that I just don’t have time. With body weight training, my excuses are mute. I can do it in the comfort of my own home or in my backyard if I want to. This erases most of my excuses because I don’t even have to deal with a gym at this point. Plus, with so many variations, I can mix it up every day if I want to to keep it fresh. I can also squeeze in this exercise whenever and wherever. So Fashionistas, if you want to get in shape, lose the excuses, join me! Let’s do this together! 

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