Last Updated on April 7, 2016 by Michael Brockbank
For those who are interested about my beginners exercise routine, here it is. This is the basic home workout that I started with when I was losing more than 10 pounds per month. If it wasn’t for my lack in effort during the holidays in 2014, I would have long since met my goals of being under 200 pounds. This just goes to show you that healthy living is a life choice that needs to be maintained.
My Basic Home Workout Exercise Routine
I know everyone has their cup of tea when it comes to getting exercise. Some experts say this, and others say that. This workout routine is simply what helped me. This isn’t saying that it’s the ultimate in home exercise, but it’s what improved my lifestyle in many ways.
I didn’t want to focus on one muscle group at a time like many experts do. I usually leaned more towards a total workout of every muscle in one session. I am not trying to bulk up or be as shredded as coleslaw, but I do want to add strength to my body and lose a bunch of weight. Here is what my typical basic workout week looks like. I use 10 pound dumbbells in everything I do at home – because those are the only weights I own.
During the first week, I alternate from weight training to cardio every other day. Here is what my weighted routine is like:
- 4 Sets: 20 reps of dumbbell curls
- 4 Sets: 20 reps of dumbbell military presses
- 4 Sets: 1 minute of standing toe touches
- 4 Sets: 20 reps of dumbbell flies
- 4 Sets: 20 reps of dumbbell floor presses
- 4 Sets: 10 reps of lying leg raises
This usually takes me about 30 minutes to do. If you grind through the workout, it can be done is as little as 20. If you haven’t lifted weights in the past, I’d suggest using a lighter unit. No one will judge you if you have to start with two or five pound dumbbells. The workout above made my chest and shoulders sore for several days afterward. Then again, I am very out of shape. You can modify this any way you like. Using weights regularly has increased my overall strength. It’s amazing by how easy certain chores are around the house after using the dumbbells over a period of a few weeks.
I do the standing toe touches because it stretches out the hamstrings and firms the lower back. I found that this has been greatly influential when playing golf or visiting the driving range. Putting the ball on the tee doesn’t seem as grueling as it did before.
The lying leg raises come into play as it works the abdominal muscles. This has also been a boon to a variety of things around the house and is helping me eliminate some of the tire I have around my gut.
I start the week with more weights than cardio. This has been greatly beneficial for me in a variety of activities around the house. For example, 50-pound bags of dog food feel lighter and I noticed last night that picking up a 24-pack of pop was effortless. Do the routine mentioned earlier. Remember, you can adapt this to fit your personal physique.
Tuesday is one of my cardio days. I’ll usually spend at least 30 minutes doing some kind of activity on my feet. Over time, I increase the minutes or do several sets of activity throughout the day. However, I play a lot of the Xbox 360 Kinect while wearing weighted gloves. This increases the amount of calories I burn throughout the game pay.
Even though you may be sore from the home workout on Monday, it’s time to do another weight set. Personally, I found that continuing with dumbbell workouts doesn’t feel as bad as I thought it would. Every session seems to get easier and more tolerable. Do the same workout that you did on Monday to keep adding strength, tone and endurance to your body.
This is another cardio day. You can do any activity you want as long as you can work up a sweat and get the heart rate going. Walking, riding, swimming, playing the Xbox – anything will do as long as you’re physically active. This is where you’ll build the most endurance and probably burn the most calories. I find that playing the Kinect for 30 minutes will burn more calories than my weight workout.
Time to hit the weights again. Even though you’re arms may feel like rubber, you need to push through the discomfort. For me, the pain goes away with the more times I did this workout. Eventually, it’ll start to seem easy – which is when you start thinking about increasing the exercises.
I like to spend my weekends doing more cardio work than anything. I enjoy riding my bike around the neighborhood with my children or heading out to the golf course. Do something that gets you on your feet and moving about. Why not head out to the park for some family Frisbee? If you are single, you can always go for a nice walk through the city and take in the sights. It’s all about keeping your body moving.
A lot of people like to rest on Sunday. I would rather be golfing. Usually, I like playing the same games on Sunday that I did on Saturday. This is especially true since I tend to have more time throughout the weekend. However, you don’t have to push through like I do. If you want to have a day of rest, that is up to you.
Increasing the Home Workout
Every two weeks of this regular routine, increase your weights or reps. For me, I increased the reps on the weights by two or three. It may not sound like a lot, but it delivers a nice and easy transition to keep the strain on your arms consistent. Here are a few ways I increase the workout after a week or two of constant activity:
If you like the cardio, increase the amount of time you spend. Set personal goals for active minutes and try to surpass them each week. Just remember not to over do it. Pushing yourself too hard can easily land you in the emergency room.
Increase the weight of the home workout if things start to feel too easy. Unfortunately, I am too poor to buy my own weights most of the time. However, we do have a rec center membership and I have increased the amount of weight I lift using the machines – which is something I’ll cover later.
You can always increase the repetitions you do throughout the routine. Instead of 20 reps with the dumbbells, increase it to 25. The more reps you’re able to accomplish, the greater the workout and calorie burn.
Add New Exercises
When I want to get more of a workout on Monday, Wednesday and Friday, I’ll add in new exercises to increase the intensity of the routine. I’ll go into greater detail about this in the moderate home workout. You can add things like planks, sit-ups, jumping jacks or anything else that comes to mind. Remember, any addition to the workout will benefit your fitness.
This is my personal starter’s home workout routine. I don’t expect anyone to really follow this to the letter. This is just how I began my fitness journey and it made an incredible impact in my life in several ways. Not only did I feel better than I ever had after two months, but everything that required strength just seemed to be easier. Change this up how ever you wish, just keep your body moving if you want to optimize physical fitness from home.