When it comes to staying fit for life, there are a series of basic moves that you should work into your daily routine. These uncomplicated, traditional moves are considered classics for a reason: They keep you healthy and in shape, and are easy to do every day. The top five moves may be pretty standard, but each one possesses a ton of variations that will help spice up your routines. All you need is five short minutes to incorporate these functional moves into your busy schedule. They'll boost your energy, your confidence and your metabolism in no time!
1. Pushup: It doesn't matter if you can't muster up a full-on pushup! Feel free to start on your knees and work your way up to your total bodyweight. Remember to keep your back flat as you lower your body toward the ground to avoid any back injuries. Ready to boost your pushup into high gear? Take a look at these variations.
2. Squat: Okay, we know squats probably aren't your favorite go-to exercise, but they are a fantastic way to sculpt those glutes, hamstrings and quads! We'll have those legs runway-ready in no time! Keep your feet hip-width apart and try to position your weight over your heels as you sink into your squat. Rocking forward over your toes will place more pressure on your joints and lower back, so don't do it. If you're looking to spice up your squats, give these 12 variations a go!
3. Jumping Jacks: Crank up the heat (and your heart rate) with this awesome plyometric move that will whip your butt into shape in no time! Adding a little cardio to your day works wonders for your health, and give you a little adrenaline boost to get through that mid-afternoon slump. Click here to see instructions for jumping jacks, and click here to take them to the next level.
4. Bridge: Bridges are an amazing way to tone and tighten your glutes. Plus, there are a ton of variations if the traditional version isn't cutting it for you! Feel free to check out some of our favorites like the glute bridge march, the leg lift in bridge or the butterfly bridge for even more of a workout. Here are instructions for the regular glute bridge.
5. Plank: Nothing targets those core and oblique muscles quite like a plank! Begin by raising yourself into a plank position, with your weight evenly distributed between your hands and feet. Make sure your arms are placed directly below your shoulders, and keep that spine as straight as possible. Here's more info. When you're ready to advance, check out these 13 plank variations.
Completing these basic exercises on a regular basis can work wonders for your overall health. They can help you sleep soundly every night, build strength and endurance, and increase circulation by encouraging blood flow to your muscles. Yo can stay in shape your entire life with these exercises! Want more information? Check out The Active Times.