July 16, 2009

Exercising on a Budget

Years ago, I didn't have access to a gym or my own exercise equipment and I was bound and determined to figure out a way for me to still be able to lift even though I didn't have the budget to go make any purchases right away. Since then I've come across some friends and clients who were in that same position, and I could relate to their feelings of frustration! I shared those exercise failures and triumphs I had experienced and showed them some moves to try at home.

That time seems so long ago...like, almost 10 years ago. (Does anybody know an exercise to make time slow down???)

I've modified a few of those exercises over the years, figuring out what works and what doesn't. You can use inexpensive items commonly found around the house to help strengthen your muscles and get your heart rate up, but I posted my favorite one below, along with some exercises. Use these exercises separately or as part of a full body program.

Gallon of water. You know, the kind that have a handle on them and look like a plastic milk jug. Fill them with water or sand and weigh them to get an accurate measurement. Wa-la: homemade dumbbells.

walking lunges, holding H2O gallons in each hand
calf raises on stairs holding H2O gallon(s)
chest flies, bench press (use H2O gallons while lying on a bench, a bunch of pillows under your back, or the floor)
bicep curls, triceps extensions, shoulder press; all using H2O gallons

mountain climbers
jumping jacks

Just a few ideas to get you started. A few.

Do you have any modified equipment you've put together? As great (and cheap) as modified equipment can be, remember there are sometimes issues with safety. Not just any box can be used as a step box; those need to be big and sturdy enough to distribute the weight that's being placed upon it. If it's not sturdy enough, and you happen to step on the wrong part of the box, you'll fall. I've done it, and it's not pretty. So be careful when you attempt to make a piece of exercise equipment, but never give up. Something is bound to work!