If you’re a fan of going to the gym, it must have felt like the lockdown restrictions robbed you of your ability to keep fit. Yet now that restrictions are easing, a lot of people are staying away from the gym. Some perhaps are still fearful of being in a confined space with lots of other people. But others have come to realise that actually, you don’t need to go to the gym to stay fit. That actually, with the right equipment at home, or just a simple routine, you can stay fit and healthy all summer long.
Our fitness team has put together a simple outdoor routine that you can do both on your own, or with your regular gym buddies. You can do the basic routine or upgrade it to include one of Thane’s genius fitness machines. Each exercise is designed to target different areas of the body, offering you a more focused workout.
The simple way to target your inner thighs, quads, calves and glutes
Stand tall with your feet together, then bend your knees and hop sideways to the right, landing on the ball of your right foot. Then, without putting your other foot on the ground, leap back to the left. The idea is to keep hopping from your left leg to your right leg and vice versa. Start with 10 hops per side. If that’s too easy, up it to 20.
Garden bench dips
This is a neat little exercise for your triceps, shoulders and back
Start by sitting on a garden bench with your hands holding onto the edge of the bench, either side of your hips. Slide your bum off the bench so that you’re supporting yourself with your hands. Then bend your elbows to lift yourself up and down in front of the bench. You should feel the strain on the back of your arms and lower shoulders. Start by doing 5, then move up to 10 or even 15 reps.
Garden bench push-ups
Flip over and the same movement will work your inner arms
Place your hands shoulder-width apart on your garden bench. Stretch your legs out behind you until fully extended. Next, bend your arms and lower your chest towards the bench. Then push yourself back up again. Try to breathe in as you go down and breathe out as you push up.
Start by doing 5, then 10, then 15 working your way up to 20 reps.
Want a more complete workout? Give the WonderCore Smart a go. This ingenious compact fitness machine works your muscles on the way up and the way down. It’s designed to target your entire core, from your upper, middle and lower abs to your obliques – with 6 simple but effective exercises. Discover the WonderCore Smart here.
Kerbside tightrope walk
This is a great way of improving your balance and working your leg muscles
When you’re walking along the pavement, move to the kerb on the roadside. Imagine that the line of kerb stones are a tightrope. With your arms out to the sides for balance, put one foot in front of the other and take 10 steps forward. When you’re done, turn on the balls of your feet and do 10 steps in the opposite direction.
This is one of those exercises that’s harder than it looks. Start by doing 1 minute, then up it to 2 minutes and then 3 minutes.
This is a good workout for your core, obliques, glutes, upper back, shoulders
Stand with your right side against something solid, like the side of your house. Hold your arms out to the sides, shoulder height, bending your elbows so that your hands are in front of you. Tense up your tummy muscles, then bring your right knee towards your left elbow. Return to a standing position then repeat the exercise, but this time raising your left knee towards your right elbow.
The trick here is to get your knees as high as you can while still keeping your balance. Start with 15 reps per side and see how you get on.
This challenging exercise works wonders on your abs
Ideally you need monkey bars for this, so either use your children’s climbing frame in your back garden or visit your local playground. Start by taking hold of the monkey bars and let yourself hang. As you breathe out, bend your knees up to your chest, then inhale slowly as you lower your knees back down again.
This is harder than it looks – start with 5 then see if you can get to 10.
Too tough? One brilliant device for making ab crunches easier is the Ab Doer 360. It’s like your own portable gym that combines ab-toning and muscle-shaping with aerobics in a fun, easy exercise called Abdobics. Not only does the Ab Doer 360 burn total body fat, it builds and boosts aerobic stamina, enhances muscle tone and coordination, and improves your core and back strength, too. So, you get a slimmer waistline without ever having to get down on the cold hard floor to do a crunch. Discover why over 3 million people in more 80 countries trust the Ab Doer 360 here.
Want a full-body workout? Take a look at the Orbitrek X17 multipath cross-trainer. Unlike standard bikes, ellipticals and treadmills, the Orbitrek X17 offers 17 ever-switching burn paths, designed to help you burn more calories. It’s like doing 5 exercises on one simple machine. Put simply, the Orbitrek X17 mimics the movements you would make when cycling, running on a treadmill, stepping up and down on a step machine, climbing or working out on an elliptical machine. Discover what makes the Orbitrek X17 such a hit with both regular gym-goers and beginners alike here.