Workouts on the Go

by Joni Hyde
Whether you're out of town for an important business trip or your annual family vacation, there is no need to completely abandon your workout schedule. 

Here is a no excuse exercise routine you can do anywhere without any exercise equipment. First, warm up. Then perform one set of the three lower body exercises that you choose from the list.  Then perform the upper body exercises followed with the abdominal and back exercises.  Finish off with a stretch.  Complete 2 to 4 circuits of this routine for a great workout that you can take with you on the go.

Warm up first
Loosen up your muscles and get the blood flowing to prevent injury. Either jog in place, march in place, jump rope or do jumping jacks. Depending on your fitness level, this part of your workout should last at least 5 minutes and up to15 minutes for a real cardio burst.

Lower body
Choose 3 of the following exercises for lower body.

Kneel down onto knees and elbows with both feet flexed (toes pulled in). Kick up and out with one leg, squeezing the buttocks, extending leg straight out, keeping hips square to the ground during the movement. Bend knee in and return to start. 20 each side.

Lie on your back bent, feet flat on the floor. Extend the right leg out, keeping legs parallel and knees together. Press left heel into the ground as you lift the lower body up. Slowly lower. 20 each side. 

Stand about 12 - 18" away from a wall. Squat down, bending at the knees, lowering hips down no lower than knee level, keeping knees behind the toes, back leaning against the wall. Hold the squat for 10 seconds then stand up pressing through the heels. Relax for 5 seconds. Repeat 6 times. 

Stand with feet far apart, toes pointed outward. Hold onto a chair for balance. Bend your knees, lowering your hips toward the floor, keeping buttocks tucked under, knees pressing back. Feel a stretch in the inner thigh. Be sure that knees don't extend past your toes. Straighten knees. 20 times.

Sit down on the edge of a chair. Line up your heels right under your knees, with feet shoulder width apart, toes pointing straight ahead, arms raised straight up. Lift yourself up into a standing position by pressing through the heels, while simultaneously pulling down with arms. Sit back down, lifting arms and lowing torso as you sit, tapping buttocks onto the chair. Keep chest up, weight through the heels and knees behind the toes throughout the exercise. 20 times. 

Hold chair for balance. To find correct leg positioning :(Kneel down, step right leg forward, right heel directly above ankle, weight on the heel. Toes of left foot are pulled in. Then stand up. Legs should be shoulder width apart, back heel up. Shoulders back, chest up, abdominals tight.) Bend knees and lower hips to the floor stopping before back knee hits the floor, keeping front knee above ankle. Straighten knees without locking as you return to start. 20 each side. 

Upper Body
Choose either wall push-up or regular push-up and also do tricep dips

Place hands flat on wall, just outside shoulder width apart, at shoulder height. Stand at a distance so arms are fully extended. Bend elbows until chest is a few inches from wall. Keep abdominals tight, neck straight, back straight. Squeeze chest muscles as hand push you back to start. 15 times

Down on hands and knees, hands flat, just outside shoulder width and slightly forward, extend knees back as far as possible. Keeping abdomen tight, neck in line with spine, bend elbows and lower chest one fist distance from floor, aiming head right between hands, then push up to start, keeping elbows soft at the top. 20 times.

Sit on edge of chair with hands gripping the edge. Extend legs in front, with knees bent, feet flat on the floor. Extend your arms straight and move your buttocks up and off the chair. Bend your elbows directly behind you, and lower hips toward the floor, stopping before you feel any pressure in your shoulders. Keep buttocks close to the chair. Keep shoulders low and back. Push up until elbows are almost straight. 15 times 

Abs and Back
Lie on back with knees bent, heels close to body, pelvis titled slightly up, back flat on floor. Place fingertips touching back of head, or a towel behind head. Keeping elbows back, chin one fist distance off chest, focusing eyes up on an angle. Tighten abdominals, lift shoulder blades up and forward, and exhale contracting abdominals. Lower back down not resting head on mat. 20 times. 

Lie face down on floor, with legs straight and arms extended overhead, palms down, face down. Exhale as you lift your right arm and left leg simultaneously without arching your back. Hold for 2 seconds. Lower and repeat on other side lifting left arm and right leg simultaneously. 12 times alternating sides.

Spend between 5 to 10 minutes stretching all the muscles of your body. For complete instructions on stretches for the entire body, click here. Slowly lengthen the muscles until you feel a gentle stretch. Hold the position for 15 to 30 seconds. Release slowly.

Copyright 2000 by Joni Hyde. 
Joni Hyde is the mother of one child and a certified personal trainer specializing in women's fitness with over 13 years experience. For a complete home exercise routine under the guidance of a certified trainer, visit  Joni can be contacted at .