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At home workout ‘equipment’ alternatives

For those with limited equipment options at home, here is a list of ideas for using things you may find around your house or apartment.

Items With Handles (Barbell, Kettlebell or Dumbbell Alternatives):

  • Gallon of OJ / milk / water
  • Laundry detergent
  • Basket / laundry basket
  • Buckets (most likely plastic)
  • Case of water
  • Paint can
  • Wheelbarrow

One of the best reasons to use these items is you can control how heavy or light they are. Items with handles are great for “pull” movements like bent-over rows, high pulls, lateral and front raises, bicep curls and deadlifts. Objects with handles are also perfect for farmer’s carries, lunge variations, cleans, snatches and step-ups.

Items Without Handles (More Alternative Weights):

  • Tub of protein or other supplement
  • Water bottles, all sizes, filled
  • Canned foods
  • Bag of rice / beans / potatoes / flour
  • Bag of pet food / pet supplies

Objects without handles can also be used for some of the “pull” movements listed above, but in general they are great for “push” exercises as well as adding weight for squat or lunge variations. For example, try putting one of the bag items on your shoulder or holding it in front of your chest to add weight for lunges or squats.

Filled water bottles and canned foods of all sizes are great for pressing overhead and bench press variations. Using a tub of protein or other supplement of sturdy nature can be great for push-up variations if you have two of the same size. And let’s not forget about the coveted/loathed ab exercises! Weighted sit-ups, Russian twists, plank pull-throughs, v-ups… how about a side plank while holding a filled water bottle up towards the ceiling with your free hand?!

Miscellaneous Other Things to Workout With:

  • Large towels
  • Backpacks (filled)
  • Books
  • Steps / benches / stools
  • Brooms/rakes or anything with a long handle

This small but mighty list can be used to make everything mentioned above even more challenging. Large towels are great for stepping on and pulling through as if to mimic a heavy deadlift. Time under tension here will get you sweating in no time. Filled backpacks are great for adding to everyday movements like walking, running, squats, step-ups and all variations of lunges and jumps. Backpacks are also a simple way to add weight to push-ups.  Finally, you don’t need a heavy barbell to feel those overhead squats.  Grab a broom handle (or a large tree branch) and focus on a nice slow, controlled descent.  Hold the bottom of the squat for 3 seconds and then stand up.  

And if that’s not enough to keep you entertained, ask your coach for more ideas! The original article is from the Whoop blog.  Check it out here.  Does anyone else at JCFit use a Whoop strap?  If so, let me know and we can create a JCFit Group!

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