Let’s face it, the freshman (or sophomore, or junior, or senior) 15 can sneak up on you all too easily if exercising is not a part of your regular routine. But between studying, snoozing, partying, procrastinating, and worrying about where your next meal is coming from, what typical college student has time to get to the gym on the reg these days? Well, sorry to break it to you but the “full-time student” excuse is no longer a valid get-out-of-gym-free card – there are workout moves you can do that don’t require a gym or any equipment.
Working out in a dorm or apartment is something that any student can do, even in the most cramped of living spaces. So the next time you feel the need to squeeze in a quick workout but don’t feel like trekking all the way to the gym, have no fear! Take a short (and productive) study break that’ll get have you burning calories and boost your mood.
Here are 10 simple exercises you can do with no special equipment, and without even having to leave the confines of your dorm room!
1. Jumping Jacks
Elevate your heart rate in no time with this classic move. 10 minutes of jumping jacks can burn close to 100 calories!
2. High Knees
Make sure you bring your knees up all the way to your chest for maximum results. If you’re not out of breath after a minute or two, you’re not going fast enough! Go as fast as you can for 1 minute and then rest for 10 seconds. Repeat 3 times.
1. Lateral Textbook Raise
Who needs weights when you have textbooks? Pick up your heaviest study materials and lift them! Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart, grab your books in front of you with one or both hands (palms facing down) depending on how large and heavy they are, slowly raise the books up to shoulder level, then lower back down. Repeat for 3 sets of 15.
2. Water Bottle Tricep Press
Fill a large water bottle (like a 64oz Nalgene) with water. Grip the bottle with both hands and raise it above your head. Slowly lower the bottle behind your head and raise it back up again keeping your elbows as close to your ears as you can. Do 3 sets of 20.
Start a little fitness challenge for yourself by timing your wall-sits! See if you can hold it just a little bit longer each day.
2. Chair Squat
If you can, adjust the height of your desk chair so that when you sit in it, your knees are bent at a 90-degree angle and your thighs are parallel to the floor. Stand up a step or two in front of the chair with your feet shoulder width apart. Hold your arms out in front of you at shoulder height with your palms facing down, and squat your butt back towards the chair until it just barely touches the seat. Come back up and repeat for 3 sets of 20.
1. Bicycle Crunches
Just like a normal crunch, but instead of just coming up, bring your pedal your legs as if you were on a bicycle, and as each knee comes up to your chest reach your opposite elbow towards it. Do as many as you can in 30 seconds, rest for 10, and then repeat!
2. Standing Crunches
Want to work your abs but don’t have enough floor space? No worries! Stand with your feet just wider than shoulder width apart and clasp your hands behind your head as if you were doing regular sit-ups. Crunch one leg up towards your chest, and as you do bring your opposite elbow down and across your body to meet it. Do as many as you can, alternating sides, for 1 minute, rest for 10 seconds, and repeat. (Bonus: turn this move into a full body workout by throwing in a squat every time you bring your leg down!)
1. Spider-Man Pushups
This variation on a classic pushup is great because it works your arms, legs, core, back, and obliques. Get into a regular pushup position. As you lower your body, bring one leg up the side of your body so that your knee touches the elbow on the same side of your body. Alternate legs and repeat for 3 sets of 20.
For a proper description of a burpee, check out this video here. Do as many as you can in 2 minutes, and if you can, rest and repeat!
So the next time you’re short on time but don’t want to miss a workout entirely, try any one or combination of these exercises you can do in your dorm for a quick solution!