Winter workouts


It’s another winter day, halfway through the second semester and it’s a struggle to find the motivation to get out of bed, let alone leave the building. The sun is bleakly peeking through a curtain of clouds, making a sad attempt to melt the white blanket of snow that coats the campus of Bryant University. The bare trees, shaking in the frigid wind, are a stark reminder that we still have a handful of weeks left of this dreadful weather. There’s nothing that sounds better than staying in bed and curling up under piles of blankets.

Leaving bed is a struggle, so braving the walk through the cold winter chill all of the way to the gym is out of the question. Don’t let the unfavorable weather conditions deter you from exercising. Contrary to belief, a full gym isn’t necessarily required in order to get in a good workout. If you’re looking for a way to increase your heart rate or crank up your energy levels, read on to discover a few simple yet effect moves that can be performed in a dorm—no equipment necessary.

1. Squats. Air squats can conveniently be done in a dorm room with no equipment. This is a full body exercise that targets the lower body. Start by positioning your feet shoulder width apart with your toes pointed slightly outward. Simultaneously, bend your knees while pushing your hips and butt out, mimicking the movements you would make to sit in a chair. Throughout this exercise, it is important to make sure that your bent knees don’t go past your toes. Lower your body until it is below parallel with the ground. Hold a neutral forward looking gaze as well as an upright torso. To come back to the starting position, straighten your legs by driving through your heels. To make the move more challenging, do frog jumps. Instead of straightening your legs to come back to the starting position, jump straight up.

2. Dips. This workout focuses on the triceps but also works your chest and shoulders. Sit on the edge of a chair with your hands placed beside you. Straighten your arms, use your hands to support your body weight, and slowly lower your body downwards until your elbows bend at a ninety degree angle. Straighten your arms to bring your body back up, completing the first rep. To challenge yourself, put your feet on another chair across from you and complete the same motions.

3. Push-ups. Push-ups mainly work your chest but your shoulders and triceps are also utilized to perform the movement. Start by lying on the ground face down with your feet together and your hands on the ground next to your shoulders, palms faced down. Your hands should be shoulder width apart. Use your arms to push yourself up while maintaining a straight and flat back. Your butt should not bow to the ground. Slowly lower your body back down until it almost touches the floor and then explode back up. To challenge yourself, try elevated push-ups, in which your feet are on a table, thus “elevated”. The same movement applies.

4. Planks. A great workout that targets the abdominals is a plank. Start this exercise by lying face down on the floor with your forearms on the ground beneath you. and by keeping your feet together. Push up so that your forearms and feet are supporting your wait. It is important to make sure that the body is straight and flat. Furthermore, your butt should not bow to the ground. Hold this position for a minute. To challenge yourself, try and hold this position for longer periods of times.

5. Cardio. Some great workouts that can be done in a small space are jumping jacks, high knees, butt kicks, and burpees. These conditioning exercises increase both strength and endurance. Burpees are fast paced exercises. Start in a squat position with your hands on the floor in front of you. Kick back your feet so that you are in a push up position. Arms should be straight and the body should be straight and flat. Immediately bring your feet forward so that you are back in the squatting position. Finally, jump up as high as you can with arms reaching to the ceiling. These movements should all be executed quickly. To make the exercise more challenging, add a push-up into the burpee.

Icy temperatures make the walk to the gym less than appealing, but no matter what the weather is, you now know five workouts that can be performed in your dorm without using any gym equipment. Now that you don’t have an excuse
to not exercise, get up and get moving.