How To Train Without A Gym Membership

by Robert Laudani

There are many reasons why people don’t exercise, these include time, motivation and gym expenses. Just 20 minutes of regular exercise across the week can help you control your body weight, reduce the risks of cardiovascular diseases, strengthen your muscles and bones, improve your mood, mental health and longevity. Here’s how…

First we need to identify why are we performing the exercises? For muscle gain (hypertrophy), improved muscle strength or toning & endurance? In order to meet your goals you need to choose the right amount of repetitions (reps), sets, weight (load), rest time and number of sessions/frequency per week for you to complete these exercises.

Generally the amount of reps and rest for the different training modes are as follows:


Here are a few exercises you can do at home or at a local park with no costs (aim for 6-8 exercises per session):

Upper Body Exercises

  • Bicep: Biceps Curl*, Underhand Chin-up*, Underhand Inverted Row*
  • Triceps: Triceps Dip
  • Deltoids: Lateral Raise*, Inverted Row*
  • Pectorals: Push-ups, Chest Dip*
  • Lats: Chin-ups*, Pull-ups*
  • Rhomboids: Inverted Row*
  • Traps: Shoulder Shrugs*

Back & Core Exercises

  • Abs: Crunches, Sit-ups, Lying Leg-Hip Raise
  • Internal/External Oblique: Twist Crunches/Sit-ups, Side Bridge, Lying Twist
  • Transverse Abs: ‘Activate Core’ Pull navel into spine and hold
  • Erector Spinae: Back Extension, Back Bridge

Lower Body Exercises

  • Psoas: Hanging Leg Raise*, Lying Straight Leg Raise, Lying Scissor Kick
  • Glutes: Lunges, Squat, Step-Up*, Jumps, Sit-to-Stand
  • Quadriceps: Lunges, Single Leg Squat, Lateral Step-Up, Box Jumps
  • Hamstrings: Standing Hamstring Curls, Reverse Lunge, Bridges, Leg Lift Extensions/Body Weight Leg Curl
  • Soleus: Calf Raise, Mountain Climbers, Jump Rope*
  • Calves: Standing Calf Raise, Single Leg Calf Raise

* Denotes use of a household weight, steps or bars or railing found at local parks and playgrounds, all other exercises can be completed with body weight.

Remember you can always exercise with friends or family to make it more enjoyable. Incorporating a regular 15-20 minute walk per day into your routine helps too. With this basic information you can construct your own workout regime that suits your goals, diet and daily routine. Don’t forget a good program consists of 6-8 exercises within each session and ensure you don’t over exercise by giving your body and muscles adequate rest time between sessions. Approximately 24-48 hours depending on the type of training. These simple changes to your lifestyle will are an investment in living a healthier and happier life.

Image credit: Puma, Lorna Jane, adidas.