Some days, you have every intention of actually working on losing weight by making it to the gym, or even for a simple walk outside…but that just doesn’t happen, and you remain in the comfortable clutches of your couch or arm chair, staring at the TV, hour after hour.
Believe it or not, you can make this scenario work to your body-toning advantage – with your sofa or chair doubling as a surprisingly effective workout tool!
1. Couch Push-Ups
Facing a couch, kneel on the floor about 2 feet away from it. Cross your ankles, and place your hands shoulder-width apart on a cushion edge. Slowly bend your arms, and lower your upper body until your chest touches the couch. Hold, then press up again.
2. Side Crunches
Lie on the couch on your left side with your legs together and your knees bent. Place your right hand behind your head with your elbow pointing toward the ceiling. Wrap your left arm across your waist. Contracting the oblique muscles along your right side, lift your shoulder off the couch, bringing your rib cage toward your hip. Hold, then slowly lower. Repeat, then switch sides.
3. Armchair Stands
Sit on the edge of a chair or couch with your feet shoulder-width apart. Without using your arms, press into the floor with your feet, and stand, tightening your butt muscles as you rise. Keep your abdominals tight and your back straight. Hold, then slowly lower yourself. Before you touch the chair, stand up again.
4. Armchair Dips
Sitting on the edge of a chair (or couch), place your hands on the edge on either side of you. Move your feet out so that your butt is off the chair, and your knees are bent at 90-degree angles. Bending your elbows so they point behind you, lower yourself as far as comfortable. Hold, then slowly press up again.
5. Leg-Up Couch Crunches
Lie on your back on a couch with your knees bent, your feet up on one end, and your hands behind your head. Pressing your lower back into the couch, slowly lift your head, shoulders, and upper back off the couch. Hold, then slowly lower.
Lie on your back on a couch with your hands (palms down) under your butt and your legs straight up in the air. Keeping your knees slightly bent and your feet flexed, slowly spread your legs as far apart as comfortable. Hold, then slowly bring your legs together, resisting as you press them in.