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7 Reasons You Don't Need A Gym To Get In Shape


First Posted: 03/03/2012 10:00 am EST Updated: 03/03/2012 10:00 am EST

By Charlotte Andersen for Shape.com

Your body is just as good as any fancy fitness machine. Here's why:

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  • The Possibilities Are Endless

    People hear "bodyweight training" and immediately think "boring." But there are so many more options than pushups, planks and squats! Think Spider Man pushups, wall sits and criss-cross kicks. With a little creativity, your options are virtually limitless. <strong>More from Shape.com:</strong> <a href="http://www.shape.com/fitness/workouts/10-reasons-why-you-need-try-bodyrocktv" target="_hplink">10 Reasons to Try BodRock.Tv</a> <a href="http://www.shape.com/fitness/workouts/best-workouts-you-arent-doing" target="_hplink">The Best Workouts You Aren't Doing</a> <a href="http://www.shape.com/fitness/workouts/ultimate-arms-and-abs-workout" target="_hplink">The Ultimate Abs and Arms Workout</a> <em>Flickr photo by <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/everydaypants/3767243482/" target="_hplink">ramsey beyer</a></em>

  • There's Less Risk Of Injury

    It's hard to drop a weight on your foot when the only weight you're using is your own body. Being in control of how intense you make the exercise means you can feel potential problems right away and adjust your form without having to worry about rolling the squat bar over your neck.

  • The Workouts Are Easy To Modify

    Exercise beginners are often terrified of boot-camp style workouts, and experienced gym-goers sometimes write off bodyweight training as not challenging enough. Fortunately there are so many options and variations that you can make them as easy or as difficult as you need. If you can't do clapping pushups from your toes, have you ever tried them from your knees? Still too hard? Try them standing up, leaning forward into a wall.

  • It's Less Intimidating

    Weight rooms can be daunting, as can the latest and greatest fitness equipment, but don't let your fears hold you back from a killer workout. Sticking to lunges, squats, triceps dips and the like is an easy way to get comfortable with strength workouts and focus on using proper form.

  • You Can Do It Anywhere

    Waiting for the cable guy? Flight delayed? You can fit in an effective bodyweight workout anywhere. All you need is a little open space on the floor -- and maybe a little disregard for what people think.

  • It's Cheaper

    Nothing is more economical than working out with what you've got on hand. Literally. But giving your wallet a break doesn't mean you're giving your body one -- bodyweight workouts can be every bit as effective as ones you do in the gym.

  • You Can Easily Track Your Progress

    With simple bodyweight exercises, it's easy to see how your strength is progressing. No need to worry about sets, weight loads and rest periods -- if you can count you can track your progress. <strong>More from Shape.com:</strong> <a href="http://www.shape.com/fitness/workouts/10-reasons-why-you-need-try-bodyrocktv" target="_hplink">10 Reasons to Try BodRock.Tv</a> <a href="http://www.shape.com/fitness/workouts/best-workouts-you-arent-doing" target="_hplink">The Best Workouts You Aren't Doing</a> <a href="http://www.shape.com/fitness/workouts/ultimate-arms-and-abs-workout" target="_hplink">The Ultimate Abs and Arms Workout</a>

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Filed by Sarah Klein  |  Report Corrections