The Best Gym-Free Exercises: Fitness Experts Share Their Favorite Moves

Fitness Experts Share Their Favorite Gym-Free Moves
Man practicing yoga in park
Man practicing yoga in park

By Laura McMullen for U.S. News Health

Quit the gym. Or rather, if the 40 or 50 bucks you shell out each month for a membership is shrinking your wallet, remember that folks have been exercising since long before the days of ellipticals and spin classes. Many exercises can be done just about anywhere, any time. Squats in the office; push-ups as the pasta cooks; lunges during "Game of Thrones" -- there's no need to pay cash for these moves, just cold, hard calories. Below, five fitness experts with a collective six-pack of 30 abs (don't think about the math too hard) dole out their favorite exercises that require no gym, no trainer and barely any equipment.

Fill out those
(in a good way) with this move from Bobby and Alicia Strom of
& Massage in Hollywood, Calif. Treat yourself to a Google image search of this power couple, and it's no surprise that, between the two of them, they've helped sculpt the likes of Scarlett Johansson, Blake Lively, Britney Spears and plenty of other stars. To get glutes, quads and hamstrings fit to walk the red carpet, Team Strom suggests this move, called "Squat into Stiff Leg Dead Lift:"
  • Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart and your hands folded in front of you, and squat until your elbows touch your quads. Keep your head down as you raise your butt and straighten your legs, feeling a nice stretch in your hamstrings. Slowly lift your head back up. How'd that feel? Good; now do it 19 more times. And if want to really Hulk out, hold a medicine ball throughout the exercise.
Here's another move to achieve a lower half that may or may not remind us of a certain Sir Mix-A-Lot song. This one comes from
, a personal trainer certified by the National Academy of Sports Medicine who splits her time between Las Vegas and Salt Lake City. She's a big fan of the "Triple Lunge:"
  • We'll take it one lunge at a time. Stand up straight with feet shoulder-width apart, and then step your left foot forward to create 90 degree-angles with each knee. Be sure that your left knee doesn't lean past your left ankle and that your right knee doesn't touch the floor. Bring your left foot back into your starting position, and this time, lunge it to your left side. Your right leg should be stretched straight. Now bring your left foot back to the starting position once more. Time for the reverse lunge, in which you lunge your left leg backward, again, to create two 90 degree angles. Repeat this three-part move five to eight times, and then get going on your right-leg lunges.
you'd like to show off at the beach this summer? The following move works your core, shoulders and triceps (aka the parts of your arm you don't want to jiggle during the Funky Chicken at summer weddings). Here's what
, a group fitness instructor with the Aerobics and Fitness Association of America, dubs "Desk dips:"
  • Stand facing away from a desk or table. With palms on the edge of the desk behind you, walk your feet forward about two feet. Drop your body down toward the floor, and then push back up into starting position. Try this first with legs bent, but if you'd like more of a challenge, walk your feet out father, with legs straight. If you're feeling particularly ambitions, lift one leg off the ground as you dip, alternating between legs. Whichever you chose, shoot for four sets of 15.

Finally, grab some cardio and have fun in the process. (No, the two concepts are not mutually exclusive.) How? By doing something you may not have attempted since grade school: jumping rope. This suggestion comes from New York-based fitness and lifestyle coach Liz DiAlto, who points out that a jump rope is easy to pack as you travel or keep in your car. Sneak in a couple intervals when you can, and feel like a kid again in the process.

Before You Go

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