No gym membership? No problem! Lacking home fitness equipment? No excuses, here. Your home is full of tools for getting a great home workout! Learn how using household items as workout equipment can improve your at-home workouts.
Sometimes you just don’t have time to go to the gym. And even if you do have time for a workout, not everyone has the equipment to fill a home gym. Instead of skipping a workout, get creative! Using household items as workout equipment is easier than you think. From water jugs, bags of fruit, paint cans and many more, there are plenty of items lying around your house that would make the perfect alternative to hand weights.
A full (or nearly full) container of liquid laundry detergent is a fabulous alternative when you don’t have hand weights. To put it in perspective, my 1.17 gallon tub is equivalent to 10 pounds – making it perfect for low impact moves like squats, dead lifts, bent over rows and standing wood chops. Even just carrying it up and down the stairs a few times will get the heart rate up. Watch my laundry detergent squats at the end of this post for inspiration!
Don’t have laundry detergent on hand? These household items also work!
1 Gallon Milk Jug
Sack of Potatoes
Kitty Litter (cat lady right here)
This is probably my favorite household item to use as exercise equipment. Mainly because the exercises I do with them are high intensity. After a few strength moves with my laundry detergent and wine bottles, I speed things up using hand towels. Mountain climbers (as you will see in the vine below) are challenging, fast paced, and effective. The only difference between these mountain climbers and the traditional version is you are using the towels to slide your feet/knees inward. When you do this, make sure to keep your core engaged, hands directly under the shoulders, and eyes forward.
Hand towels work great. But these will do the job:
Wine Bottles (full)
A standard bottle of wine is just under 2 pounds. And no, that isn’t much, but it’s enough to feel the burn. Below you’ll see me perform tricep kickbacks using wine bottles. And although the weight is low, I was definitely feeling it around rep ten. Wine bottles are pretty great for many upper body exercises. In addition to tricep kickbacks, experiment using wine bottles for bicep curls, shoulder press, arm circles and a basic row. The key with these arm exercises is to maintain control over the movement. No swinging the arms back or down. You’re controlling the weight as it’s lifted and lowered, creating tension in the muscles.
Wine cabinet dry? Hard to believe – but try these items instead:
Jars of Spaghetti Sauce
A broom is a great home exercise tool when you’re looking for a quick core workout. My favorite here are oblique twists. First, place the broom across your shoulders on the meaty part of your back (just as you would with a barbell). Engage the core by pulling your belly button into the spine and twist your core to the right. Turn back to center and twist to the left. This incredibly simple move is also extremely effective!
OK – this one is kind of a joke. And I’m fully aware it sounds odd. But it works! Lately I’ve been using my pet cat as weight for standing lunges. I just place him across my shoulders and begin the exercise. Mind you he is 17 pounds – so using him in place of dumbbells is an effective alternative. Now, not everyone has a pet as chill as mine. Swap the feline by holding 1 water bottle on each shoulder. Soup cans also work!