When it comes down to working out in the gym, it’s important that we do everything we can to keep our training fresh and exciting. It’s all well and good following the same training regime week in and week out, but eventually you will plateau physically and perhaps mentally as well.
If you’re going through the same exercises week in and week out, you’ll soon find yourself becoming bored and growing tired of the same monotonous routine. This is where it pays to keep things fresh and exciting. We know about the ‘meat and potatoes’ exercises of the gym, you know the ones: your barbell bench presses, dumbbell curls, deadlifts, squats, military presses, and so on. While very beneficial, after doing the same exercises for months, years even, your muscles and your body will be crying out for a change. This is where we come into the picture. To help you to keep your training fun and exciting, here are some fun and unique exercises to try the next time you’re in the gym.
Dumbbell floor presses – When training your chest, you’re probably sick to the back teeth of bench presses. Either performed with barbells or with dumbbells, bench presses can grow boring after a while. This is where it pays to try something new, and that something new comes in the form of dumbbell floor presses. Dumbbell floor presses are very similar to flat bench dumbbell presses, expect for the fact that you perform them on the floor. While you can’t get as deep a stretch on your chest, this exercise is great for generating explosive power and it brings more triceps into the picture so your triceps get an awesome workout in the process. To perform this exercise take a set of dumbbells and position them on either side of you. Grasp one in each hand, lay flat on your back, bend your knees and keep your feet flat on the ground and press them into the air and slowly lower them back down until your elbow grazes the floor. Repeat for your desired number of reps.
Birthing squats – Okay, before performing this squat we need to talk to you about the importance of tight-fitting clothing. If you are wearing loose-fitting shorts along with loose-fitting underwear, this exercise will not leave much to the imagination. While it can leave you feeling a little exposed, shall we say, it is absolutely fantastic for working the legs. It opens up the hips, stretches the inner thighs, opens up the spine, and works your glutes like you wouldn’t believe. To perform this exercise place both feet 4 inches wider than hip-width and point your toes in a 10 and 2 position. Now, tuck the pelvis, and squat down as deeply as you can go, and by deep, we really mean deep! You should place both of your elbows inside each of your legs and push outwards gently until you feel a deep stretch. Now you can see why tight-fitting clothing is so important with this exercise.
Kneeling leg lifts – This next exercise is fantastic for working the glutes. Remember, “squat booties’ are very much in fashion at the moment, though many would argue that this exercise helps isolate the glutes better than a squat ever could. This exercise is fantastic for working the butt, along with the hamstrings and it’s a lot of fun to perform as well. To perform kneeling leg lifts you should begin on your hands and your knees. Next, you should lift your left leg up from the hip, making sure that you keep your heel perfectly in line with the knee. Now, at the top of the movement, be sure to flex and squeeze, and repeat for 10 – 20 reps. Once complete, switch legs and repeat the process all over again.
Shoulder openers – Some exercises are better than others at really opening up the shoulders and giving you a fantastic deep stretch in the deltoids, and this exercise is one of them. It works your shoulders, your upper back, and your core, and is great for improving mobility and flexibility at the same time. As if that wasn’t enough, it’s also great for anybody looking to improve their posture. To perform this exercise, you should take a set of fairly light dumbbells, like the same weight you’d use if you were performing lateral raises for reps. Now, stand with your feet hip-width apart, and bend both elbows until the dumbbells are brought together in front of you at waist-height. Be sure to hold this 90-degree bend in the elbows and slowly open both hands out, as if you were wearing a dressing gown and were peeling it open to playfully flash a romantic partner in the bedroom. Be sure to roll the shoulders back, keep the elbows tight, and push your chest outwards. Hold for a second, squeeze, and return to the starting position. Repeat for as many reps as needed.