The Best Bodyweight Exercises for Travelers

“This is an excellent post from the Cleveland Clinic in the last three months. My personal favorites are Move1, the high knees, and the bird dog plank, Move 6. I do that one on the toes, not the knees. I like doing this every day with the intention to do them twice a day,  in addition to being in the gym. I say this to “benchmark,” encouraging  you to a higher and more frequent simple exercise program. The author has good pictures I recommend at their site, ” Bill Chesnut, MD

The Best Bodyweight Exercises for Travelers

by Ryan Sidak, B.S. Exercise Science

From business travel to family getaways to European vacations, we live in a culture that’s on the go — often! But all that moving from place-to-place doesn’t mean you have to stop exercising. All you need is your body — some of the best “equipment” available! I’ve outlined here a bodyweight circuit routine with six of my favorite moves and simple instructions you can pull up on your phone — no matter where you are. Even better: It won’t take hours out of your busy schedule to stay fit. You can adjust the circuit to the amount of time you have available. Happy travels!
Move 1: High Knees

Stand upright with good posture and raise your right knee up toward your chest as high as you can. Return your right foot to the ground and repeat with the left foot and leg. To crank up the intensity, increase the pace so that you are running in place with high knees.

Move 2: Squats
Begin with your feet slightly wider than shoulder-width apart and toes pointing forward. Lower your hips while also pushing them back. Stand back up pressing through your heels. If you have difficulty with squats, stand in front of a bench or chair and simply sit down into the chair all the way before standing back up.
Move 3: Mountain Climbers

Make sure that your chair is heavy enough to hold you, or to further secure it, push it up against a wall or desk. Begin in a push-up position with your hands under your shoulders and a straight line from the top of your head to your heels. Raise one knee as close to your chest as you can and return to the starting positing. Repeat with opposite leg. To make this move more difficult, remove the chair or bench and place your hands on the ground. Complete one knee raise with the left foot and the right foot for a full rep.
Move 4: Glute Bridge

Lie in your back with knees bent and feet on the ground, toes pointed toward the ceiling. Press through your heels to raise your hips so that your body forms a straight line from shoulders to knees. Hold for 3 to 5 seconds squeezing your glutes as hard as possible.

Move 5: Plank

With your hands or elbows under your shoulders, create a straight line from head to heel. Squeeze your glutes and brace your stomach (think about flexing as if someone was about to punch you in the stomach) — and breathe. If this move feels too challenging for you, try a plank position from your knees.

Move 6: Bird Dog

Begin on your hands and knees with a flat back. Simultaneously raise your right hand and left leg. Straighten both and hold 3 to 5 seconds. Return to starting position and raise your left hand and right leg (opposite sides).