Even if you don’t have time to shower after a workout doesn’t mean you should forgo daily exercise. While sweating is a sign your body temperature is rising, sweat isn’t always necessary for an amazing workout. You can boost your energy and tone your muscles without even moving though isometric exercises — they contract your muscles while you stay in one stead position. The longer you hold each position, the more muscle fibers you recruit, thereby intensifying your workout while still leaving you sweat-free.
So the next time you’re in a rush (and without access to a shower and clean change of clothes!), try these moves:
1. Wall Sit
While wall sit works all of your leg muscles, special emphasis is placed yourinner thighs. Consciously focus on pushing your knees outward and notice how your inner thighs begin to contract.
Place your back against a wall, feet shoulder width apart in front of you. Slide your torso down the wall until your legs create a 90-degree angle, thighs parallel to the floor, knees tracking over ankles. Either hold your arms out in front of you or down at your sides. Your shoulders remain in contact with the wall. Hold for one minute.
2. Leg Raise
This exercise is a perfect combination of stretching and strengthening. By flexing the front of your thigh, you strengthen and tone the muscles around your knee and the front of your leg while simultaneously stretching out your hamstrings, the muscles at the back of your leg that get tight while driving or sitting.
Flatten your back against a wall, legs shoulder width apart. Bend your right knee and lift your leg high. Push your heel away, extending your leg straight. Your body will want to peel away from the wall but don’t let it. Take deep breaths. If you notice your leg dropping, pull it higher during your exhale. Hold for 30 seconds to one minute, then switch legs.
This is the ultimatearm toning exercise. By holding your arms up, you work the front, middle and posterior portion of your shoulders. Make sure to push your fingertips toward the sky to activate your biceps, while pushing the palms away from your body to activate the lower portion of your triceps.
Stand tall and tighten your tummy. Extend both arms out to the side at shoulder level (like a “T”), palms facing out, fingertips reaching to the sky. Squeeze your shoulder blades back and together. Keep the tension by continually pushing your hands away from you as though you’re trying to push away the walls on either side or you. Hold for 30 seconds to one minute.
The plank is the most popular isometric exercise because of its ability to flatten the core. It activates your transverse abdominis (inner abs) which tightens your tummy and strengthens your back.
Lie on your stomach. Place your forearms on the ground, elbows under shoulders and legs extended behind you. Curl your toes under, lift your knees off the ground and hold. Create a straight line from the top of your head to your heels. The best way to engage your abs in this position is to pretend you have to cough. This will tighten your tummy muscles down to the deepest part of your core. Hold for 30 seconds to one minute.
5. Reverse Push Up
By bending your arms during this exercise you focus on your triceps, the area that tightens arm jiggle. As an added bonus you contract your upper back muscles which simultaneously opens the chest to give you perfect posture.
Sit on the floor with bent knees and feet flat on the floor. Place your hands under your shoulders, thumbs face in. Squeeze your shoulder blades together. Lift your tush off of the ground and bend your elbows. Open your chest. Hold for 30 seconds to one minute.