With the holidays approaching, I’m willing to bet a fair number of you guys and girls are heading home, having relatives over, or otherwise getting out of your standard routine. Getting away to the gym for a workout becomes quite the hassle when you’re out of town, without a car, have the in-laws to entertain…yadda yadda yadda…you get the idea.
So naturally, since all you SIF’ers are such a hardworking and determined bunch, you’ve decided to simply do your workout at home. After all, you know by now you can get just as an effective workout in your living as you can at your globo gym you go to when your schedule is a bit more regular.
But wait a minute….
You’re going to be in a house full of babies, easily irritated in-laws, and a snot-nosed 15-year-old who will ruin everyone’s day if she’s awoken before noon. So while you’re trying to get your workout in, you’ve now got to workout in near silence. No loud jumping, no heavy plyometrics, no doing anything that might possibly wake up the rest of the household….
As if getting yourself to workout over the holidays wasn’t hard enough, you now have to figure out a way to do it in near silence.
This was actually something posed to us by a couple of our readers who were going home and needed to workout without causing a ruckus. I admit, creating a “noise-free” workout was never something that occurred to me. But the more I thought about it, this type of workout applies to so many more people than those spending time with light sleepers. Apartment dwellers, students in dorms, office workers….there are tons of reasons you may want to workout without sounding like a herd of elephants. Well, with that in mind, I scoured the database, looking for some solid exercises that could effectively raise heart rates, hit the major muscle groups, and provide a killer total body, and near-silent workout, for those in need.
The key behind the Noise-Free Workout is going all out on the cardio portions and strictly abiding by rest times. By doing so, you’re guaranteed to keep your heart rate elevated, which in turn will help you slash through calories. By performing strength-based movements for the entire interval cycles (we’re lifting for TIME not REPS in this workout) you’ll be sure to effectively fatigue those muscles, resulting in lean mass growth. Obviously, our abilities are all different, so make sure you’re using a weight heavy enough induce fatigue. Using five-pound dumbbells probably isn’t going to get it done.
That leads us to another point. Since you’re working out at home, you likely aren’t going to have access to much equipment. With that in mind, this workout has been crafted using exercises that only require your bodyweight and a set of dumbbells or two. If you don’t have dumbbells, don’t worry, there are workarounds.
When you don’t have dumbbells, try these replacements….
- Small plastic shopping bags filled with whatever you have on hand to desired weight.
- Empty water jugs filled with water to desired weight (my personal favorite)
- Cartons of milk
Seriously, not having equipment is no excuse anymore. I’m a huge proponent of using water jugs in place of weights….even when I have weights readily available! If you’re not quite sold on the idea, check out this post from last year which details some killer ways to workout with water jugs when you don’t have conventional weighted equipment available.
The (Almost) Noise-Free Workout
Okay, so I’ve heard you loud and clear – you want a workout that can be done without a ton of jumping, slamming, and bouncing off the walls. The following workout is designed to make little to no noise – heavy breathing, grunting, and gasping for air notwithstanding – and effectively get that heart rate thumping and the sweat pouring.
How It Works: Simply follow along with the designed intervals below. Each interval is going for 3 minutes unless otherwise noted. Perform each exercise for the prescribed interval and only rest when indicated (unless you absolutely need it).
Warm Up Interval
We’re just going for a little warm up here to get the blood moving and your joints loosened up. Remember, this is a noise-free workout, so stay light on your feet and bounce on the balls of your feet. Staying light on your feet will help you increase your agility, balance, and targets stabilizer muscles.
- 1 minute Dumbbell “Jump Rope”/1 minute Alternating Reverse Lunges/rest 15 seconds
Repeat 2 times total
Kick It Up Interval
Once we’ve had a nice little warm up, we want to gradually increase your heart rate to a solid working level. The kick it up interval is focused on increasing cardiovascular endurance, improving core strength, and getting you a good sweat going.
- 1 minute Turbo Crab Kicks (remember stay light on the feet)/1 minute 180 Planks/1 minute Shadow Boxing holding weights/rest 45 seconds
Repeat 3 times total
Burn It Up Interval
The burn it up interval is designed to start targeting those muscles after you’ve gotten your heart rate going. These full body movements are great for hitting your muscles hard, and if you’re using appropriate weights, heavy. Fill those water jugs, bags, whatever you’re using so you’re struggling towards the end of each lift interval. The full body nature of these exercises will no doubt keep your heart rate going and bring you a step closer to full exhaustion.
Repeat 3 times total
Keep Pushing Interval
By now, fatigue is starting to set in. If you’ve followed the pace of this workout thus far, you’re almost 30 minutes in. Now is the time real gains are being made. You’re extending your heart rate, improving your caloric burn, and beginning to effect your EPOC and post-exercise metabolic rate. Pushing hard here is key. We’re quickly switching between a variety of exercises to keep things fresh and your body challenged.
Repeat 3 times total
Finish Strong Interval
The finish line is in sight, we’re going to go all out here and make sure we finish this workout strong. Take a breath, the cardio portion is over – we’re simply focusing on your core here. Perform the reps for each listed exercise in as few sets as possible, striving to improve performance each time you cycle through this workout.
- 100 Bicycle Crunches
- 3 minute Plank (total time planking should equal 3 minutes. Take rest as needed)
- 100 Windshield Wipers
And that folks, will do it for today’s workout. In just under 45 minutes you’ve completed this killer, total body, calorie-blasting workout, earned that extra slice of Grandma’s upside down pineapple cake, and managed to leave your lazy friends and family members in relative peace. Give yourself a pat on the back and take so time off, because tomorrow is a rest day. If you’re looking to do this workout multiple times while you’re away, consider using it every 2-3 days to give yourself adaquate recovery time.
If you’ve got any questions about this workout, please feel free to leave us a comment below and I’d be more than happy to get back to you.