Want to get leaner and stronger? Or perhaps you're trying to build up your endurance? From squats and push-ups to planks, there are hundreds of exercises available. As you would expect, some work better than others. It all comes down to your goals.
Certain exercises benefit everyone, regardless of age or fitness level. They increase strength and endurance, boost your stamina, and support overall health. Once you master them, you can try new variations and upgrade your workouts.
We've compiled a list of the five best exercises everyone should do. For optimal results, stick to the 8-12 rep range. Complete up to 15 reps per set when training your and lower body. Start with light to medium weights to build up your strength. Gradually increase the load without sacrificing form. If you exercise at home, use your bodyweight only. Later on, you can purchase a set of dumbbells or a medicine ball for extra resistance.
Beware that you cannot out-exercise a bad diet. No matter how hard you're training, clean eating is a must. If you're having ice cream and fries on a daily basis, you'll get little or no progress. Choose nutritious, whole foods that support your fitness goals. Start your day with CLICK, the all-in-one, coffee protein drink to provide your body with healthy energy, protein and nutrients.
On days that you are mastering these exercises or being especially active, fuel your workout with CLICK Active within 30 minutes of exercise. CLICK Active will boost your workout, ignite lean muscle growth and help ward off fatigue. It also speeds up recovery from training and increases metabolism.
Ready to get started? Add these exercises to your routine for greater strength and performance:
Few exercises can compete with the squat. This compound movement engages your whole body and hits nearly every muscle. It works your quads, hamstrings, glutes, and calves as well as your back and abs. Doing squats is the fastest way to build lower body strength and shape your legs.
This exercise also increases your metabolic rate, so you'll keep burning calories long after leaving the gym. On top of that, it balances your hormones and stimulates testosterone release, which helps improve your body composition. In the long run, it sculpts your glutes and legs, strengthens your core, and enhances athletic performance
To keep your muscles guessing, try different squat variations. Experiment with goblet squats, Bulgarian split squats, wall squats, sumo squats, and single-leg squats. Use a barbell or dumbbells to make your workout more challenging.
Barbell and dumbbell rows shape your back muscles and torch fat. This movement works your lats, traps, delts, and biceps. When done right, it boosts functional fitness and upper body strength. It’s one of the best "bang for your buck" exercises, providing a full body workout.
Whether you want a wider back, broader shoulders, or toned arms, rows should be on your list. This exercise helps you build a stronger body, increases explosive power, and reinforced proper hip flexion. Depending on your preferences, you can do barbell rows, cable rows, inverted rows, T-bar rows, or one-arm dumbbell rows.
For stronger glutes and hamstrings, try single-leg deadlifts. This multi-joint exercise works every muscle in your lower body as well as your core muscles. It also improves your balance and coordination, making everyday activities easier.
The single-leg deadlift activates your glutes to a greater extent than traditional deadlifts. Additionally, it's safer and puts less stress on your back. It can be done with or without weights, which allows you to exercise anywhere, anytime. It also helps fix muscular balances and improves hip stability.
Unless you live on a deserted island, it's impossible not to have heard about planks. This full body exercise is the key to a strong core. Surprisingly, it requires no weights or fancy gym machines. All you need is your own bodyweight and some free space.
The plank engages all core muscles as well as your quads and shoulders. It enhances your stability and balance, improves postural support, and increases overall strength. A strong helps maintain good posture and makes everyday tasks easier. According to a study published in the Journal of Strength and Conditioning, this exercise provides 100 percent activation of the core muscles compared to the crunch, which only engages 64 percent of these muscles.
There is one than one way to do planks. Depending on your fitness level, try standard planks, reverse planks, side planks, walking planks, single-arm planks, single-leg planks, or plank hip dips. Perform this exercise at least three times a week to reap its benefits.
Our list wouldn't be complete without push-ups. This simple yet challenging exercise builds total body strength and raises your metabolism. It also gets you rid of flabby arms, sculpts your abs, and helps develop a strong back.
If you're a newbie, you may not be able to do more than three or four push-ups at once. That's perfectly fine. The more you practice, the stronger you’ll get. Do a few more push-ups every day until you're able to perform a full set (15-20 reps). Experiment with push-up variations, such as rotational push-ups, diamond push-ups, single-arm push-ups, alligator push-ups, and tiger push-ups.