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Winter is certainly on its way and with the threat of snow or heavy downpours you don't want to go out into the cold. So why not stay indoors and exercise by doing this indoor workout using very little equipment in the comfort of your own home.

The great thing about exercise is that you can do it pretty much anywhere and you do not need lots of expensive equipment to burn some calories or get a great session done. With the weather starting to get worse, a great way to avoid adding the Christmas pounds is to work out from home. A lot of people avoid the gym or exercise classes this time of year because it's dark and dangerous by the time we get home from work, so we opt to stay in. But take 40 minutes out of your evening to try this workout. It is broken down into two mini circuits, if you are a complete beginner try just one to start with and build up to being able to complete both in one session.

Each circuit is made up of five exercises which you need to complete back to back with ideally no rest in between. Take your time and pace yourself if you need a rest, then have a 30 second to a minute between them — just don't make it five minutes!

Each exercise has a time limit so push yourself to complete as many reps of each exercise as possible. Keep a note of your score as this will give you something to work towards each week.

Circuit one contains sit ups, burpees, Russian twists, shoulder presses and squats. Circuit two consists of tricep dips, mountain climbers, step-ups, star jumps and lunges.

Circuit One

Sit-ups: Use a mat if you find this is uncomfortable, lay on the floor on your back and have your knees at about a 45 degree angle so your feet are flat on the floor. Cross your arms across your chest and tense your tummy muscles to lift your head upwards. Keep the back straight and raise your back off the floor until at 45 degrees and then lower. If you can try not to rest your back fully on the floor between reps.

Burpees: Start laying face down on the floor, when you are ready plant your palms onto the floor and lift yourself up into the press up position and pull the legs into the chest. Then jump upwards into a star jump/jumping jack. When you land the star jump squat down, push the feet back out as if in the push up position and start again.

Russian Twist: This works the ab muscles again, get into the same position as the sit up but raise your back until you are already at 45 degrees (top of sit up). Clasp your hands together and then raise your feet a couple of inches off of the floor using your stomach muscles to hold you in that position. Then twist your hands across the body and tap your outer hip then tap the opposite hip.

Shoulder Press: For this use either dumbbells if you have them or two items in the house that are the same weight, e.g. tins of beans. Stand with feet shoulder width apart and hold the weight in your hands level with your shoulder. Push and extend the weight above your head until your arms are fully straight and lower to the start.

Squat: Standing with feet shoulder width apart, slowly lower your bottom towards the ground as if sitting on a seat. Keep the back straight and try not to let the knees push in front of the toes, go as far down as is comfortable and then return to the top.

Continue reading after recommendations

  • www.bodybuilding.com www.womenshealth.com

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