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No Gym, No Problem
No money to join a gym? Don't sweat it. You don't need a gym membership in order to get in shape. Not only that, but you can get in better shape at home within 4 weeks. Commit to one month of healthy eating and exercise, and this time next month, you'll see results.
Start out by planning your at-home fitness program. You'll need to fit in 2-3 strength training sessions, and 5 cardio workouts each week. In addition, do 1-2 workouts that focus on flexibility, such as yoga or pilates.
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Can you get in shape in 4 weeks? Yes you can, but not without some cardio. Pick a form of cardiovascular exercise that you enjoy. If you hate running, don't even try to stick to a 5 day per week running program because it will never last. Instead, choose something you really love. Tennis, jumping rope, ice skating, basketball games with friends, or brisk walking, are great, low cost forms of cardio. Commit to some form of cardio for at least 30 minutes a day, 5 days a week. Within 4 weeks, you'll notice an increase in stamina. If you're eating healthier, you may even lose a little weight this month.
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You don't need access to free weights or weight machines to build strength. There are many ways to build muscle without ever lifting a weight. Try toning exercises from a dvd using an exercise ball, medicine ball, or bands. Kettlebells can also be used for a very effective and challenging strength training workout. Wrist and ankle weights are perfect for added resistance during walking or jogging. You can also fit in strength training with simple calisthenics. Do several exercises throughout the day as you go about your daily activities. You'll reap the same results, without committing to another workout each day.
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One or two of your workouts each week should focus mostly on flexibility. I like to do flexibility exercises before bed. There are actually yoga dvds that are made specifically for bedtime. You'll decrease your stress as you become more flexible. Pilates is another form of exercise that focuses on flexibility. Pilates builds lean, strong muscles as well.