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Watch: Complete at home workout routine for busy parents

Belfast PT and nutritionist Alan Waterman shares a workout routine even busy parents will be able to find the time for

By Alan Waterman

It's not easy being a parent. It's hard enough having to face all the typical challenges parenthood brings, finding the time to do focus on doing something for yourself is almost certainly one of the toughest!

And in between juggling school runs, homework tantrums and playing taxi for all the extra-curricular activities, it's no wonder that many parents struggle to find the time to get to the gym.

The good news? You can make a start right at home with my quick, but highly effective home workout.

Check out my top seven exercises for shaping up without any gym equipment in the comfort of your very own living room.

Negative press-up

Struggle with regular press-ups? Ditch the 'on-the-knees' version and just focus on performing the negative (lowering) portion of the lift. Doing so still allows us to recruit our core, as well as emphasizing the strength-building portion of each rep.

1 & 1/4 squats

Normal squats may be too easy for some, but adding an additional partial range of motion can transform this into a much harder exercise without the need for extra added weights which we might not have available. Need more of a challenge? Perform them at a slower tempo.

Chair dips

Although maybe not the best exercise for everyone, depending on shoulder health, dips are a great upper-body exercise for those that can perform them pain-free, and will provide enough of a challenge without the need for adding weight.

Braced one leg Romanian deadlift

Given the unstable nature of the exercise, performing them with a support allows us to focus on proper technique, without the added challenge of instability. Those that need an added challenge can perform them with no support, or again by slowing the tempo of each rep.

Back burners

Given that most don't have a chin-up bar at home, finding a challenging upper-back exercise can be tricky. Back burners are a great alternative and allow us to train these often under-exercised muscles, helping to prevent upper back and neck pain, as well as improving posture.

Feet-elevated glute bridge

The glutes are typically an under-recruited muscle group, but deserve as much attention as any other (particularly for helping avoid lower back pain.) Performing these with feet elevated pose more of a challenge than with feet on the floor, forcing us to engage our glutes harder on each rep. Remember though, you must focus on squeezing the glutes through the upward portion of the movement!


Building a sturdy core is essential, especially if you spend your days lugging around backpacks, buggies, and sports-bags. Deadbugs are a fantastic exercise for helping build that stability, and keeping your lower back health in check.

The living room workout:

* Negative press-up: 3 × 4-6

* 1 & 1/4 squats: 3 x 8-12

* Chair dips: 3 x 8-12

* Braced one leg RDL: 3 x 8-12 each

* Back burners: 2/3 x 12-20

* Feet-elevated glute bridge: 2/3 x 12-20

* Deadbugs; 3 x 8-12

Want more tips on how to make easy and effective changes in lifestyle, even as a busy parent?

Why not grab your free copy of my Little Black Book Of Weight Loss here and check out our Facebook and Instagram pages for daily tips, advice and content.

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