If you're under the impression that you need a pricey gym membership to lose weight, think again. As a certified strength and conditioning specialist, I believe that training at a gym is an excellent idea, but for many individuals, going to one just isn't the right fit. If you find yourself in this grouping, you may not feel comfortable training around other people or you simply don't have the time to commute to and from the gym. Luckily, you can lose weight and get into stellar shape with home workouts. Many of my female clients train from home and achieve successful weight loss. So, I'm here to share five of the best at-home strength workouts for women to lose weight.
When it comes to home equipment, all you need are resistance bands, dumbbells, and a workout bench. As far as exercises are concerned, emphasizing mostly compound movements is key. This will help you build lean muscle, which allows you to burn more calories at rest so you can lose weight.
Keep reading to learn all about my five best at-home strength workouts for women to lose weight. Perform three to four sets of the following.
1. Dumbbell Front Squats (x10-12 reps)
Hold a pair of dumbbells at your shoulders. Maintain a tight core as you hinge your hips back and squat to the floor until your quads are parallel to it. Drive through your heels and hips to rise back up, flexing your quads and glutes to finish.
2. Band Rows (x15 reps)
Wrap a resistance band around a sturdy pole/beam. Grip the handles with your palms facing each other, and take a few steps back to get solid tension on the bands. Pull the handles toward you, squeezing your shoulder blades together at the end of the movement. Straighten your arms out, and stretch your shoulder blades forward before performing another rep.
3. Dumbbell Walking Lunges (x10-12 reps per leg)
Hold a dumbbell in each hand. Step forward with one leg, and firmly plant your foot on the floor. Lower your body with control until your back knee gently touches the ground. Walk forward with your other leg, and repeat.
4. Bent-Over Lateral Raises (x15 reps)
Hold a pair of lighter dumbbells, and bend your torso forward to about 45 degrees. Keeping your chest up and your core tight, pull your arms back toward you, squeezing the back of your shoulders at the top of the movement. Lower the weights in a controlled manner, maintaining tension in the back of the shoulders.
1. Dumbbell Deadlifts (x12 reps)
Place a dumbbell between your legs. Keeping your back straight, grip the top part of the dumbbell with both hands. Drive through your legs and hips, squeezing your glutes hard at the top. Lower the dumbbell back down to the floor before performing another rep.
2. Flat Dumbbell Bench Press (x10-12 reps)
Lie flat on a workout bench with a dumbbell in each hand. Extend both arms over your body. Then, lower the weights while keeping your elbows slightly tucked in. Once you achieve a solid stretch at the bottom, press the weights back up. Flex your chest and triceps hard at the top.
3. Dumbbell Reverse Lunges (x10 reps per leg)
Hold a dumbbell in each hand. Take a long stride back with one leg. Firmly plant your heel on the floor, and lower into a lunge until your back knee touches the ground. Push through with your front leg to rise up, flexing your quads and glutes to finish. Perform all reps on one side before switching to the other.
4. Overhead Band Triceps Extensions (x15 reps)
Wrap a resistance band at the bottom of a sturdy beam or pole, and grip the handles. Spin around, and lift your arms so the band is behind you. Bend at your elbows to where your biceps touch your forearms to get a deep tricep stretch. Once they touch, extend your arms, and flex your triceps hard at the top.
1. Standing Dumbbell Shoulder Press (x10-12 reps)
Position both dumbbells by your shoulders, making sure your palms are facing each other. Keep your core tight, and squeeze your glutes while pressing the dumbbells up, flexing your shoulders and triceps at the top. Lower the dumbbells using control.
2. Band Kneeling Lat Pulldowns (x12-15 reps)
Wrap a resistance band around a pull-up bar, and assume a kneeling position. Maintain a tight core as you drive your elbows back to your hips, squeezing your lats. Get a solid stretch at the top.
3. Dumbbell Pushups (x10-12 reps)
Place a pair of dumbbells on the floor just outside shoulder-width; the weights should be turned in a bit to form a "V" shape. Next, get into a pushup position where your shoulders are aligned with your wrists. Pull yourself toward the ground, and get a solid chest stretch at the bottom. Push yourself up, flexing your triceps and chest to finish.
4. Dumbbell Rows (x10-12 reps per arm)
Position your body parallel to a workout bench or a stable surface. One knee and hand should be planted on the bench for stability. Hold a dumbbell in your opposite hand, extending that arm toward the ground. Row the weight up to your hip as you squeeze your lats and upper back. Then, lower the dumbbell before the next rep.
5. Standing Dumbbell Curls (x10-12 reps)
Grab a pair of dumbbells with your palms facing up. With a tight core, curl the weight up, flexing your biceps hard at the top. Resist on the way down until your arms are fully extended.
1. Dumbbell Romanian Deadlifts (x10-12 reps)
Hold a dumbbell in each hand in front of you. With a tall chest and soft knees, hinge your hips back, and lower the dumbbells down your thighs. Then, push your hips forward, bring the dumbbells up, and squeeze your glutes.
2. Dumbbell Goblet Squats (1.5 reps; x8-10 reps)
Hold a dumbbell in front of your body with your feet planted just outside shoulder-width. Keeping your core tight, push your hips back and squat down to about parallel or slightly below. Rise up halfway, then come down to parallel before standing up.
3. Bulgarian Split Squats (x10 reps per leg)
Stand tall while holding a dumbbell in each hand. Position your back foot on a workout bench or couch, and step out with your other foot about two to three feet away from the bench. Lower your body into a split squat until your back knee almost touches the floor. Push yourself back up to standing, flexing your glutes and quads as you rise.
4. Heel-Elevated Single-Leg Glute Bridges (x10-15 reps per leg)
Position yourself in front of a bench or sturdy surface. Place one foot on the bench with the heel down and toes up. Drive through that heel, flexing your glute hard at the top of the movement for two seconds. If you feel like you're using too much hamstring, adjust your body closer.
1. Incline Dumbbell Bench Press (x10-12 reps)
Lie down on an incline bench with a dumbbell in each hand resting on your thighs. Place your feet firmly on the floor. Then, press the weights above your body as you extend both arms. When you lower the weights, bring your shoulders back and down into the bench.
2. Dumbbell Rows (supinated grip; x10-12 reps per arm)
Position yourself parallel to a bench. Firmly plant one hand and knee on the surface to maintain balance. Grip a dumbbell with your opposite hand, keeping your palm up and your arm extended straight toward the floor. Make sure your chest stays tall and your core tight, then pull the dumbbell up to your hip, squeezing your lats and upper back at the end. Extend your arm back down.
3. Band Lateral Raise (x15 reps)
Step on the band, and hold the handles. With your arms out to the side, soften your elbows and raise the weights laterally to just about parallel to the floor. Squeeze hard, then lower while maintaining tension in your delts. Return to the start position before performing another rep.
4. Dumbbell Triceps Extensions (x10-12 reps)
Position yourself flat on your back on a bench for the dumbbell triceps extensions. With your palms facing each other, press the dumbbells up. Keep your shoulders straight, and bend your elbows back so the dumbbells come toward you. As soon as your forearms touch your biceps, reverse the motion, flexing your triceps to finish.
5. Dumbbell Hammer Curls (x10-12 reps)
To perform your dumbbell hammer curls, grab a pair of dumbbells. Use a neutral grip, and make sure both hands face each other. Keep your shoulders pulled back as you curl the dumbbells up, flexing your forearms and biceps. Squeeze hard at the top of the curling motion, then resist on the way down.