A lot of people cringe at the mere thought of working out — but, more often than not, it's usually because they haven't found a form of exercise that works for them. For instance, you might shudder at the mere idea of picking up a dumbbell at the gym. And that's totally OK; you don't have to force yourself to move your body in a way that feels bad or wrong for you, and there are workouts that make you stronger without weights, not to mention show you just how much you can actually enjoy your fitness journey when you're not forcing yourself to do something you hate.
Here's the thing: Globally, people just aren't working out as much as they should, and a huge new study published in The Lancet Global Health dove into the ways that a lack of physical activity can affect your health as a whole. In the study, experts from the World Health Organization looked at data from nearly 2 million people around the world and found that, in high-income countries like the UK and the U.S., physical inactivity had proportionally risen from 32 percent in 2001 to 37 percent in 2016. Meanwhile, in low-income countries, the sedentary population remained stable at just 16 percent.
It's pretty bleak to think that one in four people around the world don't exercise enough, but there's a slight silver lining to be found here: Clearly, living in a part of the world that technically has more wealth, privileges, and resources like fancy memberships and SoulCycle classes, doesn't necessarily guarantee that you'll lead a healthy lifestyle. In other words, you don't need high-tech equipment in order to work out or stay healthy. Of course, if it suits you, do you, but the point is, none of that really matters if you hate the kind of exercise you're doing and plan to call it quits after only a few sessions. In reality, it's all about finding something that you'll actually stick with and that you'll show up for time and again.
With that in mind, if you're someone who hates weightlifting, it might be time to take a different approach to fitness — aka ditch the weights and quit forcing yourself to do workouts you loathe. There are plenty of muscle-strengthening exercises you can do right at home, many of which are beginner-friendly, but will still get your heart pumping regardless. "Bodyweight exercises build strength even without weights, simply by leveraging your own weight to work specific muscle groups," Leah Kalemba, a fitness instructor for Evolve Personal Training, Fighthouse MMA, and Moveir Dance Studio, tells Elite Daily over email.
So, if you need a starting point, here are a few bodyweight exercises to try out yourself.