Monday, July 1, 2013

Quick Early Morning Full Body Workout

At Who Needs a Gym we try to make exercise easy and simple so everyone can get involved. My basic philosophy is that to get fit you don't need to go to a gym. Gym has many benefits and there are many reasons to go to a gym, but improving your fitness and getting stronger doesn't necessarily require an expensive gym membership fee. Anyway, I have been doing the 100 Push-up challenge over the past few weeks. I also intended to do the Armstrong pull-up program at the same time but sadly I haven't really gotten into that yet. But what I am doing are push-ups everyday.

After doing the program for a week or so I decided to develop a quick, full body workout that hits upper body, core and legs. A set of a typical workout now looks something like this.

  • Pushups
  • Core Exercise
  • Leg Exercise
  • Cardio
For core exercises I do a few of the core exercises from the P90X Ab Ripper X workout. So maybe I starte with In & Outs and then next set do Crunchy Frog etc. For legs I will do lunges, squats, jump reach squats or whatever I can think of and then for Cardio, I have a stepping machine at home that I walk on for 100 steps. Once I have completed the set I take a 2 minute break and then do it again. Depending on the day I will do either 3 or 5 sets.

A complete 3 or 5 set workout will take about 20 minutes so you cannot say you don't have the time to do it! You do!

Good Luck

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Creating New Habits, Not Excuses

The whole point of Who Needs a Gym is to encourage people to get healthy, live healthy and be healthy, but to keep it simple. My basic belief is that for a person to be healthy and fit they do not need to join a gym or try expensive diets and supplements to get to a healthy weight and to be fit. I have achieved fitness and a healthy weight by watching what I eat and through regular, home based exercise.

I recently read a great book called "The Power of Habit" by Charles Duhigg. The book is brilliant. What I especially liked was how he brought attention to the habit loop (cue-behavior-reward) and how, to make lasting change we need to believe that we can change. I especially like the one part of the book that I quote extensively below and that is related to the intention of this blog (emphasis are mine):

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Have Fun and Enjoy

Whatever exercise you choose to do, what ever activities you do to pursue your health goals, remember to always, as Michael Jordan says, "Just Play. Have Fun. Enjoy the Game." My cat agrees!

DSCN9322 - 01

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Cycling - Fantastic Recreational Exercise

Anyone who knows me knows I love cycling. I think cycling is a top notch recreational pastime that helps with overall fitness. Now note I do not cycle for fitness, I cycle for fun and always enjoy getting on my bicycle and exploring the hills and vales of Taiwan. I have documented many of my cycling trips on my personal blog @ Cycling in Taiwan. You can also follow my cycling exploits on Strava: Paul or Garmin Connect: Paul. Now as I said earlier, I don't use cycling as my primary fitness tool but rather as a recreational pastime that has obvious health benefits. Of course, cycling is an optional exercise tool that can easily be fitted into a regular fitness plan.

Sunday, June 9, 2013

Combination Program - Pullups & Pushups

Sorry for the silence at Who Needs a Gym over the past couple of months. I got injured and busy and didn't do a lot of workouts. I still managed to control my diet and maintain my weight loss. Anyway, I am back on the exercise cycle and starting to do more workouts. This morning I started a combination of the 100 Pushup Challenge (previously outlined in Pushups - Beginner to Advanced) and the Armstrong Pull-up Program (previously outlined in Pullup Program - Starting Tomorrow).

I was meant to start the Armstrong Pull-up Program a feaw months ago but the day before I wanted to start I injured my shoulder and it is only starting to feel right now. Since my shoulder was injured I also struggled to do push ups but I have finally started to be able to do both push-ups and pull-ups. I did a few trials on the weekend and the shoulder is able to support my weight again and go through the full range of motion with no pain. Happily I started the push-up program this morning and will start the pull-up program again in an hour or so.

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Losing Weight the Easy Way

At Who Needs a Gym I want to encourage people to maintain a healthy weight. Most people I know (including myself) are overweight and have struggled for years to lose any weight and burn off that unwanted belly fat (or just fat in general). And yes, we have tried diets and quick fix solutions but we lose a little then gain it all back, and sometimes more than we lost. So how to lose weight effectively?

If you carry on reading I will tell you the DIRTY LITTLE SECRET about losing weight. Carry on reading AND YOU WILL....OK only kidding!

The trick is to EAT LESS, EAT HEALTHIER and MOVE MORE! It really is that simple AND that hard.

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Stair Walking Workout - Accessible to All

The easiest and simplest Who Needs a Gym workouts are accessible to ALL - anybody can walk up stairs of any age or fitness level. Even if you can only walk up ONE step - do it! Do it once, then step down and do it again! Do multiple reps like that until you are tired or your joints are sore. But ANYBODY and I mean ANYBODY who can walk, can walk up stairs!

The Building I live in

Pushups - Beginner to Advanced

At Who Needs a Gym I want to make exercise accessible to everyone irrespective of age or level of fitness. Unfortunately some people have said to me in various forums that some of the workouts I have put out there are a little difficult for the the entry level person. So to enable you, the BEGINNER, to do more pushups, I want to introduce the 6-week 100-pushup program. WHAT! OK, to be honest it is highly doubtful people will be able to hit 100 reps after 6 weeks BUT, if you want to do MORE pushups you have to START doing pushups.

Monday, March 25, 2013

Park Workouts - You can be fit at any age!

Here at Who Needs a Gym I will be highlighting and emphasizing park & home workouts and that it is possible to be fit at any age. Park/home workouts are easy to do and cheap. When I did P90X a few years ago, I did it all in the small park near my house (except the Yoga and Stretching). I will speak about that more later. For now I want to emphasize that here in Asia many people (and especially old folks) often exercise in the park. We saw the guy in the picture below exercising in a park in Osaka, Japan. Look how in shape the guy is. I don't know if the kendo stick is his only workout program, but still, it is great to see people his age out there doing a pretty intense workout.

Osaka Samuraii - Tennoji Park
Cool In-shape Older Man Working out in Tennoji Park

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Pullup Program - Starting Tomorrow

So you want to improve the number of pullups you can do huh! Well, me too! Pullups are tough (yes I know, very tough). Right now I can do about four narrow grip pullups, two wide grip pullups and eight chin-ups, but I am not really happy about those numbers. Would like to up the numbers. Ideally I would love to be able to do 20 pullups of each type but have been struggling to improve the numbers.

Also, if you CANNOT DO ANY PULLUPS, no problem, you can also start doing this program, but just do the program using assisted pullups (e.g. with a chair) OR by doing negatives i.e. jumping onto the bar and then slowly lowering yourself down. Do note that pullups are important for building back muscles and are probably the king of all upper body exercises (second only to power-ups). So anyway, what is the program?

Friday, March 22, 2013

Take a Walk - Up Elephant Mountain

Here at Who Needs a Gym I want to encourage you to get out and exercise at home and in your neighborhood. You don't need to go to a gym to get fit. You just need to be creative. One of the best exercises you can do is to take a good walk everyday.

On Elephant Mountain
On Elephant Mountain

A 10-Minute Workout

A simple 10-minute Who Needs a Gym Friday home workout routine that includes squats, pushups, chair dips and leg raises.

OK admission time: this was meant to be 10 sets of 10 reps each for a total of 100 reps for each exercise. However, I had to stop after 4 sets. My body wasn't feeling right and sometimes, when that happens, I do stop. Never put yourself at risk! And I mean NEVER. 

So this workout was 4 sets of Chair Dips, Squats, Pushups and Squats. Each set had 10 reps. Total movements: 160. I managed to complete the workout in a little under 10 minutes.

Round 1 ~ Round 4

10 x Chair Dips
10 x Squats
10 x Pushups
10 x Leg Raises

 Try it for yourself and see how far you go and do post your results in the comments section below.


Tens Workout - Pushups and Squats

A simple 20-minute Who Needs a Gym home workout routine that includes squats and pushups.

Simple workout really. 10 sets of 10 reps each of both squats and pushups. My time, 20 minutes and 42 seconds. Total reps of each exercise: 100. Total number of movements: 200.

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Countdown Workout - Pushups, Squats and Leg Raises

A quick 12-minute Who Needs a Gym home workout routine that includes squats, pushups and leg raises.

Quick workout that took me 12 minutes to finish. If you finish it you will do 65 reps of each exercise (a total of 195 reps) and hopefully you will feel the burn too. If you are brave you can head all the way down to 1 rep of each exercise (a total of 15 rounds) and a total rep count for each exercise then would be 120 reps.


Do you struggle to find time to go to the gym? Do you think gym fees are to expensive? Do you hate working out inside after a full day in the office? Do you think the gyms are too crowded? Are you shy and worried about other people watching you? Many people find many reasons not to go to the gym! You may be one of them!

Here we hope to show you and inspire you to find new ways to exercise at home, in the park, in your day to day life. This doesn't mean we are against gyms! Just that there are many other ways to get into shape and not everyone is aware of them or motivated to do them. Here we hope to inspire and encourage and get you all moving and shaking!