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January 27, 2019: Gym-Free Workouts

My weekly Get Your Stuff Together Sunday email series gives you one actionable focus for the week that will make your life a little easier.

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Can’t make it to the gym? Get a one minute workout in. Really! This week, we’re going to talk about “snack-sized” workouts you can do without even stepping into a gym.

I have heard clients say that because they couldn’t make it to the gym, they weren’t able to get a workout in. Some of these reasons for not working out may sound familiar: “I didn’t have any equipment,” “there’s not enough space”, or “I didn’t have enough time.” Let’s address all three of those excuses and give you a few strategies on how to overcome them.

Exercise Snacking

Exercise snacking is doing brief bouts of roughly 1-5 minutes of high-intensity exercise spread out across multiple times throughout your day. For example, when you wake up, do 1-2 minutes of movements/exercises before you shower and start your day. When you get to work, take the stairs or park further away. Did someone say, “I’ll call you back in five minutes?” Sounds like a good time to do some quick body weight squats or pushups. Need a little break from emails? Go for a quick walk around the building. Not only will you be adding a little bit of exercise in but you will be helping reduce stress, anxiety, and improving your mood.

Greasing the Groove

The term “greasing the groove” comes from Russian strength and kettlebell coach Pavel Tsastouline. He says that if you want to get stronger, you need to practice strength. In other words, strength is a skill that you can learn and improve. If you want to get better at squats, you need to do more squats. He’s right, you know.

Applying this concept of greasing the groove means throughout the day working on a specific movement pattern with high quality reps but only doing a small number reps. The purpose of this is not to go to failure (i.e., exhaustion) with each set, but to start to build a more efficiency. As you complete more repetitions, you begin to create a better pathway for the neurons to communicate with each other, which in turns makes future movements easier. This process can help build strength because, over time, as the pathway gets faster, nerve cells can fire more efficiently and the faster they can fire, the faster your muscles can contract making the movement easier.

How to Do It

First, give yourself a cue, for example have a pull up bar in your house and every time you walk by it do a couple pull ups. Once again, just doing a couple reps every hour can significantly add up by the end of the day, end of the week, and month. Second, commit to doing a few reps of pushups, squats, or anything you want to improve every hour, on the hour. If you did 10 pushups every hour starting right when you wake up by the end of the day you would be well over one hundred for the day, that’s over 700 for the week and nearly 3,000 for the month!

Everybody can find one minute a few times throughout their day to improve themselves. You don’t need equipment or much space to do a squat, pushup, or burpees or to walk a little further from the parking lot to your destination. Now get out there and make it happen!

Next Sunday, we’ll talk about how you can have a fun and healthy Super Bowl celebration.

Want some expert help with reaching your health goals painlessly? Check out my programs! We’ll get everything taken care of in a way that fits into your current lifestyle so you never have to think about your health again.

Do you have a friend who could stand to G(her)ST? Feel free to forward this!

I hope you have a wonderful week,


Kelly Morgan, Ph.D.

Tsirona -

My weekly GYSTS email give you one actionable thing to do for the week that will make you life a little easier. As "they" say, "Fail to plan; plan to fail." Get these emails (and more!) delivered right to your inbox by clicking HERE.