Transform your body with a Backpack
Deccan Chronicle| Abhinav Mahajan
No need to get hassled with gym timings or wait for your turn on the dumbbells. Whip yourself into shape with nothing more than your backpack.
Gone are the days when people didn’t workout just because they didn’t have time to hit the gym or buying workout equipment was a little too much on their pockets. Here is a complete full body workout that will help you stay fit and in shape without the hassle of spending hours in the gym.
All you need is a backpack, some books, water bottles, laptop or anything that can be used as resistance. This is a perfect fitness routine for students and working people. It takes hardly 20 minutes to complete and you are ready to get in the best shape of your life. But before you begin the workout, make sure you do a light 5-minute warm-up in the form of light jogging or stretches.
Backpack bicep curls, overhead backpack triceps extensions
These two exercises are to be performed one after another in the form of superset. They are best for developing a good set of arms. Do the backpack bicep curls first and without taking rest follow it up with the overhead backpack triceps extensions. Once you have completed the two, rest for 1 minute and then repeat the same.
Backpack bicep curls
Stand with backpack in one hand and start performing curls. Breathe in at the bottom position and breathe out at the top position
Overhead backpack triceps extensions
Stand with backpack behind your neck and your upper arm perpendicular to the floor. Breathe in and without moving your upper arm push the backpack upwards till your lower arm and upper arm are in same line. Breathe out at the top You should do 15 repetitions, repeated over three times.
Overhead shoulder backpack press
This exercise will build well-rounded shoulders. Stand straight by holding the top handle of the backpack and keeping your upper arm parallel to the floor. Breathe in and push the backpack overhead and breathe out at the top lockout position. Slowly lower the backpack and repeat the same. You should do 12 repetitions, repeated over three times with 45 seconds of rest in between each set.
Squats are a great way not only to grow your lower body (which most people ignore) but it also helps to increase strength and posture for upper body exercises. Start with your feet a bit more than shoulder width apart, toes pointing in the direction of knees. Breathe in, brace your abs, and squat by moving your hips first. Later you can squat parallel to the knees or go ass-to-grass depending on your mobility. End the movement by exploding from the bottom position and breathing out at the top. Do 10 to 12 repetitions, repeated over three times and taking 45 seconds rest in between sets. For best results keep increasing the weight in backpack every week.
Bent over backpack rows
Bent over rows is a great exercise for a well-developed back. Using the backpack as resistance, bend forward with the handles of the backpack on your hands. Make sure to have a neutral spine and keep your body tight. This will be your starting position. Now breathe in, and pull the backpack towards your chest and breathe out at the top position. Now slowly lower the backpack and repeat the same.
Do 10 repetitions, repeated over three times with 45 seconds rest in between sets. A tip — When pulling the backpack to chest, imagine pulling with your elbows first than your hands. This will help you get a better activation of your back.
It is a great exercise for your complete upper body development, especially the chest. Start in the push-ups position with your hands on the ground and a bit wider than shoulder width apart. Tuck your elbows slightly in. Breathe in and perform a push-up by touching your chest to the ground. Now exhale and explode to the start position while contracting your chest. Use the backpack to increase the resistance for this exercise. You should do 10 repetitions, repeated over three times and 45 seconds rest in between.
— The writer is a fitness professional and nutritionist