Workouts You Can Do From A Hotel Room

As you spent what felt like an eternity in your house building a home gym with all the equipment you thought you'd never buy before the COVID-19 pandemic hit, you may have developed a pretty consistent and effective workout routine that you don't want to give up even for a few days or a week. However, now the world is emerging from its cocoon, and it's vacation time. Or perhaps work is sending you on short business trips again. You're not comfortable using a hotel's fitness room after avoiding the gym for nearly two years, so what do you do for exercise when you don't have your home treadmill or spin bike and certainly don't want to pack 75 pounds worth of weights in your suitcase?

You work out in your hotel room, of course. There may not be a ton of space and you might be using your own body weight, but that doesn't mean you can't stick to your overall fitness goals with just a bit of modification. So, what workouts can you do from a cramped hotel room that won't cramp your fitness goals?

Bodyweight workouts can be effective

Bodyweight workouts are defined as any workout you can do without any piece of equipment and just your own body, which is used as your weight resistance tool. Examples of bodyweight exercises include jumping jacks, pushups, squats, and lunges. You might think you can only get an effective workout with heavy dumbbells or other pieces of fitness equipment. However, Mayo Clinic asserts that bodyweight exercises can be just as effective as the moves you would do using gym equipment.

According to Runtastic, bodyweight workouts can also work muscle groups you miss while sitting down at a larger weight machine. You can also build more muscle in a shorter workout when just using your own body weight. That doesn't mean it has to become a replacement for equipment workouts if you don't prefer them, but when you're in a pinch in a hotel room and want to get a quick workout in, they are often your most convenient option.

How to warm up before your hotel room workout

Just like at the gym, do not forget to warm up before moving into your main workout. Per Smarter Travel, a warmup in a small hotel room can consist of 1 minute of jumping jacks, 1 minute of high knees, a half-minute of leg swings, another half-minute of arm swings, and finally, 30 seconds of core twists. Once your blood is flowing and your muscles are warm, you're good to go. 

You can even get in a quick cardio burst before heading into your bodyweight exercises by doing a single leg run by using a lunge position to propel your arms and legs forward, alternating each arm and leg until you hit 30 reps, according to Shape.

Now, it's time to start working on your main set before heading out for a business meeting or relaxing by the ocean or pool. You can start with your upper body and one of the most popular bodyweight exercises around, the pushup, which works your biceps, chest, shoulders, and even your core. You can do them on your toes in a tall plank position and then dip your body to the floor as far as you can go. If you want to modify them, you can do them on your knees and aim for two to three sets of 12 reps.

Hotel room furniture can come in handy

Next, move on to 12 reps of tricep dips, which work your chest, deltoids, upper back, and of course, those pesky triceps that can never seem to get as solid as you want them. Per Smarter Travel, you can use your hotel room bed by placing your arms behind you with your elbows at a 90-degree angle. Keep your back straight for support, bend your knees, and dip up and down for 12 reps. If you don't want to use the bed, you can do the same thing on the floor as a modification.

The hotel room chair comes in handy for single-leg stands. Sit down on the chair with both feet planted firmly on the floor. Lift one leg, and then lean your body forward using your core strength to stand on one leg. Sit back down and repeat with the other leg for 12 reps. This exercise works your core, hamstrings, glutes, and quads. 

Get your lower body working

What would any bodyweight workout be without squats, something that is surprisingly easy to do in a hotel room. While you might be used to using free weights for more resistance, you can easily do 12 squats without any weights at all, working your glutes, hamstrings, quads, and even your core, according to Smarter Travel. Just stand hip-width apart and lower your body, ensuring your knees don't go past your toes.

Next come hip hinges, where all you have to do is bend from the hip with your core pulled in tight and your back flat for 12 reps, working both your lower back and your core. Hip hinges can easily flow into leg raises, in which you lift each leg to the side at a 45 or 90-degree angle, depending on your flexibility, also for 12 reps.

While you're standing, you can go right into a standing bicycle crunch to work your core. Place your fingertips behind your head, bring up one leg with a bent knee and twist, then do the same with the other, until you've reached 12 reps.

Your hotel room can also become a piece of exercise equipment by doing a traditional wall sit. Lean your back against the wall, squat down until your knees are parallel to the floor, and keep this position for 60 seconds (via Spartan).

How to finish your hotel room workout

What workout would be complete without planks? You can do them on your elbows or forearms, making sure your back is straight, and holding the position for 30-60 seconds with your core tightly engaged the entire time. Next, come side planks that work your core's oblique muscles. Lay on your side with both legs extended and lift up from your forearm, holding the position for about 30 seconds before switching and doing the same thing on the other side, per Smarter Travel

You can even try what's known as a Dolphin plank, which can be a very effective ab workout. To begin, get yourself into a traditional plank position on your forearms. Then, press down through your shoulders and arms while lifting your hips upwards, before lowering back into the plank position. For optimal results, repeat this 15 times (via Shape).

Finally, get those calf muscles in shape by doing heel lifts, which are as simple as they sound. Simply lift your heel, then hold the position for a few seconds, and lower. If you feel strong enough, you can do heel lifts holding onto nothing, but if you need stability, grab onto the back of a chair. Do this for 12 reps and your hotel room workout is now complete.