Any athlete or fitness enthusiast knows that no fancy tools or equipment are needed to get a proper full-body workout when cross-training. Simply lifting, pushing and pulling your own body weight is often times just the workout you need. The three most common types of body weight exercises include pull-ups, push-ups and sit-ups. Endurance gains can be made with body-weight movements by increasing the amount of repetitions. Strength gains can be made by increasing the intensity of the movement itself. Not to mention, body weight exercises are great for those who want to work out, but may not have access to fitness equipment.

A huge benefit of performing body-weight exercises is that often times these moves require more balance, core strength and flexibility. However, like all exercises each move can be readily modified to suit any level of fitness. Total body exercises are designed to hit many muscle groups at once, which make it an incredibly efficient approach to working out (especially if you don’t have a lot of time to dedicate to a cross-training workout). At the end of the day, these exercises are designed to get your heart rate up, breathing labored, fatigue a ton of muscle groups, and just require you and a floor.

Bear Crawl: The major muscles involved in this exercise are the shoulders, quadriceps, low back and upper/lower abdominals. To perform this exercise, simply drop to all fours on the ground. Making sure to keep your hands directly under your shoulders, rise up onto your feet. You can move forward,  backward and side to side while you work every major muscle group in the process. You’ll develop coordination, agility and cardiorespiratory endurance. {Difficulty level: Intermediate}

Mountain Climbers: The major muscles involved in this exercise are the hips, glutes, quadriceps, hip flexors, and upper/lower abdominals. Come to a hands and knees position on the floor. Your hands should be slightly ahead of your shoulders. Bring your left foot forward and place it on the floor under your chest. Your knee and hip are bent. Lift your right knee off the ground, making your right leg straight and strong. Brace your abdominal muscles to stabilize your spine. Pull your shoulder blades down and back. Jump and switch legs making sure both feet are leaving the ground at the same time. Make sure to keep your weight evenly distributed on both legs when performing this movement. {Difficulty level: Intermediate}

Push-Up with Single Leg Raise: The major muscles involved in this exercise are the arms, chest, hips, glutes, and core. Come to a hands and knees position with your hands directly under your shoulders. Engage the abdominals and pull the shoulder blades down your back. Reach one leg out while maintaining plank position. Slowly bend the elbows, lowering your body toward the floor. Keep the torso rigid, abdominals engaged, and the head aligned with your spine. Make sure to engage your glutes and quadriceps to help maintain stability and a rigid body. Push-up by straightening the elbows, and pressing upward through your arms. {Difficulty level: Advanced}