Try This Lazy-Day Workout The Next Time You Feel Unmotivated

Aerial view of woman lying on yoga mat looking at phone next to couch where a cat is sleeping
(Image credit: Martin Puddy / Getty Images)

We all have those days when even the thought of exercising is exhausting. Normally, that’s an indication that you need a rest day—you never want your regime to slip into overtraining. But if it’s a sense of lethargy that’s holding you back, it’s worth starting an easy workout if you can, because exercising regularly is a great way to look after both your mental and physical health.

Starting small is one of our expert tips for improving your motivation to exercise, and this session from Chris Heria, founder of calisthenics app THENX, starts small, with options to step up the challenge if you find your motivation improves once you get moving.

Heria uses bodyweight exercises so you can go straight from the couch to the first exercise, a modified burpee with no push-up and no jump at the end. You can even dial the difficulty down further by stepping in and out of the high plank position rather than jumping. Watch Heria explain the workout and demonstrate each move in the video below.

Watch Chris Herria’s “Lazy-Day” Workout

Perform each exercise for one minute, with the option to step up the difficulty every 20 seconds. For the burpee, the second 20-second block challenges you to add the push-up, while Heria includes the jump for the final 20 seconds.

Herria recommends completing at least two rounds to get the maximum benefit from the workout, but there’s nothing wrong with stopping after one round and giving yourself a pat on the back—some movement is better than no movement.

We have more exercise ideas when you think you might benefit from some activity but don’t want to push yourself. Try these eight low-impact exercises for home, this mobility routine, or some lower-intensity steady-state cardio.

Alice Porter

Alice Porter is a journalist who covers health, fitness and wellbeing, among other topics, for titles including Stylist, Fit & Well, Glamour, Cosmopolitan, Grazia, VICE and Refinery29. When she’s not writing about these topics, you can probably find her at her local CrossFit box.