Erin Oprea is one of the hottest names in Nashville's music scene, but you won't find her on stage at the Grand Ole Opry or the Bluebird Café anytime soon. She's more likely to be behind the scenes, or on the tour bus, or FaceTiming with the talent who's about to take the stage at either of those places.
The personal trainer's made a name for herself helping Carrie Underwood get her toned legs and Kelsea Ballerini her ridiculously flat abs, and now, she's expanding her empire with a virtual workout series. Every Monday at 6 p.m. CT, Erin hosts a live hourlong workout and Q&A session — where people can ask her anything health or fitness-related — that you can log onto and join. It's done through Google Hangouts, so you can set up your phone to record yourself as you exercise in your living room, as Erin guides you through the class, correcting your form as needed. Just like she would her A-list clientele when they're touring on the road.
"I believe in a no-excuse workout, where you're having fun, you don't need much for equipment, and you can do it anywhere, so you have no reason not to," she says.
Given Erin's ability to turn any space into a gym, I had to find out: What are the absolute essentials you should have in your home — that won't cost you a car payment or take up half your living room? Here are her must-haves, and the easy exercises to go with them. (And, if you'd like to sign up for one of Erin's classes, you can do so through Eventbrite.)
One Basic Set Of Weights — Or Wine Bottles
"I recommend a basic set of weights, the kind you can get anywhere — 3, 5, 8, or 10-pound weights, whatever you're comfortable with — but honestly, some people don't have weights at all, and we make that work," Erin explains. "Some people use wine bottles or canned food; I don't judge."
When she's working with Carrie, Erin likes to incorporate a lot of squats and lunges to keep the "Cry Pretty" singer's legs toned. The combo is her fave, though: "We do a lot of squat-to-lunge moves, because they're so effective."
A Yoga Mat
"You need something to lay on, but you could even just use a towel," Erin says. "You just need that width of space to get a full workout in."
Plus, it's good to have that support when you're working your abs on the floor. One of Kelsea's favorites is hip dips, where you get on your elbows in a plank position, dropping your hips toward the mat from side to side. "We'll do 20 seconds of that, then 10 seconds of just holding a plank, and repeat that for eight rounds," Erin says. "It's just 4 minutes, but you feel it."
Towels Or Paper Plates
Erin also swears by doing slides to work your core. "You can buy actual slides on Amazon, but all you really need are two towels, if you have hardwood floors, or if you have carpet, grab two paper plates," she says.
Get in a plank position, step on the towels or plates, and slide one leg at a time up toward your stomach. You'll have to use your arms and abs to keep yourself stable, and it won't take long before you feel the burn.
That's really all you need, Erin says. No giant machines taking up half a room — no rearranging your whole floor plan, breaking a sweat before you even break a sweat. Now you really have no excuse not to work out. Other than, you know, not wanting to.
Follow Miescisko on Instagram.