Gyms and exercise classes have officially closed across America to stop the spread of the global coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. With self-isolation being required, we are at home and needing to rearrange our lives based on the regulations in place. While we are at home, this doesn’t mean that our workout routines have to stop, though. In fact, this is a time where you can take the (albeit required) time at home to focus on your health and either start or continue with a workout routine.
Exercises to do at home and tools you can use
Working out at home may mean you have to shift what exercises you do, but there are plenty of ways you can get a proper workout in even without the fancy equipment and exercise environments!
Download a fitness app
In today’s digital age, we have all sorts of apps at our fingertips. So download a fitness app to make your workouts at home more effective and be confident in your progress. For example, 30 Day Fitness Challenge has guided workouts, programs, and even specific cardio exercises for men that would be perfect to knock out right now. After the 30 days, (which as of now we are told will be around when the mandatory self-isolation will ease up), you’ll gain more confidence and trust with your body, and feel tangible results!
Do bodyweight exercises
Bodyweight exercises are great exercises to do at home because they are effective and do not require any equipment. Especially for those of us who have been required to be at home before being able to purchase some home equipment, bodyweight exercises are a way to stay in shape while at home.
Some body exercises to do at home are: bodyweight squats, walking lunges, dumbbell rows, jumping jacks, planks, lateral leg raises, marching glute bridge, mountain climbers, donkey kicks, curtsy lunges with side kick, froggers, and high knees.
Dance is a great way to burn calories
Dancing is both uplifting and a great workout! You can dance to your favorite song and burn calories while you are it, guaranteeing a smile on your face or at least an uplifting feeling afterwards! Take the time to create a playlist of your favorite songs to dance to, and you can even set aside a certain time of day to ‘just dance’. There are also dance-cardio workouts that you can do to really work up a sweat and join in on organized classes.
If you and your friends or family love to dance, spend some time learning a choreographed routine (either with those you live with or via FaceTime). This is a way to have fun, pass the time, and break a sweat.
YouTube is your friend
YouTube is a great resource to use for free workout videos and inspiration. It is fun to mix up the workouts that you do, and with such unique offerings available on YouTube, you’re bound to find at least a few different workouts that you enjoy!
To name a few, you can YouTube videos on yoga for beginners, full-body circuit workout, arms and abs BBG workout, foam-rolling and stretch routine, resistance band workout, dance cardio workout, and hybrid HIIT workouts.
You can also use YouTube to search how to do a specific exercise so you can ensure that you are following proper form.
How to stay motivated at home
Especially when it’s new to you, it is natural to go through a phase where you are figuring out the whole workout from home thing and how you can make it work for you. You may face struggles in staying motivated and staying on top of your game, especially when you’ve established a workout routine that really works for you. But you can keep motivation high while working out from home! It just takes a little creativity and thinking outside of the box for effective ways. Try out a couple of these tips and find new ways to keep yourself stay motivated, as everyone is different!
Plan a session with a friend via FaceTime
Many people find that they have more motivation to workout when they have an exercise buddy. So when you are at home and trying to stay motivated, plan a session with a friend via FaceTime. You can set up your video call so you can both follow along to the same workout, as this can make things a lot more fun, and it is a way to encourage healthy competition and accountability.
If you both find a workout online that you enjoy, you can also plan to do it every week together, so it makes it more fun, and you have something fun to laugh about afterwards!
Create a designated space
Having a designated space to exercise at home takes away the extra time and potential frustration that having to set up your space may cause, especially when you are used to exercising outside of the home. Many people also find that they are more productive and feel happier in their homes when they have designated spaces for work, exercise, and life.
Keep track of progress
When you keep track of progress and perhaps even write down a goal, you are giving yourself something to work towards to. It is a way you can keep motivation up and keep yourself wanting to exercise even while the temptation of relaxing at home may be present. If you are someone who likes to-do lists especially, write out your progress or track it on your phone so you have a visual something to check in with.
Shake it up and keep it interesting
When you exercise and do the same thing over and over again, it is only natural that you may lose some motivation (even if you really love it). So shake it up and keep it interesting to keep yourself motivated while exercising at home!
If you’re used to doing bodyweight exercises, for example, try some yoga and a dance class to get your body moving. Since so many fitness programs and classes are available for free right now, this is the time to try out something new. Who knows what you could end up liking and wanting to incorporate into your exercise routine for the long run!
Stick to your workout schedule
If you are used to working out after your workday end or right when you wake up in the morning, for example, stick to that! Where you workout may have to change, but that doesn’t mean that when you workout has to as well (depending on the needs of the rest of your schedule, of course.) So stick to your routine and even pencil it into your calendar so you can keep some sense of normalcy.
If you like to follow a class online, you can find classes that work into your workout schedule or that have replays you can follow along when it is convenient for you.
Set your workout clothes out at night
If you love a morning workout, setting your workout clothes at night gives you that reminder to get moving and get exercising. When you make it easy to workout at home by doing something as simple as setting out your clothes, you help to keep your motivation high and keep any potential excuses are minimal!
Make yourself an ‘exercise vision board’
When you are training for positivity, such as feeling confident and healthy or so that you are able to go on that one hike you’ve always dreamt of going on, you’ll find yourself naturally wanting to exercise more. So make yourself an exercise vision board where you get real with your motivation, and you print out photos that exemplify your motivation. For example, if you want to build up the flexibility and strength to start rock climbing or kickboxing, print out photos of yourself at your strongest and photos of a boxing ring or rock-climbing wall.
Visualization is a powerful tool! If you already know that you are a visual person, this is a step to start out with when out begin working out at home.
Benefits of working out at home
Aside from being necessary in times like these, working out at home has many advantages and benefits. While it is perfectly ok to miss your normal workout routine that may include group fitness classes and the gym, it is worth looking at the benefits of working out at home as well!
Offers max flexibility in busy schedules
When you workout from home, you have the flexibility in your busy schedule to fit a workout in when it works for you. You don’t have to factor getting your things together for the gym or class, actually getting to your place of exercise, exercising, and getting home. Instead, you can have things set up at your house and easily fit a standard 1-hour gym session or 1-hour cycling class within a 30-45 minute time period. When time is short, the most important thing is that you still get an effective workout. Working out from home ensures you can put the focus on exercising for as long as you can before needing to shift to the next part of your day.
Comfort and privacy
Working out from home offers you comfort and privacy. You can try out new exercises and simply feel free to focus on exercise rather than what or who could be around you.
Some people feel more confident when they get ready for the gym and to go out in public, and working out from home also eliminates this extra step.
You are completely free to be yourself when you workout from home, and you have the comfort and privacy of getting to not only exercise solo but also shower immediately in your own home!
When working out from home, you and whoever you live with are the only ones who use your workout area and gym equipment, which makes it a lot more sanitary. You are in charge of cleaning practices and don’t have to worry about other people who use the same equipment. Especially during a pandemic, having a more sanitary workout environment can make you feel more comfortable to actually workout.
At the gym and at workout classes, you are on a certain timetable. Whether it’s someone waiting to use the machine after you or a class length or rest period that you would prefer to just be a little longer, work out classes, and the gym can make you feel rushed at times. When you workout at home, you are on your own timetable, and you don’t have to worry about not getting a turn on your favorite machine during the 30 minutes you have to be at the gym. Workout for as long as you’d like at home and spend as much time as you’d like (safely) with the equipment and of your choosing.
Huge money save
It’s no secret that gym memberships and class passes add up quickly. Working out at home saves you a lot of money, both in the short term and in the long term. If you like to have equipment for your workouts, you could even consider investing in a few key pieces to do your favorite exercises, such as adjustable dumbbells, a yoga mat, a TRX Suspension Training kit, jump rope, etc. The price of a couple pieces of equipment is substantially lower than even a few months of a gym membership depending on where you are going.
If you like and get into the workout from home routine, you might even keep working out at home even after the pandemic is over! Plus, even if you find yourself going back to the gym or re-joining your exercise classes, you will feel more confident working out from home on those days you just don’t have the time, energy, or motivation to make it to the gym or class… but you do to workout at home!