Fit + FEstive At-Home WOrkouts
Finding extra time to make it to the gym (or attending limited group classes due to Covid) is a challenge any time, but add in the holiday season and making it to the gym is a priority that often falls lower and lower on the to-do list.
I've created a helpful list of At-Home Workouts options using household items or bodyweight so making almost excuse proof!
GYM WORKOUT vS. HOME WORKOUT
Of course, there will be two camps; Pro-Gym goers and Team Home Workouts. Each has pros and cons, but it mostly comes down to your personality, financial means, space, and schedule.
- It’s not always easy finding that extra time to get to the gym. When I was personal training, clients who had the greatest success are those who could maintain a consistent schedule. Those with larger work or family demands often had to reschedule or cancel their training session due to another obligation taking priority or having to cut their session short.
- Monthly fees might include services that you aren't interested in using. Larger investment to join or lots of steps to go through to cancel.
- More equipment available to you.
- Gym hours.
- Limited number of class attendees.
- Can be done any time of the day or night that suits your schedule
- Can be expensive to build your own home gym depending on your goals and equipment needed
- Focusing 100% on your workout could be a challenge if there are distractions (email, family, pets)
- At-home workouts can be as simple as using your body weight, filling an old backpack with soup cans, or using gallon water jugs.
- And let's not forgot a simple walk around the block a few times is a great form of cardio and enjoying the fresh air + soaking in a little vitamin D.
With both options, you'll need to commit to the time block in your calendar and shift other tasks around to support your workout goals.
USING OBJECTS AT HOME
If setting up a complete home gym is out of the budget right now, don't fret! There are a lot of things you can use as weights. Choosing objects that vary in size and in weight are the best tools to use to get that toned physique you have been yearning for.
For example, canned goods and gallon water jugs, are great substitutes for weights. Another inexpensive idea is purchasing sandbags for fitness and playground sand. Or dust off an old backpack that has been collecting dust and load it with canned goods, books, or bricks from a yet to be completed home project to act as a weighted vest. Perfect for body weight exercises.
Your stairway is the original stair climber. A few times up and down those and you will get the same sweat as that never ending stair master at the gym.
Chairs are also a great tool to use for arm and leg training. You can use them in many different ways to sculpt those muscles. Arm dips and incline pushups are good examples of how to use a chair to workout.
For those who work from home: If you have the option to stand at your desk do so, wear sneakers and try to get in steps between calls or even take 5 minute breaks every 25 minutes to sneak in a mini workout.
Easy mini workout sets could be:
- 3 sets of 12 - 15 air squats
- Wall or floor push-up
- A pair of weights near by for bicep curls, shoulder press, or lat raises.
- See the chart below for more ideas to incorporate a HIIT style workout at home. You could set a time for 20 seconds on/10 seconds off and rotate through the chart.
Don't over think it and by the end of your workday, you'll be amazed at how many mini workouts you were able to sneak in.
Yoga is a very therapeutic workout that teaches you how to work on your breathing and channel your inner being. This type of exercise is typically a series of poses that you hold for an extended length of time and transitioning slowly into another, teaching your mind and body discipline.
There are many different types of yoga to choose from.
Hot yoga: where you can crank up the heat so that you sweat more to burn more calories.
Flow yoga: where the poses typically flow right into one another at a slightly faster pace.
Hatha yoga requires you to hold the poses for a few breaths before changing to another.
The benefit of doing yoga at home is that you can go at your own pace, and you can feel comfortable if you make a mistake.
Kickboxing + PILATES
Kickboxing is a group of stand-up combat sports based on kicking and punching, which is also used for self-defense. You use your arms to jab, punch, cross, and strike.
Kickboxing is also an excellent stress reliever, which is much needed during the Holiday season! It allows you to release built up frustration and express your emotions through your movements.
Pilates is a series of movements that stabilize and strengthen your core. These movements are usually done in a certain order, one right after the other.
This type of workout will boost your flexibility and improve your joint mobility. This workout is not a cardio workout, but it is intense, and you use your own body weight to make your muscles more defined and toned.
In today’s world, there are so many technological advances that even our fitness life has caught up. There are a wide range of ways to use your tech devices to get those feel-good workouts in at home.
They range anywhere from your TV all the way down to your cell phone. They even have exercise channels on your cable or satellite networks so that all you have to do is flip to that channel, see what’s on and start your workout. They have anything from Zumba type dancing workouts to intense workouts.
The marketplace has a huge range of DVD workouts. Almost every type of exercise you can imagine, there is a DVD for it. Some of the most popular ones are Jillian Michaels, Biggest Loser, and P90x.
All of these are effective if used correctly, but the wide range of choices allows you to have fun and pick what suits your needs best.
Making a list or a log of what exercises you have completed can help you figure out what works best for you and keep you on track.
Some people like to work on certain areas of their body one day and then concentrate on another area on another day. Others like to do a random series of exercises to keep their workout from being too repetitious.
Maintaining a log that says what exercises you did, or the exercises that you intend to do, will allow you more time to actually work out as opposed to just thinking about what exercises you would like to complete (and, maybe- procrastinating!).
Keeping fitness, meal, and goals journals will give you the motivation to reach them. Give yourself a reward after you have reached one of your goals. It doesn’t have to be anything big, but it reminds you that you can do it and that it feels good to accomplish.
It does not even have to be a big goal. An example could be “I want to work out every day this week”. That goal does not mean that it has to be an hour or two work out.
It could be as simple as going up and down the stairs ten times in a row and maybe two other exercises. Anything that gets your heart rate up and causes you to sweat a little bit is better than feeling guilty about doing nothing at all.