Tips for working out at home
The covid-19 pandemic has given us so many lessons. When lockdowns and quarantines were imposed across different countries globally, it became clear that we needed to be a bit creative to continue enjoying some of the activities we all loved. One of such activities is working out and staying fit.
Many people used to think that working out at home was a luxury reserved for a select few. One common assumption is that you need lots of cash to afford a home gym. But that's not the case. Yes, having a fat wallet would help, but it is not a necessity. There are lots of home workout plans that do not require any equipment at all. Most of us have relied on these plans to keep the "quarantine weight" at bay, and they have worked remarkably well.
I'm not going to lie and claim that working out at home is super easy, though. It does come with a lot of challenges. For one, it demands a lot of discipline. Remember, you are working out within the vicinity of your cozy couch, and all your favorite Netflix and HBO Max shows. It can be a real struggle.
On the brighter side, once you get over the challenges, you will really love the experience. I mean, you have the entire bathroom a few yards away, plus it is clean and smelling fresh; you'll never feel self-conscious about your weight or fitness as is the case in packed gyms; you pick your own playlist, and you don't have to worry about your valuables.
Therefore, working out at home can be effective and lots of fun, but only if you do it correctly. So here are a few tips to get you started:
Designate a workout space
Find a good space and make it your home gym. And you don't need lots of space for this. You can even start with limited space the size of a yoga mat. As a beginner, the essential thing at this point is finding the right space and not necessarily the biggest space. By right here, I mean a place with minimal distractions. Ideally, you shouldn't create this space in the same room with your TV. You also don't want to be too close to your fridge or bed. Basements and garages are perfect.
Having a yoga mat and some hand weights would help bring the mood in your workout space. They also increase your options in terms of the exercises you can undertake. However, you don’t have to worry about the equipment if your budget is not big enough. There are so many great workout plans that you can do with your body weight and other easily-available home equipment. For instance, you can use water bottles or soup cans instead of hand weights.
Set your goals and start small
You want to set out your short- and long-term goals before you even start your journey. This means checking your current fitness level and setting out the goals you want to achieve, and attaching a timeline to them.
Having small short-term goals is vital in keeping you motivated along the way, so do not ignore them. Focus on these small goals in your first few weeks to gain some form before you start targeting the long-term goals.
You will struggle a bit in the first few days, and that's fine. However, you want to try as much as possible to remain consistent. Let your body and brain get accustomed to the new routine, and it will all get so much easier before you know it.
Create a youtube library
There are so many amazing free workout videos online on youtube. Make a simple library or find your fitness guru on youtube!
Create a good support system
A support system keeps you accountable and makes the entire experience enjoyable. If you live with your partner or a roommate, try to get them on board with your plans. But don't let them derail you if they are not interested. You can find good fitness communities online. Some of them even share the same fitness goals as yours, so you can share some tips and tricks.
Wear your gym clothes
I’m working out in my own home so do I really need my gym clothes? Yes, you do! Dressing up for the exercises tunes your mind into it. It also helps you take the exercises more seriously. Therefore, make sure to put on your gym clothes and shoes.
Online Workout Programs
There are dozens of workout programs on the internet. You can get some of them for free on YouTube and other platforms, while some plans will require some form of subscription. Fitplan and GetFit have some outstanding workout programs. The Ton It Up app also has good home workout plans, some of which do not require any equipment at all. Do not sleep on these programs.
Hydration and Nutrition
Working out can only take you so far, but the only way to get better and faster results is through drastic changes in your lifestyles. This includes watching what you eat. Lockdowns have people eating more than is necessary. The worst part is people are eating anything and everything.
Try your best and avoid processed foods as much as possible. Limit the home deliveries of all the junk takeout and find a good and healthy diet to stick to. Drink lots of water and healthy smoothies and eat clean carbohydrates and proteins.
You can also promote your workouts with some healthy pre and post-workout snacks like some vegan protein powders.
Home Workout Plan
Here is a sample of a good home workout plan:
- Warm-up with 20-40 jumping jacks
- Hold a plank for 30 to 60 seconds.
- Do at least 10 pushups.
- Do at least 10 squats
There are some good non-equipment high-intensity interval training (HIIT) that will help you with your abs and booty. Here is a sample HIIT workout plan:
- Squat kickback
- Low plank twists
- Forward jump squats
- Inclined floor bridge
- Side to side plank
- Donkey kick + Push up
- Curtsy lunges
- Bicycle crunches
Each exercise should be done for about 30 seconds, followed by a 15-second break before performing the next exercise. The plan should be done for three rounds, but you can do it once or twice if you are not fit enough.
Burpees are also a great high-intensity interval training. You can start with it if the above plan looks a bit too intimidating.