Motivation? Check. Gym clothes? Check. Time for gym? Sorry but no. It is hard – you either have to work late, or you have your kids to take care of, or the nearest gym is just too far away. Maybe you find gym membership too expensive. Whatever the reason is, know that when there’s a will, there’s a way. In this case the way is working out at home.
Now you’re thinking: But can I really get a great workout without all that gym machines? The answer is absolutely yes. Here is how to do so.
The five elements of fitness
An effective home fitness program has five elements:
- A warmup
- Aerobic workout
- Resistance exercises
- Flexibility moves
- Cooling down
Warm up is something easy such as walking for a few minutes (outside or on a treadmill) or even a slow pace on a stationary bicycle.
For an aerobic workout, aka cardiovascular workout, walk a little bit faster, watch and follow an aerobic video or jump a rope – whatever suits you and makes tour heart rate higher.
Resistance part is doing simple exercises such as push-ups, squats and abdominal crunches, or even some workouts that require small dumbbells (if you have them of course). This can be done in the same workout as your aerobic workout or you can keep them split up. If you are short on time, opt for a harder workout program but with a shorter time interval.
Next, increase your flexibility a little bit by doing some floor stretching or yoga poses. Finally, cool yourself down with something similar to your warmup, so you bring your heart rate to a resting state.
If you are just beginning your fitness journey, aim for no longer than 30 minutes of cardio exercises at least 3 times a week, and between 20 and 30 minutes of strength workouts for three times a week. Make sure that you are covering all muscle groups and do approximately three sets of 12 to 15 repetitions of each exercise.
Start slowly and gradually increase intensity and time later. Focus on your muscles while working them, you have to feel the impact of every single repetition.
How to stay motivated
While working out at home has some really good sides such as saving time and money, it also has some disadvantages. First of all, you can easily get distracted, whether it is your phone, your pet, your child, the fridge etc. Basically it is easy to find something more important to be done than working out because all that is literally in your face (dirty dishes, plants that need water etc.). A good way to avoid all that distractions and stay motivated is to exercise as early in the day as possible. Not only you will stick to your exercise more, but your body will also gain a lot more since morning workout is the most effective workout.
Tips for home exercisers
If you easily get bored – challenge yourself. Surf the internet and find some easy workouts for home environment, but make sure you do them properly. Use pictures and videos as a guide.
Find an exercise partner such as family member or a friend to keep you away from finding excuses. If none of your friends and family want to work out, hire a personal trainer from a mobile personal training company such as Gym To You that can come to your home and make sure you do everything properly.
Have a plan and schedule your workouts. One month in advance write down your exercise appointments for the next month and stick to the plan. Track your progress with a journal by measuring the girth of your chest, neck, hips, arms, bottom and legs and repeat the measuring once in a month.
Set goals that are currently within your reach and while you are getting close to achieving them give yourself some mini prizes such as new workout clothes, new pair of sneakers etc.
Finally, make exercising your routine just like sleeping and eating is. You will now experience a life change to which you will need to adjust.