Making excuses about your workout burns zero calories per hour – and helps you make zero progress towards your fitness goals. I know life gets busy, but I truly believe that, with the right prioritization and the right bank of workout ideas for at-home workouts, no one is too busy for their body. Our body is our vehicle for life: we only get one and we need to take care of it like it’s one of the most precious things we have.
WHAT TO DO WHEN YOU CAN’T GET TO THE GYM:
You don’t have to go to the gym to get a workout. In fact, sometimes, the days that we simply can’t make it to the gym end up being some of our best workout days. In my case today, I am snowed in the house with a record-setting 35 inches of snow. While the major highways in our area have been plowed, the local roads and neighborhoods haven’t been touched, making getting to the gym, or getting outside for a run impossible. Added to my challenge is my 11-month old daughter, who, while diligently takes great naps, needs constant play and attention (ahem, monitoring so she doesn’t lick electric outlets or eat garbage from the trash can). I didn’t want to “waste” a nap on a workout, as I had a mountain of household chores and writing to get done for the 90-minutes that the house would be silently graced by a nap, so my at-home workout includes the distraction of a tiny human being.
Having to squeeze in my exercises around Ellie in her playroom (our basement), actually gave me the motivation to rev up my workout and to make it high-intensity with a lot of added plyometrics to get my heart rate rocking. Since I didn’t know how long she would play nicely – and allow me to workout without needing my full attention – I knew that what I did needed to be focused and intense. During the workout, every now and then, Ellie wanted to be held, which simply signaled me to switch up exercises to one that I could do while holding her for extra weight and resistance (i.e.. walking lunges, deep squats or over-the-head baby lifts / shoulder presses).
HOW MUCH EQUIPMENT DO YOU NEED FOR AN AT-HOME WORKOUT?
The truth is that you don’t need any. Your body is equipment enough to get a good cardiovascular and strength training workout in (think burpees, jogging in place, squats and push-ups), however, for variety and more fun, it’s always good to have a small supply of fitness toys at your disposal.
Here’s what I keep in my basement for impromptu, at-home workouts (all of these products come highly recommended … I choose very few items as necessities, and these make the list – make sure you click on the words/links to see what the products looks like and to purchase your own):
[The TRX is my go-to total-body trainer and is a tool so small and portable that I take it on the road with me when I’m not sure if where I’m going will have a gym. Highly recommended!]
[I can’t live without my foam roller and use this bad boy daily … it gets the knots out of my legs and, as a result, keeps my joints and muscles loose and mobile, able to take on every demand I put on my body. The foam roller helps me recovery quickly, feel less sore, be more flexible and be able to keep up my running schedule without injury.]
Dumbbells (20lbs + 35lbs)
[These are self-explanatory – and I use these when I don’t have access to my TRX for strength and resistance training. You can literally do hundreds of exercises with dumbbells, so select a set of two varying weights and you will be able to incorporate a ton of variety into your at-home workouts and will prevent boredom.]
[The ActivMotion Bar is a new tool I’ve recently acquired and it’s awesome. It engages 173% more core activation than other core and isolation tools and I use this bad boy for ab work, stabilization work and muscle isolation. Plus, it’s fun to use and forces me to be aware of my body so I keep the internal balance balls even and stabilized. Parenting bonus —> Ellie thinks the sound the bar makes is funny, so this elicits lots of giggles during a family workout in the basement.]
[Again, self-explanatory, it’s just always nice to have a set spot to perform exercises and to keep your carpet from getting sweaty as you get your sweat on!]
Typically, I hang my TRX outside, however, with 35 inches of snow, that wasn’t an ideal option for me for this particular workout.
So, being snowed-in and on full-time baby duty, what did I end up doing this morning? Here’s my workout – use some of the simple ideas to inspire your own next at-home sweat-fest!
100x jumping jacks
50x squat jumps
100x leg lowers
5 minutes of plank holds
3×10 jumping lunges
3×30 second Front Raise Isometric Holds with ActivMotion Bar
3×12 walking lunges (holding Ellie)
25x single leg squats
3×15 bicep curls
3×12 triceps kick backs
3 minutes of Russian Twists with ActivMotion Bar
3×15 upright rows
50x seal jacks
75x butt kicks or step jumps
50x v-ups with ActivMotion Bar
2 Minutes Jumping Ice Skaters
3×10 bent over single arm dumbbell row
The bottom line is that your body deserves to move every day. Think about it, even if you just intentionally walk around your house – getting in 10,000-11,000 steps – your body will have walked a total of approximately 5 miles. If you have 24-hours in a day, your body deserves at least 1…even if that one hour is a combination of walking, stretching, and yoga in addition to a traditional “workout”, time put into your body is time put into your body. Like anything else in life, what you put in is what you will get out. Put kindness, love, honor, and work into your physical health and you will reap energy, confidence, fitness and enthusiasm…and a body that lasts and serves you well as your vehicle for life!
Get your workout in today – no excuses!