If your gym has been closed for months on end or you are just starting a new journey to being fitter, healthier and happier, there are a variety of ways you can start getting some exercise at home to increase your energy, boost your mood and feel better. All it takes is a little motivation, discipline and commitment to a program that can help you tremendously in the long run. When you improve your physical health, you’ll also notice some positive changes with your mental health – and who couldn’t use that these days?
And if you feel like you need to shed the excess weight, there is no time like the present. Approximately half of American adults attempt to lose weight each year. There are a variety of approaches for doing this successfully, such as restructuring your eating habits and finding ways to be more active. Aside from changing diet habits, exercise is one of the best ways to ignite your body to burn more calories and shed some extra pounds. Not to mention, when you exercise, you not only feel better but you’re staving off chronic diseases and debilitating health problems you could potentially face in the future. So, get off the couch and get moving!
Walking has long been hailed one of the best workouts for weight loss because it’s easy, doesn’t require any equipment (other than a good pair of shoes and something comfortable to wear) and for beginners, it isn’t overwhelming.
According to Harvard Health, it’s estimated that a 155-pound (70-kg) person burns around 167 calories per 30 minutes of walking at a moderate pace of 4 mph (6.4 km/h). It may not seem like a lot at first, but when you implement this exercise into your everyday activity, the calories begin to build up and you’ll notice a significant change in your physique. Plus, you’ll get a little fresh air and get out of the house for a bit.
It’s easy enough to get started, just aim to walk for 30 minutes 3–4 times per week. You can gradually increase the duration or frequency of your walks as your body adapts. You can also take your favorite four-legger, put some headphones on, or just bask in the nature around you.
Many people will have a walking partner, which can be motivating and critical for relationships. It’s also found that if you are committed to walking with a partner, you will be more accountable and more likely to stay disciplined so you are doing it each day. It can be a quite enjoyable exercise and you may begin to look forward to your strolls! In the event you have access to a treadmill, you can also watch one of your favorite programs or just enjoy being at home while burning calories. Perhaps you have young children, or need to be at home for a duration, a treadmill is a great way to fire up your energy and whittle down your waistline.
Yoga has been around for more than 5,000 years – and for good reason. Yoga workouts can be extremely simple and easy to learn, or the workouts can be more intense for the seasoned athlete. Either way, it’s not only helping you burn calories, but the benefits are tremendous. You’ll experience increased flexibility, and increased muscle strength and tone, improved respiration and energy, a better metabolism and – weight loss! What’s not to love?
Many yoga enthusiasts do it not just for the physical benefits, but there are also the myriad mental benefits that come as well, such as clarity, decreased depression, anxiety reduction, reduced stress and better sleep. It’s a win-win situation, if you decide that this is the workout regimen for you.
There are a variety of ways to start doing yoga, whether you want to learn from a book, online or stream a yoga workout from your smart TV, computer or mobile phone. It also doesn’t require much space. You can do yoga from the comfort of your living room, backyard or anywhere else you desire. The key to being successful at yoga is to do it routinely if you want to lose weight. The building blocks of yoga are poses you will learn and repeat.
Some are done standing, but some are done on the floor so it’s a good idea to invest in a yoga mat so you are comfortable. Learning some breathing techniques is also critical to your yoga practice. In fact, many professional sports teams implement yoga into an athlete’s work out to help them breathe better and increase their focus. There is a reason it has been so wildly popular for such a long time – if you want to get into better shape, it works! And you don’t have to suffer, huffing and puffing as you would if you were running or doing aerobics. While it is an anaerobic activity, you will still sweat and move your body in dynamic and challenging ways.
3. High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) Workouts
HIIT workouts have become increasingly popular over the years because it is one of the best ways to burn calories and see results quickly. It’s also popular because it requires the least amount of time for the biggest impact. The workouts typically consist of short bursts of intense exercise combined with periods of rest or lower-intensity movements. It’s a way to charge your cardiovascular system and boost your heart rate to approximately 80 percent of its maximum capacity. The routines can differ vastly, so it provides a lot of variety if you’re incorporating this into a daily routine (i.e. you won’t get bored).
To start, there is a lot of research online, or books that can help you start a workout. You’ll want to divide the minutes you work out into “work” and “rest” periods. For example, if you’re a beginner, you might start with 30 seconds of work, followed by 30 seconds of rest. If you’re more advanced, you might do 45 seconds of work and 15 seconds of rest.
You just want to make sure your work periods are at your maximum energy level to burn the most calories because while you are resting your body is still burning. You can find a lot of these workouts on YouTube, or there are a variety of apps for your phone that can provide you with a routine. Just be sure to have plenty of water and some comfortable shoes!
If you have a bike, this can be another extremely effective way of losing weight on your schedule. Not only is cycling great for weight loss, but studies have found that people who cycle regularly have better overall fitness, increased insulin sensitivity, and a lower risk of heart disease, cancer, and death, compared with those who don’t cycle regularly. If you have a stationary bike, you can also do this indoors effectively, but you might prefer the scenery outdoors better.
Just with any exercise, you’ll have to commit to a schedule if you really want to achieve results. Cycling can be better for those who have knee or back issues, due to limited impact with the ground. It’s still good to find a comfortable and supportive pair of shoes and clothes you can easily move in.
To begin, you need to set up your cycle or bike correctly. If you stand next to an upright bike, the seat should be level with the top of your hips. When seated, you should have a slight bend in the knees at the bottom of the pedal stroke. Next, adjust the seat, handles, and pedals to match your height and reach. You’ll want to warm up at a comfortable pace while keeping your resistance low. Then increase your resistance gradually, working harder than your warm-up pace. Your legs may tire quickly if you aren’t used to cycling, but with consistent activity your legs will build endurance.
To achieve noticeable weight loss, you’ll want to cycle for a minimum of 30 minutes per day, but your time length can vary according to your fitness level and health condition.
Despite being under quarantine, it’s helpful to know that there are still options to stay healthy and lose weight. Whatever type of workout you go with, just ensure you stick to it! The best recipe for success is commitment and consistency. Also, it’s important to follow a healthy diet plan which a nutritionist or doctor can also help you with. Luckily, telemedicine appointments are incredibly convenient so you can get some great advice without going to the doctor’s office.
If you have any injuries or conditions, it’s also best to check with your doctor before you begin any type of fitness routine. Your safety is important! But if you are reading this article, you are already headed in the right direction toward improving your health. And if you need to lose a little weight, these are some great, convenient options that you can partake in on your own schedule or fit in according to your lifestyle.