Exercise can be a great release. Not only does it provide a healthy and positive way to relieve stress, but it also improves physical and mental health. But like many other aspects of our daily lives, the COVID-19 pandemic has reduced our physical activity. There have been shutdowns, re-openings under strict guidelines, and shutting down again after having reopened.
Getting or staying fit can be challenging, especially with many fitness centers finding themselves forced into temporary or permanent closure. Thankfully, you don’t need a gym or fancy equipment in order to exercise or get in shape. Here are a few convenient at-home workouts that require little to no equipment.
Push-ups use your own body weight as resistance, and are a great way to build arm and chest strength.
When performing a push-up, make sure to keep your hands wider than your shoulders, and keep your elbows at a 90 degree angle at the bottom of the movement.
To start, you can perform 1 warm up set of 5 pushups.
After your warm up set, you should increase the number of repetitions per set. (Below is a recommendation.) Be careful to keep the same movement and form as the warm up set.
Bonus: For added resistance, fill a backpack up with canned food or books to add some extra weight.
Dips are a great way to build your triceps, chest, and shoulders. Find an object in your house that is about knee high and can support your weight: a couch or a loveseat usually will be good! If it is not heavy enough to not move during movement, you can place it against a wall.
Start by facing away from the furniture you are using, extend your legs so they are straight in front of you, positioning your hands wider than your shoulders on the surface of the object, supporting your weight with your hands.
Beginning with your arms fully extended, lower yourself to about one inch above the floor, and push yourself back up with your hands.
Bonus: To add some extra resistance, balance a heavy textbook or a heavy object you can lay in your lap while doing the movement.
Body weight squats
Put your hands on your hips or extend them out in front of you, depending on which helps you balance. Bend your knees until your thighs are angled to just below parallel, then stand back up.
*Depending on strength
Bonus: For extra resistance, wear a backpack filled with books, canned food, or similar heavy objects.
Cardio is considered an important component to maintaining cardiovascular health, and is an important component to a balanced workout plan. Just doing 20-30 minutes of cardio activity a day could drastically improve your general health. Here are a few different cardio routines you can easily do around the house.
Running/Jogging in place
If you don’t have a treadmill, jog or run in place at a steady pace for 20–30 minutes. Increase or decrease your intensity depending on your experience level.
If you live in a home with a flight of stairs, this is a great steady-state form of cardio that is sure to get your heart beating!
Walk, jog, or run up and down the stairs at a steady pace for 20–30 minutes. If jogging or running, be careful. That’s it!
This is both a cardio and a resistance activity that can count as an entire workout! For those unfamiliar with burpees, they are a combination of a pushup, a squat, and a jumping jack.
Start in a squat stance, and drop down to a push up position. Then spring up from that position, and jump up in one fluid motion. If you need a bit of guidance, the video above shows the proper form for this exercise. Perform burpees at the fastest pace you are able to.
Now get moving and conquer your at home workout!
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