You’ll find that even the most dedicated fitness fanatic isn’t always able to make it to the gym. More than ever, regular gym-goers are finding that they’re struggling to get access to the gyms that they usually use. Rather than missing out on their planned workouts, home workouts are becoming the obvious solution.
As always, any workout is better than the one you miss, but that doesn’t give you an excuse to work at less than 100% just because you’re at home. Don’t assume that home workouts are about maintaining the status quo either. It’s just as possible to work at home on progressive workouts that will lead to real gains.
If you’re wondering how to make your at-home workouts as effective as your all-out gym sessions, check out these five levelling up tips that might make you never want to step foot in a gym again!
1. Workout at the Right Time
The time of day that you work out has always been important. That doesn’t mean that you have to work out in the morning, or that afternoon exercises are better for you. The fact is that there are benefits to morning workouts, just as there are (different) benefits to a bout of afternoon or evening exercise.
To level up your home workouts, choose the times of day that are most convenient for you. If you’re used to morning exercise routines that help you burn fat and lose weight, then stick to that. You’ll need to remember that breakfast and fat loss can be a complicated subject!
If you prefer to get your workouts done after work or during your lunch break, then there’s nothing wrong with that either. The aim should be consistency. Choose the times of day that most suit you, and try to stick as closely to them as you can. If you need to work out at different times every day, then it won’t do you any harm — it just might make it more challenging to motivate yourself.
2. Use Your Favourite Devices
From phone apps that can provide you with new exercise plans to smart tech that can monitor your heart rate, your devices can be an essential bit of kit for your home workout. Even your phone, which you may use at the gym for music or for watching videos while on the exercise bike, comes with a range of helpful options for home workout use.
If you have one of the many smart speakers available, then that’s a great addition to your home workout space. You don’t just have to use it to pump out your motivational playlist on Spotify. If you find your imagination flagging after a week of working out at home, ask Alexa or Siri for a bespoke exercise routine. These can be as long or as short as you need.
It’s easy to forget how much the tech we already own can aid our exercising routines. Use them well and you might barely even notice that you’re getting a brilliant workout.
3. Always Warm Up
It shouldn’t need saying, but too many people injure themselves with home workouts because they don’t bother with the warmup. Warming up in the gym becomes something like second nature, but in the comfort of your home, the temptation is simply to just crack on with the workout.
If you miss the warmup, you’re going to make it much more likely that you injure yourself. A pulled muscle or tendon is then going to reduce your ability to exercise the next day. In some cases, a pulled tendon can stop you from working out properly for over a month.
So even when you’re working out at home, it’s essential you do your warmup. Do some stretches before you start getting down to your workout. Get loose, and then follow up your warmup with some low-intensity but dynamic exercises such as lunges, knee hugs or slowly lifting weights.
4. Schedule Your Workout Time
When you have little choice but to work out at home, the fact you can do it at any time that’s convenient means it’s easy to keep putting off. That’s why it’s always a good idea to schedule specific days and times where you can focus on your exercise.
When you have your workout added to your calendar, you will be far more likely to get to it. Just as you wouldn’t miss an appointment with your dentist because it’s an official obligation, a scheduled workout session is much more difficult to ignore or put off until later.
Of course, life gets in the way of even the most organised people, so don’t feel bad if even a scheduled workout session has to be skipped because of work or other responsibilities. Don’t forget that you’re working out at home, so you really can get to it whenever you have spare time.
5. Get the Kids Involved
For parents that want to exercise at home, it’s always a good idea to get the kids involved. Workouts don’t have to mean lifting weights or doing push-ups for an hour. Instead, head to the garden and play tag, or go for a bike ride with the children as part of your warmup.
From a game of football in the garden (great for cardio) to a session at your local pool or even a game of Just Dance on your family games console, this is more than just a way to get yourself moving. It’s also great for bonding time — and it’s good for your kids too.
Start Working Out at Home Today
Whether you don’t have the time to get to the gym or you simply can’t get access to it when you need it, home workouts are the solution. You might have to be smart about the kinds of exercise that you do, and you won’t have access to all of the expensive gym equipment, but there’s plenty that you can be doing.
If you’re worried about slipping out of the exercise habit when your gym is closed, or it’s been a while since you could get there, look closer at your home exercise options. There are plenty of home workout guides available online that can help you design the perfect home workout.