Looking back on 2017, I have the most regret for not keeping a consistent exercise routine. Now while I didn’t keep up my exercise routine throughout the entire year, there were periods where I kept up a consistent workout schedule. One of the best things to help with the consistent workouts was my ability to work out at home. If exercising at home is more your speed, here are five tips to have a successful home workout.
- Make your workout a priority. Finding the time to workout is a major struggle. Between work, kids, laundry, and my TV time, it’s hard to find time for exercise. However, the first step is to set your intention. For me, exercise isn’t about weight loss (although that helps!). Rather, exercise provides a natural pick me up that improves my mood and increases my energy. So knowing how I’ll feel after working out causes me to make sure I fit exercise into my schedule. Speaking of schedules, set your workouts as an appointment in your schedule. The same way you make it a priority to make a hair appointment, get your car serviced, or get to work on time, set a time to exercise. The benefit of working out at home is you can make it convenient for yourself. For me, exercising in the evenings when the kids were sleeping worked best. In 2018 I plan to continue working out at night. A yoga routine right before bedtime is SO relaxing! If you’re an early riser, get your workout done first thing in the morning. No need to get in the car or worry about public showers. Just get dressed and go.
- Set a designated home workout area/space. The great thing about exercising at home is you don’t have to go far for your calorie burn. Whether it’s your living room, bedroom, or basement, set a designated area to complete your workouts. Keep your equipment (i.e. shoes, mat, towel, etc.) in one spot so you don’t have to go searching for it each time. Move the coffee table and get started! Feel free to make space your own too. Hang an inspirational quote or picture in your workout space. My husband and I are currently re-doing our basement playroom to include an exercise space.
- Use what you have. In this day and age, you can get a good workout without lots of equipment. Do you have a smartphone or access to the internet? Then you’re all set! You have lots of options for apps, YouTube videos, even Pinterest. You can literally live stream your workouts and turn your home into your own personal exercise studio. The best thing of all is most of these options are free. When first starting out, I did a series of reps of ab crunches, pushups, burpees, squats, and jumping jacks. Now, I do suggest two items to get started – a good pair of shoes and a heart rate monitor. You’ll want to make sure your shoes provide the proper support to help prevent injury. A heart rate monitor helps you keep tab of your heart rate and lets you know when you are in your fat burning zone. You’ll be able to know when you need to turn up or tone down your intensity. Over the years, I’ve accumulated a set of free weights, a yoga mat, resistance bands, and DVDs. Thanks to my husband, our exercise area also has a pull-up bar and a punching bag. If you don’t have any of this stuff, don’t sweat it. You’re at home, so pick up a couple of cans of soup as dumbbells and get to lifting.
- Do what you love. One of the best ways to maintain an exercise routine is to make it fun. If you make your routines enjoyable, you’re more likely to stick with it. For a while, I was really into Zumba. During my last pregnancy, yoga really resonated with me. Yoga is my safe haven to relax and bring focus to my mind and body. I plan to re-introduce myself to yoga on a consistent basis. If yoga is not your thing, experiment with high-intensity workouts and/or calisthenics. Remember to switch it up too. A mix between high and low-intensity workouts, cardio and strength training is beneficial to have a well-rounded exercise regime.
- Set realistic expectations. What are your fitness goals? Losing a certain number of pounds or losing a certain percentage of body fat? Set a one month or quarterly goal to give yourself time to make progress. If you are trying to lose 50 pounds it may not be realistic to try and lose that weight in a month. However, you may want to set a goal to lose 1-2 pounds a week. Or maybe you haven’t exercised in a while and you want to get started. Start small – commit to 20-minute sessions three days a week. Remember you can always seek the help of a health professional for advice and recommendations (it’s a good idea to see your primary care physician first to set a baseline). Figure out what time and type of workouts work best for you. From, there you can increase your frequency and/or duration. My goal is to drop 20 pounds or as I like to call it, Operation Gut Be Gone!
Maintaining a regular exercise routine can be a challenge. However, you don’t have to go to a gym to get in a good calorie burn. These tips helped me keep a consistent exercise regime, and I plan to use these tips into 2018. Keeping the workouts at home helped me keep exercise at the forefront to turn exercising into a habit. And I need a habit that keeps me active. Besides how else will I keep up with the little ones if I don’t keep a regular exercise routine? LOL!