Joining a gym isn’t for everyone. Whether it’s too expensive or you don’t feel comfortable working out in front of others, joining a gym is not the only way to stay fit and stick to your health goals.
Overeating during the holidays is a common problem for most people. Large meals with family can often mean high fat and carb content as well as alcohol. When extra calories add up during the winter, it’s not uncommon to skip outdoor activity. Luckily, there are several tips that can keep you on track for staying in optimal shape.
1.) Keep a Schedule
Planning is crucial to keeping on track. By setting realistic goals for the future, motivation and energy can be maintained throughout the weeks and months ahead. At the beginning of each year, it’s easy to make extreme exercise and weight loss a goal. Working out several times a week or twice a day may not be realistic for some people. If you’re not used to working out, planning a several mile hike in the mountains may deter more than motivate you.
When first starting out, try to plan a low-impact, but frequent exercise plan. If you choose to start off walking for twenty minutes five days a week, it may not feel like you’re doing much, but it will get you in the habit of exercising. When you decide to push yourself further, the regimen will be easier and therefore more likely to be accomplished.
2.) Work Out at Home
Work outs do not have to be in a studio or gym. Some work outs do not even require any equipment at all. By filling two 8 or 16oz water bottles, you have successfully created resistance dumb bells. Many yoga poses can be done with or without hand weights to strengthen upper arms and provide definition. If you dislike doing yoga videos, there are several books that can show you each posture. Jumping rope is another excellent at-home exercise. Unlike yoga which requires some room to spread out, jumping rope can be done in any apartment. This can build arm strength while simultaneously doing a cardio work out.
3.) Walk to Work
Depending on where you live, walking to work can be extremely beneficial. A twenty minute walk to work can boost your heart rate and help fight off depression. Even during the winter, simply being outside can help with energy levels. After walking home from work, you will have successfully finished 40 minutes of walking. This is twice the amount recommended to stay healthy even though the time is split up. By walking twenty minutes in the morning and twenty in the evening, exercise is not too difficult and still provides the benefit of a 40 minute work out, all without joining a gym.
4.) Think Outside the Box
Almost anything can be turned into an exercise. Basic kitchen chairs can be used for squats. Walking up a flight of stairs just a few times a day can prove beneficial for the knees and lungs. To strengthen your abs, try holding a small weight like a few books or a vase with water and hold it just below your chest. Without moving your hips, twist the left side of your body and then the right while keeping the weight in direct proportion with the space just below your chest. By moving slowly, your core can get a great work out without any expensive equipment or weights.
5.) Find Time to Clean
Cleaning is one of the easiest ways to kill two birds with one stone. By simply cleaning your apartment, you can work out a variety of different body parts while simultaneously making your living space beautiful. Dusting in hard to reach corners, lifting small pieces of furniture and washing windows or floors can stretch the body in ways you hadn’t thought of. This is also a good way to lose yourself during a work out. By putting on some music and focusing on the task at hand, time can go by much more quickly than if you were just watching the clock at a gym.
6.) Try Dancing
If you don’t want to dance around your home to the radio, try looking up dance classes online. Whether you’re interested in Latin dancing or hip hop, the rhythm of the music can help you both build muscle and lose weight. Since posture and balance are also important when dancing, this can help your overall appearance in addition to physical health.
7.) Grab Some Friends
Sometimes the best motivation is friendship. Walking with someone or having a dance partner can help you stick to your goals. By exercising together, you may hold yourself to a higher level of responsibility. In addition to having fun with friends, exercising with others can reinforce healthy, long-lasting habits.
There are multiple ways to work out without joining a gym. Whether you enjoy watching the clock and counting individual exercises or whether you prefer dancing to music, fitness can fit almost any lifestyle. To create a long-lasting exercise regimen, it’s best to start off doing what you enjoy for a consistent period of time. When habits become a routine, health can become a lifestyle.