Hey Hayley,

Can you give me a basic workout I can do at home? I walk or run outside regularly but a gym membership isn't really in my budget at the moment, and my free time is fairly limited, so I'd love a simple routine I can do at home in the mornings. I like doing lunges and push-ups but I want to make sure I'm not just working the same muscles over and over, and that I'm doing enough repetitions to really get something out of the movements.


I had a conversation with a friend of mine today about this, as she asked how much I would charge to design a workout plan for her. I told her that that part of my job is almost obsolete now. One of the most common complaints I hear from clients about exercise is that it is boring and they don’t like doing the same thing over and over again. And, unless you are training for a specific sport or event or you have a unique issue or injury that needs to be addressed, there is no need to do the same workout day in day out. Most of us want fun and variety in our weekly workout regimen. Combine that with the readily available workouts you can find on YouTube, social media and in the apps store of your smart phone, the need for me to sit down and design a specific workout is rare.

There are lots of home workout programs you can buy, but there really is no need to these days to spend money on something with the plethora of free workout applications available. I have tried a few, but my favourite has to be the Nike Training Club (NTC) app. You can download it right to your phone or tablet and after spending a bit of time setting up your profile you have your program ready to go, with endless combinations of exercises.

The application guides you as you create a program that is right for you, helping you decide whether you want to get lean, toned or strong. Once you have decided your goal, as well as your current fitness level (beginner, intermediate or advanced), it creates your program and organizes your workouts and exercises to ensure you are training your entire body efficiently and evenly. Each exercise comes with a description on how to do it properly as well as photos and videos, which helps ensure that you will not get injured. 

If you are in a squeeze one day, you can select a workout from the Get Focused menu, which allows you to do a quick 15 minute blast or add 2 or 3 together for something a bit longer. The program also allows you to add in your weekly runs and keeps track of everything that you do, which will hold you accountable. 

The workouts require limited equipment, which is great if you are on a budget. All you will need is a medicine ball, a mat and a set of dumbbells, all of which can be purchased for less than $100.

One problem with home workouts is that there are a million excuses and things to do around the house that will keep you from actually getting your workout accomplished. That is one benefit of paying to go somewhere or committing to a program, as you will be less likely to miss the workout. If exercising at home is your only option, then you need to set up a schedule and stick to it. If you do not make time to get it done and make it a priority, then chances are you won’t be as successful as you had hoped.