Wow. What a crazy time we are living in right now. I would be lying to you if I said that what is happening isn’t filling my mind up with anxiety but I am doing my best to meditate and exercise, two things which I know help me tremendously when I start to worry. Unfortunately, it is going to be tough to get out to our regular workouts for the next while due to either studios shutting down, our own practice of social distancing, taking care of our kids while schools are closed or having to self-isolate.
This doesn’t mean you have to stop taking care of yourself, both your physical and mental health, and I want to offer you solutions on how you can stay healthy. (Note: I am not a doctor, and this is simply advice on how to exercise at home or indoors.)
If you have children who are now on spring break, they will need to stay active too so here are some suggestions on keeping your entire family moving. Take your kids outside and play. I have a young niece and nephew who exhaust me every time I visit. From riding bikes with them, to playing tag, to having running races we are always moving. Put the screens away and get outside and play with your kids. A 5-minute game of tag followed by some bike riding and hopscotch is as good as any workout in my mind. If you live near walking or hiking trails, use them. Outside isn’t closed. However, if you are opting to stay indoors there are lots of fun ideas to do together as a family. Have a dance party where you turn on some of your favourite songs, download an old 80s workout video and do it together as a family, or have a daily plank-off and see which member of your family can hold their planks the longest.
If you are someone who craves your morning, lunchtime, or after work classes, be yoga, Pilates, strength or spin, there are so many options for you to get that same high energy class workout inside your home. Spinning may be tough (unless you have a bike at home) but there are so many accessible resources available that won’t cost you a thing. If you are looking for your morning yoga workouts, try Yoga With Adriene. I know our site manager Emily is a very big fan of hers, as am I. Here is a link to a video you can even do with your kids.
If it is a bootcamp workout or strength workout you want, try The Nike Training Club. This app offers free workouts ranging from 15 minutes upwards to 45 minutes. I love to get through a quick 15-minute bodyweight circuit after my runs, but they are also great on their own. And for the moms and dads out there, this is a great option for you. After a serious play session with your kids, do a quick workout while your kids sit down for a snack.
If it is Pilates you are after, Pilates Anytime is my favourite. I use this app almost daily for my own Pilates workout. The platform is a paid subscription but luckily, they do offer a 2-week free trial which you can take advantage of. There are hundreds of brilliant teachers who lead incredible mat Pilates workouts that are easy to follow and require zero equipment. Your core will thank you.
(Please note: I am not benefitting from recommending any of these resources. They are just my favourite workout tools that I want to share with you.)
If you just want me to tell you what to do then you’ve got that option also. Here is a very easy to follow at home workout that you can literally do barefoot in your underwear (which honestly is my favourite way to workout at home). Turn on some of your favourite music, set a timer, and follow this workout step by step.
Start by simply moving your body. Walking or jogging on the spot is a great option, or anything that is lower impact and will get your body moving - 60 seconds.
Bear crawls is where I always like to go to next. This movement warms up your legs and arms and gets the heart rate up and your body ready for some more intense movements - 60 seconds.
After this I like to do another core/cardio move to get my heartrate up even higher and set the mood for the rest of the workout. Slow mountain climbers to fast mountain climbers is my go-to. Alternate between 10 seconds slow, 10 seconds fast for 60 seconds.
Then I pick 5 exercises, which I do for 60 seconds one after the other, followed by a core exercise, a cardio exercise and a 1-minute rest. That equals 8 minutes, or 24 minutes when completed 3 times.
Finish with 1 minute of smaller muscle group training (glutes or abs) and then a quick stretch. That is my recipe for at home workouts and here are a few examples of what I create with my recipe. These videos are recorded in my home (which is a small studio that I share with my partner) using minimal space and zero equipment.
5 exercise circuit Number 1
Alternating forward and back lunges (30 seconds each leg)
Quadruped Arm and Leg raises
Push ups (from your knees or toes)
Plank with knee to elbow touches (either same elbow to knee or opposite elbow to knee)
Side shuffles with ground touch
Go through this once, take a 1-minute rest and then repeat
5 exercise circuit Number 2
Reverse lunge with a goalpost twist
Plank with arm reach, leg lift or both (lifting opposite arm and leg at the same time)
Superman (upper body only)
Leg Pull Ups with triceps dips
Squat with 3 second pulse at the bottom
Abdominal curls with hold at the top with toe taps
Side Skate Jumps
You can make these types of workouts up on your own as there really is no wrong way to move. If it feels good in your body and gets your heartrate up, then do it. Try to find movements that will work your entire body. Planks, side planks, walking lunges, wall sits, burpees, pushups, triceps dips, jumping lunges, sit ups are all good options. Later this week I will post workouts, following the same recipe, but with the use of equipment. All you need is a weight and an exercise band.
Please don’t forget how important you are, how important your health is, so take this time to care for you.