Now the lockdown is in effect, we can only go out once a day to exercise, but there will be times when you won’t get to leave your house to get fresh air or you may be self-isolating, so that’s when fitness at home comes into its own.
If the last fitness at home workout you did involved The Green Goddess or Jane Fonda, then you’re seriously behind the curve!
First up, thanks to technology, no-one uses a DVD anymore. There are apps, live streams, virtual classes – in fact, there’s so much choice, you’ll wonder why you ever joined a gym!
However, trying fitness at home for the first time, can be a minefield – do you need equipment? How do I know if I’m doing it right? How do I get motivated?
Hannah Verdier, a PT who dubs herself ‘your friendly personal trainer for gym haters’, believes fitness if for everyone. She’s especially keen to ensure people know its fitness for the mind, as well as the body, something we all need in these uncertain times. Here are her top tips
1. Use what you have
Hannah says there’s no need for splashing out on expensive equipment.
“You don’t need any equipment to work out at home – there’s loads you can do with your bodyweight,” she says. “If you still want to build muscle, use this time to perfect your press-ups.”
There’s always equipment you can find around your house as well.
“A pair of tights or a cut-up old swimming cap can double as a resistance band. You can use them around your ankles when you’re doing sit-ups or to add resistance to your donkey kicks (all fours, kick one leg out),” Hannah says.
She also suggests using bottles of wine (if you have any that you’ve not drunk) two litres of water or bags of flour as dumbbells.
2. Make it easy for yourself
Despite her job, Hannah herself says she often finds it difficult to get motivated to work out at home. If you’re used to the motivation that you get from attending a gym class, it’s important to get into a routine. Mark out the times when you will be working out – just like you would if you were going to a class or the gym.
“The best tip I heard was to leave your workout clothes in front of the toilet, so you have to step over them when you go for a wee!” reveals Hannah. “Put them on first thing, then you’ve set your intention to exercise at some point.”
3. Make a playlist
If you need an extra boost to get going, music is your friend.
“Music is a massive motivator,” says Hannah. “I know it sounds obvious, but picking half an hour of your favourite uplifting songs really does get you through. I’ve put some playlists on my website to get you started”
4. Take it online
If you still feel like you need some instruction on what to do, Hannah’s recommendation is to search out some of the best online course.
“The Body Coach – aka Joe Wicks – is the king,” she says. “If you’re home schooling, do his PE in the morning. It’s not just for kids – it’s a really good half-hour workout.”
5. Get the kids involved
If you’re home-schooling while working, it can seem impossible to try and fit in fitness as well. Hannah’s suggestion is to get them involved. Try the Joe Wicks workout for starters – Hannah also firmly believes that we need to lead by example
“Kids are nosy by nature,” she says. “The best example you can set is to show them how much fun workouts are – so you might have to fake this! Don’t force them to join in, let them come to you.”
6. Make it short and sweet
Something is better than nothing, so if you can’t face an hour long workout, Hannah says try HIIT – a high-intensity interval training technique where you give all-out effort for a short period of time, followed by a shorter period of rest.
Here’s Hannah’s HIIT workout – do 40 seconds of work, 10 seconds rest
– Kettlebell swing and goblet squat/push
– Mountain climbers and plank
– Bicep and tricep curls with a wine bottle
– Push-ups and plank
– Plank walk outs and wall sit
– Crunches and leg raises
– Hip raises and holds
– Hip raises and holds – one leg
Got a taster for this home workout lark? Here are a few of our favourite online fitness classes
The TGIOF team enjoyed a night out at one of Zoe McNulty’s ace Strutology classes and now, thank the lord, she’s bringing her own particular kind of joy online to a device near you. Not only will you get an ace workout, but you’re feel pretty darn sassy by the end of one of her classes!
We don’t all want to jump and down thank you very much Joe Wicks! If you want something to help soothe you through these strange times, yoga is definitely the way to go. Yoga International has a whole heap of classes to follow, including courses and meditation.
Struggling to get near a screen during this lockdown? Us too, thanks to small children and partners being at home. This is where Aaptiv comes into its own – it’s audio fitness so you just need headphones or a speaker and you’re good to go. Comes with a free trial as well.
In New York, this is the place to go to do the coolest, most energetic dance classes in the city. Now they’re bringing them to You Tube for free twice a day. Tune in, pretend you’re Arianna Grande for 15 minutes, and feel much happier about life.
This is our one-stop shop for all sorts of classes. From strength training to yoga, the classes are led by a variety of well-known faces from the fitness world including celeb trainer Matt Roberts. You can also go head to head with your friends on a leader board, making it even more social in these very anti-social