If home workouts are what you rest your fitness laurels on in the steady decline towards Christmas, then making sure you’re doing them right is incredibly important as well.
Between the various office Christmas parties, streams of belated (read: never ending) birthday celebrations and school friends get-togethers, the ratio of late nights to ‘oops, that’s another morning workout missed’ starts to really add up. But, this is where the real beauty of fitness comes into play.
So long as you’re working hard, pushing yourself, challenging yourself and not slacking off, just because ‘no-one’s watching’, you’re just as able to see results and improve as the person still schlepping to the gym each morning.
Is it effective to workout at home?
As the old adage goes, ‘the best workout, is the one you do,’ and when it comes to working out at home, the rule still applies. In fact, exercising where you live may make your fitness routine more likely to stick.
‘Exercising at home makes your routine more sustainable – there’s no travel involved and your post-workout shower is ready there for you,’ adds Chloe Twist, personal trainer
How to make sure you’re working out at home right
Home workout tip 1: Create a workout space
‘Setting up a mini ‘gym’ in the corner of a room or in a designated space is a great way to make sure you get the most out of at home workouts,’ says David Wiener, personal trainer at fitness app Freeletics.’Firstly, you’ll have everything you need in one spot, so you’ll spend less time looking for things and more time working out. Secondly, this space will become synonymous with working out and going at it hard.
Home workout tip 2: Get moving
While stocking up on your very own weights not covered in strangers’ sweat might sound appealing, it shouldn’t be your only priority. ‘A common mistake is to buy equipment before you’ve established a routine and then not use it,’ notes Lyndsey Todd, personal trainer at The Training Room.’Remember, you need to get into the habit of exercising first.’ This will also help ensure you don’t use the excuse of ‘waiting for Amazon so I can workout’.
Home workout tip 3: Only buy key equipment
Once you are in the swing of things and ready to increase the resistance it’s time to invest in kit. However you don’t need everything that a gym does. ‘Most kettlebell exercises can be done with a heavy dumbbell and vice-versa,’ says WH digital editor Amy Lane. ‘I recommend having one heavy weight and a set of lighter weights.’Lyndsey also suggests purchasing resistance bands because ‘they’re versatile and don’t take up too much room’.
Home workout tip 4: Eliminate distractions
That includes the dog and your mobile. ‘You can be easily distracted at home – be that family members, pets, the TV, someone at the door or the phone ringing – which could lead to skipping a workout or cutting it short,’ says David. ‘Take steps to remove or minimise these – like diverting the house phone to answer phone or putting a sign on the door to ask family members to answer the door if anyone calls round.
Home workout tip 5: Mute notifications
Daria Kantor, personal trainer and founder of fitness platform TruBe, says being in the right frame of mind is essential. ‘I always find it helpful to get myself in the right mindset for working out – especially when I’m home alone and probably feeling lazy,’ she says. ‘Tell yourself that for the next 25 minutes – or however long – you are focusing on nothing but yourself.’ Please excuse us while we turn our phone to Airplane mode.
Home workout tip 6: Make sure you’re warming up and cooling down
Studies show that priming your body for a workout boosts muscle strength and power – so don’t skip a warm-up just because you’re at home. ‘Remember to always do a warm-up before your session and a cool down, including stretches, at the end,’ says Lyndsey. They’re super important for helping your body to prepare for exercise and recover afterwards.’ Does passing out on sofa count for the latter?