As an avid lover of all things health and wellness, I’ve been pretty upset that gyms have been closed for a while now. Many of my friends and I loved weightlifting, running on treadmills or tracks and swimming or rock climbing. The list can go on forever. Now that states have begun mandatory shutdowns of businesses that hold these amenities and continue to keep us on lockdown, it has been hard to keep up with the fitness routines we all have gotten used to. Luckily, there are a few, somewhat enjoyable ways to get in the workout you need in your own home. If you aren’t used to exercising regularly, use this time to start getting in the routine. It’ll benefit both your mind and your body.
- For The Cardio Lovers: HIIT and Sprints
If you love to run on treadmills or tracks, running outside is definitely a plausible option. However, you may get bored in the coming months of running the same routes around your neighborhood or weather may become an issue on some days. This is where HIIT circuits and sprinting comes in. HIIT (high-intensity interval training) circuits are one of the best ways to keep your heart rate up while also keeping your muscles engaged. If you’re trying to tone quickly, HIIT will keep you sore for days but not as sore as sprints. Many people may not be in an area to be able to perform sprints, but if you are, this is one of the best ways to lose weight (if that is your goal). 4x100s, 4x60s and 4x30s are all good beginner sprint circuits to keep your body in shape and increase your heart health extremely quickly.
- For The Gym Machine users: Dumbbell Accessory Exercises
Many students may be used to going to the gym and using machines like the leg extension, leg curl and smith machines, which is definitely not ideal in this whole quarantining situation. While there might not be an easy way to replicate machines in your home, dumbbell exercises will do the trick. Try and aim for the same amount of days you went to the gym in the beginning and start keeping track of the muscle groups you would train and find corresponding dumbbell exercises. I guarantee you will be able to find matching exercises that target the same muscle group and it may be even more effective than the machines you’re used to. Dumbbells can be found anywhere from Target to Amazon so stock up and get ready to get moving.
- For The Newbies: Circuit Style Workouts
If you’re just starting a new fitness journey, don’t push yourself too quickly just yet. Start by either doing HIIT circuits if you’re looking to lose weight or dumbbell circuits if you’re trying to tone up and maintain your weight. A combination of both HIIT and dumbbell circuits throughout the week is also a good way of starting small but effective. Attempt to aim for three to four times a week since you’re stuck at home anyways. Look up circuit-style workouts on Instagram or online, find ones you are able to do equipment-wise and start there! Remember to keep eating a healthy amount and stick with a circuit routine for at least two weeks before switching it up so you can get the results you’re looking for!
- For The Weightlifters and Powerlifters: Combinations
If you’re a dedicated powerlifter or weightlifter, gym closings are probably your worst nightmare. Many of us aren’t lucky enough to have a home gym but with a combination of dumbbell accessory workouts and some HIIT here and there, you’ll be able to still get a decent workout in. Nutrition will play a large part in whether you’ll be able to keep up your weight so start working on a meal plan for yourself or set alarms to eat so you don’t forget. If you’re lucky enough to own a home gym, power rack and all, not much has changed for you, but maybe machines. This is easily solvable with dumbbell replacements and barbell workouts as well. In either situation, just remember that powerlifting meets will not be back and up running for a while so you have time.
Hopefully, you fall into one of these categories so you can start adding a little bit of a different twist to some of your quarantined days here and there. It can be frustrating not being able to go to the gym if you’re in the habit of going regularly, whether it’s a few days a week or every day. However, just take the weeks day by day and focus on your workout for the day, not your weight, body composition or strength. Stay positive and use your workouts as a way to clear your head and mind while you’re going crazy in this lockdown.