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No gym? No problem
Gyms and exercise studios may have closed their doors due to COVID-19, but that doesn’t mean you have to compromise your fitness goals.
With resources like YouTube and innovative fitness apps readily available, staying fit without leaving your house is more doable than ever before. Factor in free classes offered through social media live streams, and you have an abundance of options to stay fit at your disposal. Below you’ll find easy tips you can implement as well as a list of various resources we’ve compiled for those of you who want to try something new and mix up your quarantine fitness routine.
First, here are a few suggestions on how to optimize your workouts:
Invest in at-home equipment
Workouts utilizing just your body weight can be incredibly effective, but investing in a few key pieces of equipment will help you achieve that extra burn.
Beyond a basic yoga mat, consider investing in dumbbells, booty bands, resistance bands, a jump rope, ankle weights, yoga blocks, a kettlebell, a foam roller, an adjustable plyometric box, a medicine ball or maybe even a small bench. You can find equipment at Wal-Mart or through online retailers like Amazon.
Create a workout playlist
If you haven’t already, we recommend taking the time to create a music playlist that puts you in the right headspace to work out. You can even create different playlists for different types of workouts; create a yoga playlist with soft tunes as well as a playlist with pop/hip-hop music for your cardio-based workouts. And if you’re too lazy to create your own, Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube has curated workout playlists.
Dress like you’re going to the gym
Experts recommend you get out of your pyjamas and dress for work as per usual because it puts you in the proper headspace. This same principle carries over to exercise – don’t work out in your pyjamas. Just don’t do it.
Schedule your workouts
One of the best ways to stay on top of your workouts is to treat your workouts the way you would a video call conference. Mark it down on your schedule and then don’t allow yourself to make excuses. You wouldn’t bail on a meeting with your boss – so don’t bail on yourself; hold yourself accountable and stick to the schedule. Creating a structure within your schedule will help you stay organized and ultimately achieve your goals.
Here is a list of resources you can check out to jump-start your at-home fitness regime:
FitOn is a free fitness app that offers a variety of fitness classes perfect for the home. The workouts range from short five-minute stretch routines, 35-minute total body workouts and even 20-minute barre classes. Created by celebrity trainers, the workouts are fun, easy to follow and effective. You can work out solo or with your friends, and they even have fun challenges that you (and your friends) can partake in together.
Centr, founded by Chris Hemsworth (aka Thor), is a fitness app with workouts developed by world-class trainers, complete with meal plans, recipes and even guided meditations. From March 23 and April 5, you can get a free six-week trial.
Yoga with Adriene
For those of you looking to find your zen while also getting a great workout, Yoga with Adriene is a great YouTube channel to explore. Adriene Mishler has countless yoga videos tailored to all levels and all bodies. You can do a class designed to relieve back pain one day and a class designed to improve your digestion and gut health the next.
She even has a recent 30-day at-home challenge on her channel – a perfect place to begin since we’re all not too sure how long we’ll be stuck at home for.
POPSUGAR Fitness, hosted by Anna Renderer, is a free fitness channel on YouTube dedicated to bringing on-trend fitness content to your screens. They have a large offering of unique classes, from kickboxing to hip-hop cardio dance, to runner’s recovery to belly dancing. If you’re looking to try fresh new workouts, this is a great channel to check out.
Nike Training Club
Before you even begin training, Nike Training Club starts you out with one of four personalized plans to help guide you along your fitness journey. The free app, which offers strength, endurance, yoga and bodyweight workouts, is incredibly user friendly – follow along with audio cues and even play music while you work out.
Created by power-fitness-couple Kelli and Daniel Segars, Fitness Blender is a YouTube channel with a strong cult following, and for good reason. Their workouts are straightforward, approachable and effective, from HIIT to Pilates to strength training.
In addition to their free workouts, the pair offers in-depth programs, four of which are now 70 per cent off.
Cassey Ho, a breath of fresh air in the YouTube fitness community, creates fun and effective Pilates workouts for Blogilates, a channel she started over 10 years ago. She offers everything from five-minute targeted workouts to 30-minute full-body toning workouts.
Pilates is a wonderful form of exercise – it was originally created for rehabilitation purposes, so it’s great for those who may have injuries or joint sensitivities.
She even made a free 30-day workout calendar to help her community stay active while at home.
The National Ballet of Canada
Sign up for their newsletter to receive notifications for upcoming classes; you can tune in for ballet classes with principal dancers and first soloists and pilates with the National Ballet’s in-studio director.
Underground Dance Centre
The Underground Dance Centre, which has been voted the “#1 dance class in Toronto” by BlogTO, will soon be offering online dance classes (at a charge) from all your favourite teachers. Yes. You can now get your groove on in the comfort of your living room. The online platform is not yet available, but will reportedly launch shortly. In the meantime, sign up for the pre-launch waitlist and get excited about all the dance styles you’ll soon be able to learn at home.