As someone who tries to keep in shape by taking regular exercise I know that the past few months have been particularly difficult trying to get motivated to do any form of exercise. Between looking after children, on top of working from home there sometimes just isn’t enough hours in the day – or so it would seem – so fitting exercise into that time as well can seem nigh on impossible.
In addition, I don’t know about you but I find running on a treadmill just tediously boring (apologies to the runners out there) and the stationery bike just as bad. So what is the best way to exercise in the current climate, and for anyone working from home? What works and what doesn’t and is there the perfect WFH exercise?
Start Off With Some Stretches…..
I’ve searched through loads of you tube videos trying to find one that is a good warm up routine. Anyway I found this one here which I quite enjoyed. It’s simple enough to do at your desk at home or if you’re feeling a bit more energetic then, at the start of a longer routine.
The important thing is to warm up the body so that it is ready for exercises to come as well as to ensure the muscles are stretched sufficiently to avoid strains and to improve flexibility.
Once you have warmed up, it’s either time to go for a walk, a run if you are ready for that, or to do some kind of workout at home.
There are loads of exercise routines out there to choose from, depending on your current fitness levels and your goals.
For a few years now I have been following a couple of different routines. Both have varying degrees of difficulties but what I like about them both is that they are challenging and varied enough to keep my interest over the course of the work-out. Both these course give you everything you need from warm up routines to cool downs at the end. They will also let you track your progress to let you see how your doing.
Now that is maybe not a name you have heard of before. Originating in Germany it is a customized fitness app which tailors body weight workouts around your own ability. This has been brilliant over the last few months when gyms have been off limits creating personalized routines based on your own feedback. Initially you feed in your current fitness level, age, weight, what equipment you have (if any) and how often you would want to train. It then gives you specific routines to perform. The app tracks how long you take to do these (you tap on the app to move on to the next exercise) and at the end you give feedback on how you got on. This will then change the next workout to keep it challenging. It’s a simple idea but the app is really good at showing you how to perform the exercises as your doing them. It even suggests some motivating music to listen to while you are working out. It works equally well for men as for women, comes with a heap of free to use individual exercises and routines.
Another part of the Freeletics is a diet coach which will keep you on track with ideas for meals and snacks based on your feedback. I have not taken advantage of this section yet, but I have heard good things from other athletes.
You have the option to committing to what they call fitness journeys depending on your goal as well as running and weight training options too.
At the moment they are offering 20% discount on plans if you click through on the following link here: Freeletics
I honestly can’t recommend this enough, it saved me from giving up in the gym after a couple of months on the treadmill as it was just too boring. The option each week to change the number of days you want to work out makes it especially good as some weeks you just can’t get to the gym (or the kitchen floor) as much as you would like.
The other option I have used this year is Insanity. Not for the faint-hearted, this plan is full on go, go, go! It is basically a HIIT ( that’s high intensity interval training for those who don’t know) class with the main guy Shaun T. Encouraging you to keep going and “bring it”. The full course that is provided is different workouts lasting between 20 and 60 minutes which you are meant to do 6 days a week for 60 days.
As you can see it’s quite a commitment but I can guarantee you will be really fit by the end of it. I have to admit that I did these in my lunch hour and also that after the first month I was finding it difficult to fit them in to one hour and get showered as well, especially once you get past the first 30 days and the pace picks up (if you thought that was possible!)
If you are committed to getting into shape however this is the one to go for. Perfect for working from home as no one need see what sort of sweaty mess you get into. I can guarantee that you will loathe a couple of the folk exercising along with Shaun T as they make it look relatively easy AND make annoying comments (i’m naming no names though here!)
You also get your sheet for recording progress (you do a short fitness test every couple of weeks to see how your doing). I can guarantee you will think you physically won’t be able to do any more reps after that first fitness test but it’s amazing to see the progress as you slowly get fitter.
Do it if you seriously want to get in shape and are able to commit to two months of almost daily exercises. I found that after a month I was getting just a little fed up of repeating similar exercise routines and found myself missing a day or two or doing a Freeletics workout just for the variety. Stick with it though and you’ll be seriously fit.
Link to Insanity is here.
So that’s my two recommendations for getting fit at home when you are working from home and even when you’re not. I used to do Freeletics routines at the gym at work so they can be done anywhere.
How do you keep fit? Do you have a routine that you follow? Let me know in the comments below, I would love to hear from you. Also, if you have any questions on either of these Programs just pop your question down in the comments and i’ll get back to you as soon as possible.