Staying in shape — let alone making fitness gains — without leaving the house can be really challenging. With social distancing the current norm, streaming is the next hot thing in the fitness industry, but it can be difficult to sift through all the home workouts to find classes you actually enjoy and find motivating.
Below we rounded-up three types of exercise you should not forget during the lockdown, along with some of our favorite fitness resources.
CARDIO: bring your heart rate up
Whether you’re a hiker, climber, skier or biker, a decent level of cardiovascular endurance keeps you in the game. While for some disciplines, cardio is the most important element, it is still extremely beneficial not matter what activity you practice: it keeps your body healthy, staving off diseases associated with a sedentary lifestyle.
Running is without a doubt the most popular cardio exercise around the world, but there are many other ways to bring your heart rate up without leaving the house. You can opt for low-level cardio that increases recovery, HIIT training to supercharge your whole body, or anything in between. There are plenty of options that don’t require much space.
While in theory not many online fitness programs focus on cardio, in practice it is the most commonly found type of exercise. Try some of the free workouts from Kayla Itsines; despite the kitschy “Bikini Body” tagline, Itsines’ programs deliver results.
CALISTHENICS: build strength
Calisthenics, or body-weight exercise, is great cross-training for any outdoor sport. Especially popular with climbers, calisthenics is also a sports discipline in its own right and can be practiced at home with zero or minimal equipment (a pull-up bar is useful but not essential).
An interesting fact is that increasing strength boosts the results achieved by endurance athletes such as runners or bikers. So, whatever your outdoor discipline of choice, building lean muscle will help.
If you want to learn in a more systematic way, you can also order online one of the comprehensive books on calisthenics: Complete Callisthenics or Calisthenics for Beginners, also available for e-readers.
YOGA: clear your brain
Yoga has a number of benefits for the body, but most importantly, a scientifically proven impact on the brain. In times of high stress and uncertainty, it is extremely important to find time to slow down and spend some quality time with yourself.
Yoga with Adrienne is a great resource not only for beginners but for anyone needing to relax and rest actively. The “Under 10-minute Morning Yoga” series is a beautiful way to start a productive, stress-free day.
PLANNING: stay on track
Being stuck at home, it may seem like you have all the time in the world to reach your fitness goals and get ready for the next adventure. However, this kind of thinking is the biggest enemy of sustainable progress. You end up either getting too tired and not recovering for your next workout, or falling prey to procrastination.
To avoid both, plan your home workouts for at least one week ahead and make sure to stick to the schedule. At the same time, listen to your body and don’t be afraid to swap a hard calisthenics workout for a mild yoga session if you need to.
We may not know when the next adventure opportunity will come our way, but in the meantime, we can keep our spirits high and bodies ready to get back in the great outdoors.
Learn here, how, under current circumstances, outdoor recreation can put local communities at risk.