Yes, you can exercise from the comfort of your own home while you keep moving this winter to strengthen your body and mind.
For a few months, the outdoors has been your gym, an array of sidewalks, trails, gardens—maybe even waterways—providing plenty of fun and creative opportunities for activity.
Now, with the days getting shorter and the temperatures dropping, you may find your enthusiasm for exercising outdoors; In some places and some individuals, outdoor workouts may not be safe, and your budget, schedule, or health concerns may prevent you from going to the gym. However, this is not a reason to hibernate. In fact, it is imperative that your physical and mental health keep moving this time of year.
He writes, “Constant exercise during the winter months is key to promoting and maintaining physical strength and stability, which helps protect us from flabby muscle injuries.” Catherine CullenAnd LMSW, a New York City-based psychotherapist at Juniper Medical Services Co-authored The Truth About Exercise Addiction: Understanding the Dark Side of Inspiration. “Exercise during the winter months also helps support a healthy metabolism and blood sugar regulation as well as the healthy functioning of all of our organs.”
She also cites the cognitive and emotional benefits.
“We think more clearly when we are regularly active,” she wrote, noting the increased flow of oxygen to our brains during exercise, as well as the ability of exercise to stimulate the growth of new neurons in our brains.
In the winter months though, we are less likely to be physically active and more likely to feel blue, Colin notice.
She writes that exercise can prevent us from feeling down, adding, “The empowerment we feel from physical activity can also make us feel more motivated to leave our homes, make plans with friends, and engage in activities that help us reduce stress, anxiety, and symptoms of depression.”
So how do you get started?
Just never. Consider time, equipment, goals, and fitness level when choosing an exercise, according to Melanie McNeil, PT, OCS, SCS, and director of orthopedics and sports therapy at Baylor College of Medicine.
If you are short on time: For those with limited time, McNeil notes Short interval workouts are most effective. “These exercises provide high-intensity training for short periods of time to raise your heart rate and burn maximum calories in the shortest possible time,” she wrote. “If you are inexperienced and unsure how to perform the exercises correctly, a few sessions with a personal trainer may be called for.”
If you are trying to lose weight: If you want to lose weight, McNeil writes, building muscle is vital, noting that a pound of muscle at rest burns six calories an hour, versus a pound of fat, which burns only two calories an hour. She explains that the more muscle you build, the more calories you’ll burn while sitting and working or relaxing.
If you are trying to build muscle: “As we get older, our chances of developing osteoporosis and osteoporosis increase, especially in females,” McNeil writes. “Bones react to the stress they are subjected to, so to keep them strong and reduce the risk of these diseases, a strengthening program is advocated. Even body-weight exercises such as squats, push-ups, and mountain climbers are effective in building muscle.”
Find good resources
If you are online: “When looking at the exercises, look for someone who leads the exercise in a reputable way, who you feel describes how to perform the exercises in a way that you understand, exercises in which the exercises you perform are challenging but in no way painful,” McNeil writes, explaining the pain. The bad” is when your body is telling you that something is wrong. As she also notes, “If it doesn’t challenge you or if you do exercises that you don’t feel comfortable doing, then this isn’t the exercise for you.”
If you are purchasing equipment: McNeal writes that simple and inexpensive equipment, including a set of dumbbells, a mat, sliders, a Swiss ball and a jump rope can be used to get a great workout. She also notes that a recumbent bike or treadmill works well for cardio if you have the space.
If you use what you have: When it comes to equipment, McNeal notes that a chair or stool can be used instead of investing in a step. In the meantime, you can also turn everyday household activities into opportunities to exercise. Instead of bending at the waist, McNeil suggests squatting and holding squats as you dust. Or you write: “Try to clean while standing on only one leg. Make sure you balance each leg because one tends to be better than the other and you can focus on improving each side. When you get things off the floor, try doing it on one leg – on Example when a golfer comes out with a ball out of the hole – balancing on one leg and bent at the waist. This is the single leg deadlift and will work on hamstring strength as well as balance.”
Accept the positives – and the possibilities
While jogging up and down stairs or doing the dog in your living room may not sound as fun as jogging along a lake or exercising outdoors in a park, exercising at home has its perks, and plenty of exercisers. “I think with the pandemic, a lot of people are exercising at home,” McNeil wrote.
If you are looking for a workout companion, know that this is still an option. You can adjust group classes, Colin notes, adding that you can connect with a friend or family member and commit to a workout at the same time via a video chat platform or over the phone.
You may also discover some enthusiastic participants in your home. The benefit of home training if you have kids, MacNeil writes, is that they see you exercise and work hard, and they want to be involved.
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