How to Have Great At-Home Workouts : Do you want to enjoy all the benefits of a healthy lifestyle without leaving home? There are dozens of advantages that come with working out at home, including the chance to save on gym memberships, spend more time with the family, always have an open shower stall available at the end of workouts, never having to commute or hunt for a parking spot, and still having access to lower life insurance premiums by staying in top-notch health.
But there are a few caveats that come with all the great benefits of exercising at home. For instance, even small pieces of equipment can be costly, you need to plan for safety, and it can often be tough to coordinate family activities around your at-home workout needs. As with so many other lifestyle changes, deciding to make your living space an exercise space takes a certain amount of planning. Here are the key concepts to keep in mind as you begin building your personal gymnasium.
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Shop Wisely for Equipment
Unless you have the need for professional-level, brand-new equipment, give serious consideration to buying second-hand pieces. Besides the usual online searches for local people selling rowing machines, weight benches, and leg presses, call local gyms and see if they sell their used items to the public. Many do, and you can often snag major discounts when you buy from a facility owner who is desperate to recoup costs.
Lower Insurance Premiums and Ability to Sell a Policy
Regular exercise is one of the easiest and most enjoyable ways to maintain basic health. Everyone knows that being healthy has many of its own rewards, like feeling and looking great, having more energy, and enjoying restful sleep each night. What does life insurance have to do with exercise? Plenty, because every policy application either asks medical questions or requires you to take a doctor’s exam before you get approved for coverage. And, in most all cases, the better your overall health, the lower will be your policy premiums.
The additional part of the insurance equation, which people often don’t know about, is that you can sell a life policy for cash should the need arise. The good news is that when you choose to do so, you can use the proceeds for any purpose at all. The choice is yours. What is the value of your current policy? You can find out in a matter of seconds the amount of money you could get if you sell your policy, regardless of your reason for doing so.
Put Safety into the Design
Be careful with free weights and dumbbells. The small, heavy objects can cause serious injury to you, your children, pets, and others who are nearby when you do your routines. Additionally, always follow safety instructions that come with machines like treadmills, stair climbers, and rowing seats. The goal is to become healthier, not make a trip to the emergency room after being injured.
And just in case if something really happens and you or someone else gets hurt – you should always be prepared so it wouldn’t be a bad thing to take a first-aid and CPR course online. You will feel safer!
Incorporate Outdoor Activities
Don’t assume that all your working out has to take place indoors. Incorporate backyard space and neighborhood sidewalks whenever possible. Many exercise enthusiasts like to combine resistance (weight training) with cardio (running and jogging). If you don’t own a treadmill, or despise the idea of running/walking on a motorized belt, head outdoors when the weather allows and job around the block, walk for a few minutes, or do the cardio portion of your routine at a nearby school track. Mixing indoor and outdoor activities helps break the monotony that can tend to set in when you do a long exercise session in a single room. Fresh air and being outside can also improve your mood and emotional wellbeing. There are several surprising facts about depression that you might not realize are linked to physical activity as well as the great outdoors, so you really have nothing to lose here.
Post a Log as Incentive
Want to keep your enthusiasm level up once the home gym is fully furnished and decked out? Post a log chart on the wall where you can check off daily workouts, note progress in weight lifting goals, or record the number of miles run in a week. Whatever your particular favorite activities are, it helps to create a visible list of how you’re doing with all your health goals. Another good reason to use wall posters is to avoid relying on your phone or other device to constantly look up data. Along with the incentive factor, you can use a wall chart for listing daily workout routines, exercise sequences, and rest periods.
Hire a Trainer for the First Few Sessions
If you have trouble establishing a routine that meets all your needs, or just want a bit of assistance getting started, consider hiring a personal trainer for one or two sessions. Costs are relatively low, and you can gain valuable information in just an hour or two with an expert. After that, it’s simply a matter of sticking to your routines and weekly schedule. If your enthusiasm begins to falter, have the trainer come back for a couple more sessions of encouragement and to help you adjust your routines.
Have Healthy Snacks Nearby
Avoid one of the pitfalls of home-based fitness, namely having access to unhealthy snacks and post-workout foods. Deter those cravings by keeping a supply of healthful foods like fresh fruit, raw vegetables, and other non-junk-food items. Some home fitness enthusiasts also prefer to keep a cooler of water in their workout space so they don’t have to keep dashing off to the kitchen.
Invite Friends to Your Gym
Home-based fitness need not be a solo affair. One way to make sessions interesting and fun is to invite friends. Always remember to give visitors a safety tour before beginning a joint workout. Plus, it’s a matter of courtesy to allow your guest the choice of equipment and music (if you use an audible system).
Get a Physical Exam Before You Start
Exercise has its own rewards, but it’s imperative to get clearance from a doctor before beginning, especially if it’s been a few years since you’ve been active. But, even if you consider yourself to be in excellent shape, it’s smart to get a physical exam before significantly changing your physical activities. Tell your doctor the reason for the visit. Many physicians and clinics perform special check-ups for this very purpose.
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