The coronavirus disease has forced governments around the world to call for the restriction of social gatherings. This has led to the eventual closure of public establishments like schools, malls, restaurants, and gyms.
While the need for social distancing and staying at home trumps going to a public gym, it doesn’t mean that you have to forego exercising. Exercise is important in boosting our immune system, managing anxiety, and maintaining a sense of well-being. All these combined can increase your ability to ward off viral infections including COVID-19.
It’s true that you may be stuck at home for some time to come, but you can still make the most of it and take the time to care for your physical health by doing a few indoor workouts.
In this post, we share with you some exercise tips so you can stay in great shape even during the pandemic.
1. Do Burpees for Total Body Workout
Burpees are considered the best home exercise by many fitness experts. Home workouts can’t offer the same intensity that weightlifting in the gym can. Unless you’re a hardcore weightlifter, you can get maximum results by diligently performing burpees. Regardless of fitness level, anyone can do burpees and reap great results. If you’re just starting out, you don’t have to complete 100 reps for your morning workout.
The key is to do a set of 5 to 10 reps or settle on a number of reps that’s challenging enough but equally doable for your fitness level. If you want to challenge yourself further, try gradually increasing it in the succeeding days until you reach 100 or 150 burpees. Consider following it up with the same number of squats, push-ups, and mountain climbers.
2. Engage Other Parts of Your Body Through Push-ups And Squats
- Bodyweight Exercises – If you want to throw in some variety to your workout, try adding bodyweight movements that aim to work other muscles of your body. Make sure to perform them at varying levels of difficulty. For instance, wherever anyone is in the fitness spectrum, they can do air squats anywhere and combine it with other bodyweight movements like lunges, mountain climbers, and push-ups. Performing these movements one after another can make for an effective home workout.
- Isometric Hold – For a more challenging set, you can do an isometric hold. As you reach the bottom of lunge or squat, try to hold that position as a means of training your muscles harder.
- Pulse Squat or Lunges – You can also try adding a “pulse” to your squats or lunges. Doing a pulse involves lowering down into a squat, moving halfway up to standing, and then back down, then standing all the way. Adding a pulse turns basic movements into advanced ones.
- Explosive Squats – If you want to add more heart-thumping action to your routine, you can jump when reaching the top of movements of squats or lunges. This helps pump your heart rate faster, thereby exercising it. A variation of explosive and plyometric exercises together with a circuit of other movements can spice up your workout without requiring extra time or space. Instead of doing regular squats, aim for 1 set of 10 jump squats, followed by a set of 10 regular squats. Wrap it up by lowering your body into a squat and holding that position for a good 15 to 30 seconds.
Any movement that uses up more oxygen to get your muscles to work harder is cardio. Elevating your heart rate long enough to exercise your breathing will earn you benefits. Whatever exercise you decide to perform, make sure to execute them properly to prevent exercise-related injuries.
3. Utilize Household Items as Fitness Equipment
Bodyweight exercises don’t require fancy gym equipment, but for the sake of variety, you can use common household items to perform some exercises.
- Chair – You can use a chair or a stool to support your squats. Stand over a chair and lower your body enough until your rear touches the seat. A chair can also be useful in training your upper body through tricep dips. Simply put your hands behind you on the chair. Walk your feet out in front of you then slowly, bend your elbows as you lower down and prop yourself back up.
- Water Jugs – In addition to giving you post-workout hydration, jugs of water also prove useful in applying some resistance for body movements like lunges, squats, and shoulder presses to name a few.
- Broomstick – For weightlifting, you can use a broomstick in lieu of a barbell to do squats. Although fully weighted barbells provide more challenge, a broomstick is enough to help you practice your form.
The key is to be more creative and resourceful in finding the right tools in your home to support your workouts without spending money. Just make sure that whatever item you use is sturdy enough so you can avoid any mishaps.
4. Practice Healthy Habits
Whether you workout at the gym or exercise at home (to lose weight, boost energy levels, or merely have fun), you need to complement this with other healthy habits. Doing so is essential in keeping your immune system up to prevent sickness.
- Observe proper handwashing.
- Stay hydrated.
- Clean off traces of sweat you might leave after working out.
- Get as much as 8 to 10 hours of sleep every night.
5. Eat Well
Eating nutrient-dense foods helps strengthen your immune system. Below are some dietary tips to keep in mind when on quarantine:
- Stock up on Essential Food Groups – Make sure to get:
- Natural protein sources like: fish and beans, vegetables, fruits, and tomatoes
- Whole-grain sources including: wheat bread, quinoa, rice, and pasta
- Food rich in healthy fats like: avocado, nuts, nut butter, and olive oil
- Limit Your Sodium Consumption – An excess of salt in the body can cause dehydration, rendering your body prone to dizziness and fatigue. Choose foods that are low on sodium and go easy on flavouring your food with salt. Consider using salt alternatives like basil, thyme, oregano, and rosemary. You can also use spices like chilli powder, pepper, and turmeric.
- Consume Water and Electrolytes – Allocate a gallon of clean water per day for every member in your household including your pet. Consider having sports drinks as your source of calories and electrolytes and drink these beverages if you’re sick to restore your appetite.
Skipping gym workouts while adhering to stay at home orders doesn’t mean putting your fitness goals on the back burner. You can get a full-body workout (and even some cardio) home with little to no equipment at all. While you’re at it, stay strong and healthy by nourishing your body, getting enough rest, and observing proper hygiene.
If you find yourself needing professional help to treat an injury after a home workout, contact Oriole Physiotherapy and Rehabilitation Centre. We aim to provide our clients with the latest techniques and procedures available in the area. Our staff is dedicated to giving each patient exceptional care. We also provide orthotic devices to help injured individuals regain full mobility so they return to their normal activities. For inquiries, call us at (416) 221-0772 or fill out this form.