Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s more important than ever to stay healthy and physically active. While this is a difficult time for many, maintaining a healthy level of activity is important for not only your physical health but also your mental health.
Contrary to what many believe, being active doesn’t always mean purchasing an expensive gym membership. Many may still not have access to, or feel comfortable visiting, their local gym. You don’t need to dedicate several hours a day just to stay healthy. The days of 5 a.m. workouts and bulky equipment are gone.
With the right exercises and your own body weight, you can achieve a workout that brings the same result as spending time in your local gym. The best part about these exercises is that not only can anyone perform them, but they can also be done in the comfort of your home. Whether you’re short on time, traveling for work, or just prefer to stay home, these moves will get the job done.
HOW TO: If you’ve been inactive, start with a few of these moves 1-2 days a week to get comfortable, then work your way up to a minimum of 3-5 days a week. Do three sets of 10 to 15 reps of each exercise. Incorporate more activities, like walking, as you progress.
- Air squat: Stand with your feet slightly wider than hip-width apart. Point toes slightly outward and clasp your hands at your chest. Push your hips back and bend at the knees. Bend as low as you can while keeping your chest lifted. Press through your heels back to starting position.
- Lunge: Start at the same standing position as the air squat. Step forward with your right foot and bend both knees at a 90-degree angle. Make sure your right knee extends past the tip of your right toe. Step back and repeat with the left leg.
- Bridge: Lie on the ground face up, with your knees bent and your feet placed on the ground. Push through your heels and raise your hips to the ceiling while contracting your glutes. Your body will form a straight line. Lower yourself back onto the floor and repeat.
- 6 inches: Lie in the same starting position as the bridge. With your arms at your sides and your lower back stable on the ground, lift your legs 6 inches off the ground. Hold for 30 to 60 seconds.
- Plank: Start on your hands and knees, with your shoulders over your wrists. Step back and engage your thighs and glutes to keep your body straight. Try pushing the ground away from you. Hold for 30 to 60 seconds.
- Mountain climber: Start in the same position as the plank. Engage your core (contract abdominal muscles) to keep your body straight. Drive your left knee into your chest, quickly step back, and repeat with the right knee.