Many of us have found ourselves unable to go to the gym during the COVID-19 pandemic. Lockdown and shelter-in-place precautionary measures have been enacted by public officials to slow the spread of this virus. We can't let this social distancing stop us from maintaining or improving our body's fitness level. We must find new ways to get our workouts in with what we have and learn new methods and techniques. When it comes to achieving your fitness goals, you can't let any excuse or obstacle get in your way. You must push forward and overcome it!
The most basic workouts you can do at home are bodyweight workouts. These are exercises performed with only the weight of your body. There is no gym or fancy equipment necessary for these! Many health and fitness experts use bodyweight workouts to stay fit all the time.
The American College of Sports Medicine has published a study in their Health & Fitness Journal demonstrated that bodyweight workouts are an efficient way to decrease body fat, improve VO2 max, and boost muscular fitness. Because you can modify bodyweight workouts for any fitness level, they are for anyone, anytime, anywhere.
Bodyweight workouts, like yoga, can increase the mobility and stability of your body by strengthening your stabilizer muscles. Stronger stabilizer muscles can also lead to strength gains in other workouts. Bodyweight workouts like these are great for building strength while developing technique and injury prevention skills. Weightlifting exercises tend to be hard on the body, especially the joints, which leads to injury.
So what are some bodyweight workouts you can do at home right now? Well, push-ups are an excellent starting point. This exercise strengthens the upper body, which includes the triceps, pectoral, and shoulder muscles. They are performed with varying degrees of difficulty, depending on your hand positioning, angle, and speed. Adding in other options like the clap push-up helps build quick-twitch muscle fibers and makes things more challenging. For the best results, you should set a push-up challenge for yourself. You can do this by gradually increasing the number of push-ups each week.
Sit-ups are another multi-muscle bodyweight workout that you can do almost anywhere. This exercise works the abdominals as well as the chest, hip flexors, lower back, and neck. When these core muscles are strong, our posture is improved. Sit-ups also help you burn calories, which decreases body fat.
Never skip leg day, right? Well, no worries. You don't have to skip leg day because you're stuck at home. Squats are an incredible way to work your lower body that only requires your body weight. The muscles involved in squats include glutes, quads, hamstrings, adductors, hip flexors, and calves. Plus, there are a variety of squats you can due to stay motivated.
Lastly, if you have access to a pull-up bar, like the ones that go in a doorway, you can get a great upper body workout in. No pull-up bar? No problem! A limb from a tree or and sturdy fixture you can hang from will work. You just have to be able to grip onto it, hang from it, and pull yourself back up. This bodyweight workout works your arms, forearms, back, and shoulders.
As you can see, there is no need to leave your house to get in a great workout. These bodyweight exercises are excellent ways to stay fit while staying home due to COVID-19. So stay home, stay fit, and stay healthy!