You can still get a great, effective workout while in quarantine
To say that the current COVID-19 outbreak has uprooted our way of living would be an incredible understatement. “Social distancing” is a term we’ve all grown familiar with. We’re all experts in telecommuting to work (now we have proof all those meetings could have been emails!). All around us, we’ve seen businesses shut their doors upon mandates from the government.
Included in that list of shuttered storefronts are some of brides’ favorite spots to get in a good sweat: No more Yoga at that studio down the block. No more 6am Soul Cycle class. No more Orange Theory treadmill sprints.
But just because these places are closed doesn’t mean you should give up completely on working out. In fact, it’s more important now than ever. Exercise has been proven time and time again to be a mood lifter and a stress reducer, a necessary component of both your physical and mental health. And let’s be honest- in these troubling and anxious times, we ALL need to make self-care a top priority.
Here are some easy (and free!) ways you can keep your beautiful bridal body moving, even though you’re stuck inside:
Online trials from fitness favorites:
Did you know that brands like Pure Barre (https://ondemand.purebarre.com), Daily Burn (https://dailyburn.com/landing) and even Peleton (https://www.onepeloton.com/app) are offering free trials for their online workout programs? You can access these awesome classes for anywhere from 30 to 90 days, completely free of charge. You won’t even need the $2500 bike- there are tons of classes available that require no equipment at all!
Free streaming workouts on social media and other sites:
Powerhouse fitness companies like Barry’s Bootcamp (https://www.instagram.com/barrys/) CrossFit (https://www.crossfit.com/at-home/workouts) and Planet Fitness (https://www.facebook.com/planetfitness/) have been offering free live streaming classes on Instagram and Facebook, or are offering free workouts on their websites. Can’t make the live stream because of that Zoom work call? No worries, most classes are recorded and saved on the company’s feed so you can catch them on your own time.
Use the outdoors as your gym:
Being cooped up in the house can get very old very quickly, so head outside for some sunshine and movement. Just taking a 30 minute walk around your neighborhood will release much needed endorphins. You can even use a park bench for a set of step ups, tricep dips, and push ups! Just make sure you’re staying 6 feet away from other park goers, and wash your hands when you come back inside!
Or, use this simple circuit!
If you’re pressed for time or new to starting exercise, try this equipment free circuit you can do in your living room, bedroom, home office, or anywhere you have some space!
If you’re a workout beginner, try this circuit once through. If you’re an exercise expert, try three to five rounds with no breaks. As always, check with your doctor before beginning any workout regimen!
- Squat: Stand tall with your hands clasped together in a “prayer” position, right in front of your chest. First, set your hips back like you’re about to sit down in a chair. Next, bend your knees to lower your hips closer to the ground. Get as low and as deep as feels comfortable. Then, squeeze your glutes (butt cheeks!) together, press your hips forward, and stand back up again. Repeat 10 times.
*PRO TIP*: Keep your chest tall and don’t let your torso fall forward when you bend your knees. Feel the majority of your weight pressed into the middle and heel of your foot, don’t let your heels raise off the ground. If you’re having trouble keeping the form, place a chair behind you and practice sitting down and standing back up again to get the movement right.
- Push up: Place your hands on the floor directly underneath your shoulders, and pop up to your toes behind you, about hip width apart. Feel your hips in line with your shoulders, and squeeze your glutes together. Don’t let your lower back “arch” towards the floor. Keeping your body in a straight line, lower your chest, torso, and hips all the way to the floor, squeezing your shoulder blades together as you go. Press yourself back up to the starting position, keeping your body in a straight line. Repeat 10 times.
*PRO TIP*: Push ups are easy to modify for all experience levels. If you’re new to exercise, instead of starting on your toes, begin on all fours, knees on the floor below your hips, and hands on the floor below your shoulders. Walk your hands out so that they are slightly in front of your body. Shift your chest forward so that it’s centered above your two hands, and lower your hips so that they are slightly below your shoulders. Bend your elbows and bring everything to the ground- chest, torso, and hips. Then push back up to the starting position.
- Sit up: Lie flat on your back with your knees bent and your feet on the floor, about 6 inches away from your hips. Bring both of your arms above your head. Take a big breath in. On your exhale, raise your hands towards the ceiling, pull your belly button in towards your spine, tuck your chin into your chest, and bring your head, shoulders, and back off of the floor until you’re in a sitting position. Slowly lower yourself back down to the floor, contracting your abs and slightly curving your spine as you go. Repeat 10 times.
*PRO TIP* Never use momentum to bring yourself up off the floor, and never come back down to the starting position with a flat back, placing strain into your lumbar spine. If you have lower back issues or are just starting a workout routine, modify your sit up to a crunch. Instead of bringing everything off the floor, lift your head and shoulder blades only. Contract the muscles of your abdominals, then slowly lower your head and shoulders back down to the floor.
Written by Jennifer Rizzuto,