In 2009 we are going to see a seismic shift in how people get fit. For the last 20 years people have flocked to large commercial gyms after the holiday season to start shedding some post Christmas turkey fat in time to hit the beaches the following summer.
This is traditionally the time of year that gyms and health clubs sign up most new members. However, the current global economic crisis and credit crunch is going to cause a large reduction in new memberships.
More people are letting their club memberships expire, and deciding that it is time to go it alone. So, what are the best ways to get fit, without burning a hole in your bargain bucket pocket? Exercising at home of course.
Home exercise is practically free, and one of the easiest and most structured ways to exercise at home is to follow a circuit training program. There are many other advantages of circuit training at home.
Advantages of home fitness workouts
- You can exercise at any time of the day, early in the morning, or late at night. There is never a reason to miss a workout.
- You will never have to queue for an exercise machine or space on the floor mats.
- You can chose which equipment to have in your home gym.
- You do not need to fight for a car parking space
- You do not have to clean the equipment after using it – if you don’t want to!
- You will not catch anyone else’s germs
- You will not catch fungal infections either!
- You do not have to resort to spending a fortune at the club bar to quench your thirst after the workout
- You do not have to leave home – great news in winter months with ice/snow on the roads.
- You can play the music of your choice without headphones!
- You do not have to worry if your bum looks big in your new Lycra shorts.
- You have your own private changing room and shower.
Disadvantages of home fitness workouts
- You are on your own, there are no personal trainers to guide you (although you may be able to find a personal trainer to come to your house)
- You have to buy all your own equipment
- Home use equipment is not as durable as commercial quality equipment, and it can be costly to fix
- You have to clean your own equipment!
- Most people cannot install a swimming pool, sauna, Jacuzzi or squash court.
- No gym classes to attend, no attractive aerobics instructors.
- No socialising after in the health club bar.
Ways to Get Fit and Workout at Home
Knowing various methods of exercising is essential to maintaining your fitness at home. If you think that you can get fit and stay fit with just the latest fitness DVD, then you will likely soon lose motivation and fail. Here are our recommended ways to workout at home:
- Circuit training. Circuit training is possibly the best way for anyone to get fit. The term circuit training is broad, in that it can include many different types of exercise. People often speak of weight training circuits, football circuits as well as cardio circuits. But we refer simply to the traditional style of exercise – old school physical training exercises: press ups, sit ups, star jumps, skipping, squats, squat thrusts, burpies, lunges, box jumps and sprints. Simple but effective. These traditional exercises are used by martial artists and military training instructors to get people fighting fit.
- Boxing training. Boxers are certainly amongst the fittest professional athletes. Their training routines are intensive and designed to build stamina, speed and strength. These attributes will get you fit. You can pick up a punch bag and gloves online for a reasonable price, and the circuit training exercises require little or no equipment.
- Weight Training with Free Weights. Unfortunately we do not mean free to buy, but free of cables. Many people think that to workout at home they require an expensive home gym. Although we welcome you to purchase a home gym from our store, free weights are best, and cheaper. To start strength training, you only need a barbell with weights. You can even live without dumbbells to start with. However, it is advisable to get a solid bench and ideally a power rack too for added safety. When starting out with weight training, perform the compound exercises: squats, deadlifts, bench presses, bent over rows, upright rows, shoulder press, clean and press, power cleans. These will put you in good stead and build muscle quickly.
- Yoga workouts. Yoga is something that is actually very much suited to the home. Yoga requires only a small space, little equipment (a yoga mat will suffice) and is not as complex as many people think. In fact, yoga clubs are often full of people that could quite happily do all the exercises without the aid of the teacher – the teacher merely acts as a prompt for each exercise.
- DVD Fitness Workouts. Although we said that you may get bored with doing the same DVD workouts all the time, they are an excellent way to learn to get into shape, and also provide excellent motivation. Some people actually feel more motivated with a DVD – they are more confident, as no-one can see them. The instructors are often professional presenters that are better at providing motivation. Also, many DVD’s are an excellent way to learn to get fit in the first place – whether you are learning yoga, weight training or Pilates.
- Follow a celebrity workout. Celebrities often inspire people to get fit, and we have many celebrity workouts here for you to learn form.
- Start walking, jogging or running. OK, unless you buy a treadmill, this is not strictly a “home workout” – but you do not need to be a member of a gym. Jogging is a very affordable and effective way to get fit. Not ideal if you have knee problems or are very overweight though.
There are many other ways to get fit and beat the credit crunch. Contact some old friends and see if they want to play football / soccer some time, or just put on some music and dance the night away in your living room.
In fact, dance workout DVD’s are becoming more popular again, partly due to the success of Dancing with the Stars and the UK’s Strictly Come Dancing, but also due to the credit crunch.