Exercising at home- keeping fit for free
Here are some home based, zero cost exercise ideas for keeping fit for free! There are many advantages to working out at home for example; convenience, cost and comfort. For these activities, you will not require any specialist equipment but will need basic workout kit, motivation, and plenty of enthusiasm!
Circuits at home are easy to set up and have great results for fat burning and fitness. Try this equipment free circuit for whole body strength, bodyweight exercises and fat burning.
You will need; workout kit (including good trainers), some music, and a timer set for 30 seconds.
- jogging on the spot – alter speed to suit your fitness
- lunges – alternating legs
- press ups
- star jumps
- wall push up
Perform each exercise for 30 seconds, working from beginning to end. Begin with 2 sets of this circuit, then increase/decrease your work periods as you feel able.
Keep it fresh and fun by changing the number of exercises you complete each time, and by substituting or adding new exercises in. Circuit training is flexible and you can decide what areas to focus on, so go on, mix it up to suit your goals and body. You can also do these circuits after a run by simply omitting the jogging during each set. Do remember the importance of stretching before and after your circuits.
I love running. Fresh air, head space and a thoroughly good workout.. and all for free! The benefits of running for mental health is well documented, with many finding that it really helps manage symptoms of anxiety and depression. A complete beginner? Start with the NHS Couch to 5K guidelines. Do invest in quality kit when running, particularly your running shoes, socks and sports bra- they are worth their weight in gold. See our Summer running essentials recommendations here.
The Strava app can be really motivational. Link up virtually with friends and family and give each other kudos for running, walking and cycling effort. Build on your running ability by increasing your speed and/ or your distance. You may also enjoy including running intervals. Why not finish your workout with some strengthening exercises- see the circuit ideas above.
For those that like to be guided through exercise, try some online activity. My favourites include:
- Peleton Fitness yoga where you can choose the length, ability, instructor and even music for your class from hundreds of streamed and live classes. I find these really motivational and have subscribed after loving my free trial.
- Yoga with Adriene has classes of many lengths, styles and abilities so there really is something to suit every yogi. Invest in a good quality yoga mat and try to practise little and often. I love the flow classes.
- bhliveactive have a wide range of workouts to choose from ranging from yoga, meditation, HIIT training, and more.
- The NHS website is packed with workouts including Pilates, yoga, dancing and aerobics. Plenty of choice of all abilities and for those with specific physical restrictions or injuries.
- If you really love yoga, perhaps consider taking online yoga teacher training? Many of the the course are very reasonably priced and could open up a whole new career.
Circuits and more:
- Joe Wicks provides workouts on his Youtube channel. Join his PE lessons from the library at a time to suit you. Joe has raised a huge amount of money for the NHS by donating his proceeds during the lockdown.
- Youtube a class with Meredith Shirk. You can focus on a specific part of the body to work on and each has modifications too.
- Local Cambridgeshire based PT and yoga teacher Helena is offering a monthly subscription of £12 for that personal touch of yoga classes via zoom. You will also be able to access 5 minute workouts and more as part of your subscription. More detail of Helena’s online classes here.
Get on your bike:
Cycling is another great way of getting plenty of fresh air and exercise. Try the aforementioned Strava app to track your elevation, distance and speed. You can also try some HIIT training or cycling workouts whilst out and about for an extra challenge.
Get these FREE Apps:
- Strava , as previously mentioned, track your walks, runs of cycling. Support or compete against your contacts for an extra push.
- Couch to 5k supports you through the process of starting to run from scratch, giving you milestones and virtual rewards throughout.
- Nike Run Club and Map My Run are both great for tracking runs and your achievement. The apps offers guided runs and coaching too.
- Simply yoga is great for a guided yoga session. Choose the length of the class you wish to take and follow the instructions on your phone. Good for beginners and experienced yogis too.
- For one app with a wide range of activities try Peleton at home fitness. You can have a 30 day free trial and choose from yoga, cardio, running, meditation, bootcamp, and lots more. Choose your time and ability level.
Keeping fit for free:
Keeping mentally healthy is also extremely important, particularity in challenging times and circumstances. For relaxation, try these calming breathing exercises.
What other types of virtual and at home fitness do you enjoy? Please do let us know in the comments below.