Exercising with COVID 19: How to create an effective full-body workout when you can’t go to the gym

As COVID-19 continues to spread globally many of the Gladiator Tribe are feeling the impact of being restricted to their home. Fortunately, there are ways to work out from the comfort of your home without any high-tech equipment.

Burpees are always brutal! While a home workout can’t replace an intense bodybuilding or group fitness session there are plenty of ways to work up a sweat in your back yard or living room.

You don’t need a gym to be fit, there are other ways to keep fit and almost there are some great innovative ways to do it at home or in your backyard. For the most bang for your buck, the burpee is the best. No matter where you are in the fitness spectrum, there aren’t many things that are so simple but have such a profound full-body impact as a burpee.

You don’t have to do 100 of them first thing in the morning, either (although that’s what Navy SEAL Jocko Willink recommends at 5 am). Starting with a set of burpees will be challenging but is doable for you based on your fitness level.  15 or 20 is a good starting point. Then, follow it up with the same number of push-ups, squats, and mountain climbers. Repeat several times for an easy total body workout.

If you’re really looking for a challenge, consider CrossFit athlete Jeff Germond’s go-to, which is either 100 or 150 burpees for time. But don’t forget other body-weight moves like push-ups and squats

If you hate burpees or just want some variety, other bodyweight movements can work other areas of the body, and offer varying degrees of difficulty.

Air squats, for example, can be done just about anywhere and by anyone. Those, along with mountain climbers, lunges, push-ups (or variations to make them easier or harder) are the basic bodyweight exercise to combine into various workouts.

Just combining those basic movements, one after another, can be a quick effective home workout.

For more of a challenge add an isometric hold as part of the movements – at the bottom of a squat or lunge, hold that position to push your muscles to work harder. You can also add a tempo to squats or lunges by lowering down into your squat over 3 or 5 seconds and then moving back up with speed. This can help make simple movement more challenging but remember it’s time under tension which is your goal so remember to maintain great form.

And if you’re worried about missing out on cardio, add a jump to the top of movements like squats or lunges to kick your heart rate into high gear. Those explosive, plyometric variation, especially when combined with a circuit of other exercises, can give you a good workout even without a lot of time or space, Goldberg said.

For example, instead of regular squats, do a set of 15 jump squats. Follow that with a set of 10 regular squats and finally, lower yourself into a squat and hold that position for 15 to 30 seconds as a feel-the-burn finisher. Repeat a few times for a full workout.

It’s not necessary to put your body through an intense marathon on your balcony as we’ve seen some people on the news,   as long as you’re moving and doing something that gets your heart rate elevated consistently for a reasonable amount of time, you’ll make progress.

You don’t need anything but your body weight to exercise, but if you do want to add variety, a few common things around the house can help keep you busy until you can get back to the gym.

A chair can be used to work your upper body with tricep dips, placing your hands behind you on the chair, walking your feet out in front, and slowly bending your elbows to slow down and back up.

If you do like lifting weights, consider using a broomstick in place of a barbell to practice movements like overhead squats. It may be less challenging than a full weighted barbell, but it can help you perfect your form and keep mobile until you can get back to the gym.

If you do want a little weight and you don’t have any free-weights using something you have around the home that has a reasonable amount of weight and doing them strict, slow can really have an impact. Lunges, shoulder presses, weighted sit-ups are some of the most popular exercises.

Even if you’re doing a home gym session, though, it’s important to practice good health and recover habits to avoid getting sick or worn out. Wash your hands regularly, and stay hydrated, Using COVID 19 to get into a great routine is a great way to improve your overall health and exercise outputs, but remember to practice healthy hygiene. Don’t underestimate the importance of sleep and good nutrition.

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