Here are 5 tips to help you get the most out of indoor exercise
So you’ve read the 5 benefits of indoor exercise and you’ve bought in to the idea that it’s worth doing exercise even if you’re cooped up indoors.
But how do you actually exploit those benefits in your own life? Here are 5 ways you can make the most of your indoor exercise.
Keep it regular, keep it frequent
This is the absolute key to making indoor exercise at home work for you. Keep yourself from sitting down for too long, introduce a bit of silliness to your day and raise your heartrate, work up a bit of sweat.
Getting your indoor exercise in several bursts a day is going to serve you well.
This is true even if you don’t actually do a lot of exercise. If you’re moving about regularly, then you are not sitting down. And these days we understand that sitting down for very long periods is bad for your health (asdf insert link).
Right now, it can also really help your mental health too, especially with the number of challenges and reenactments, etc, around the place to help you get your laughs.
Movement + fun, a winning combination.
Try to work on all 4 types of fitness
For all round health, it’s important to work on all 4 types of fitness. This holds true wherever you exercise. For flexibility, there’s yoga. For a combination of strength and flexibility, you can do Pilates. To work on strength in more detail, do some resistance exercises with body weight and resistance bands. For aerobics fitness, there’s dance-based exercise, Zumba, skipping, and step work (if you can mock up a step).
Don’t set your expectations too high
I think this is where we give indoor exercise a bad name. You’re not going to turn into a record-breaking marathon runner doing a bit of Zumba. You’re not going to lose 20 kilos and learn to bench-press twice your bodyweight.
The actual physical gains you’ll see from indoor exercise will be quite modest in the short term, especially when it comes to aerobic and strength exercise. But the point is that as long as you are doing it, there will be a gain and there won’t be a loss. Please don’t abandon it because it doesn’t feel like you’re getting results, because you are. Not all gains can be measured in inches per week.
Use it as a chance to connect
It doesn’t matter so much what kind of connection you’re making, as long as you’re making a connection. You can join a Zoom session, post on social media, join a challenge or WhatsApp your mates. It doesn’t matter. Try to build some connection into your exercise sessions.
Put your own needs first
Make the session about you and what you want to get out of your exercise. This is a great chance to slow down and not worry about what other people might think. Focus on form, on doing exercise deliberately. Think about what each exercise is for and try to get the most out of it. Getting too much? Stop for a while. Go back, repeat.
Work as you need to, not to someone else’s timetable.
The best kind of exercise is the regular kind
With these tips, you can get the most out of indoor exercise both now and well into the future.
If you build a habit now, it will stand you in good stead through bad times and good.
Try to remember that, while we live in extraordinary times, those too will pass.
Sooner or later the world will change again and we’ll start to look forward.
Right now, our main job is to stay as healthy as we can. But you’re allowed to hope - and you’re allowed to plan for the future.
Take care. Stay well.