Here’s how you can stay healthy & in shape at home while fitness centres are closed!

The COVID-19 pandemic has meant millions of people around the world are adjusting to life indoors. Last week, Premier Doug Ford urged that people should not gather in groups larger than 50 people for the next 8 weeks to reduce the spread of the virus. As such, Heart Niagara made the decision to temporarily cancel all HeartCORE appointments & fitness classes to protect the community that we serve. Many gyms have also closed their doors. However, just because your workout class or fitness centre might be temporarily shut down, that doesn’t mean you should stop sweating. In fact, working out might be one of the best ways you can pass the time while you’re self-quarantined & we encourage everyone to take this time to exercise at home! Besides the health benefits of exercising, it’s also good to stay active to ward off going stir crazy from being cooped up at home for an extended period of time. Exercising will also help to counteract the escalation of stress & anxiety that many people may be experiencing  during this time! 

Good news is, you don’t have to own any equipment to get in a good workout at home. There’s a lot you can do that requires no equipment or you can use simple things around your house in replacement of the equipment you use at the gym. Here are some helpful recommendations to exercising at home: 

  • An effective exercise program should always have the following 5 components: 1) A Warmup, 2) A Cardiovascular (aerobic) workout, 3) Resistance or weights (muscle/strength-building) exercises, 4) Flexibility moves, and 5) A Cooldown
  • Focus on the basics such as planks, pushups, squats, leg lifts, burpees, jumping jacks, lunges, sit-ups, and so forth, for an easy workout that will build strength and get your heart pumping. Choose a variety of exercises that target different areas of your body for a moderate to vigorous full-body workout that is at least 30 minutes long 
  • A great way to build a workout is to do 5 rounds of 5-10 different exercises for 60 seconds of work, followed by 15 seconds of rest. Be sure your strength workout covers all major muscle groups, in your upper body, lower body, abdominals and back. Shoot for three sets of 10-15 repetitions of each strength exercise.
  • For people looking for more guidance during their at-home exercise, there are plenty of tutorials and virtual workouts available online, whether on YouTube or other portals. Check out these great home workout streaming services: https://www.cnbc.com/2020/03/16/best-home-workout-streaming-services-to-try-during-covid-19-pandemic.html
  • Challenge yourself, set realistic goals and avoid boredom. At home, you won’t have the variety of equipment, classes, and guidance that are available to you at the gym. So surf the Internet and browse fitness magazines to check out new workouts and make sure you’re exercising correctly. Pictures and videos are everything. Use them as a guide for form and technique. 
  • Schedule your workouts daily – ALWAYS HAVE A PLAN – so that you won’t make any excuses to skip your workout 
  • Use a journal to track your progress 
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