The 5 Best Home Workouts (That Really Work)
Is your gym shut because of coronavirus? Or do you simply want to workout without the hassle of leaving the house?
We’ve assembled some of the best home workouts to improve your fitness, tried and tested by our team. Believe us...these are going to make you sweat!
If you’re looking for home workouts because of the coronavirus, make sure you also check out our guide to Staying Fit and Healthy During a Pandemic.
Whether you’re looking for HIIT, core, upper body, or a quickie before work, we’ve got you covered.
**SCROLL DOWN FOR HOME WORKOUTS**
None of these workouts require equipment - apart from a mat, unless you are happy to exercise on the floor.
To increase the difficulty of some of the fitness routines, you may wish to add weight to the activities. In which case, you don’t need kettlebells or dumbbells, you can improvise with what you have around the house (we used a tub of lentils)!
Is it Effective to Workout at Home?
Yes! Home workouts can be just as effective as those at the gym, as long as you are focused and take them seriously!
Like most things, preparation is key!
Warmups may not help you hit those fitness goals but they do prep you for exercise and they are an important part of every workout. Here are 4 reasons why you should perform a warmup before starting your activity:
1. Warmups increase your body temperature
Ever noticed how stiff you get when it’s cold? If your body is not properly warmed up, your muscles tense and seize up, which makes any strenuous activity more difficult and increases your chance of injury.
Performing a warmup exercise before your home workout will increase your muscle temperature and subsequently improve oxygen flow, enabling better muscle contraction and relaxation.
2. Warmups decrease the likelihood of injury
An injury is the most frustrating thing when you’re trying to achieve your fitness goals, especially if you’ve got it because you didn’t do a warmup before your home workout.
A warmup will help you to gradually increase the strain on your body and will help your muscles to relax, ready for those push-ups!
3. Warmups improve your range of motion
Even home workouts put pressure on your joints and, if you don’t do a warmup first, you could cause yourself harm. By stretching and properly warming up, you will lubricate your joints and ensure that you are performing safely at your full range of motion.
4. Warmups help you prepare mentally
Our minds are incredibly powerful and to really benefit from these fitness workouts we must be fully focused. Preparing yourself by performing warmup exercises beforehand will help you to switch on mentally and engage all of the relevant muscle groups.
Here’s a great warmup exercise from Shona Vertue, certified personal trainer and yoga teacher:
And now...the best home workouts!
The Best Home HIIT Workout
Why do HIIT?
HIIT (high-intensity interval training) workouts are great for elevating your heart rate and making you sweat. They’re a pretty intense form of cardio but they are a fantastic way to burn fat and build some muscle.
The key to HIIT workouts is their intensity, so you have to work very hard in a short space of time. This makes them great workouts for those who plan to get really fit in a short period of time!
HIIT workouts are intense! Make sure you properly fuel your body with the right micro- and macronutrients, including protein. For more information, check out our Guide to Plant-Based Protein here!
Trainer: Natacha Océane
Duration: 20 minutes
The Best Home Booty Workout
Why do this booty workout?
The glutes are the biggest muscle group in the body and support a whole host of exercises and compound movements. They work hard to stabilize other body parts and help us to avoid muscle imbalances, which prevents injuries and lowers the likelihood of back pain.
Unfortunately, the modern lifestyle is having a negative impact on our glutes and common activities, such as sitting at a desk, driving, and watching TV on the sofa, weaken them. Therefore, booty workouts are rightly becoming increasingly popular. Plus, they make bums nice and perky!
Trainer: Shona Vertue
Duration: 15 minutes
The Best Home Workout for Beginners
Why do this workout for beginners?
Exercise should be sustainable and suitable for your current level of fitness. We can’t stress this enough! There’s no point in hitting the exercise hard if you’re just going to give up after 2 sessions. What’s more, if you’re a beginner, then performing advanced workouts straightaway increases your risk of injury.
Beginner workouts are great for getting you into the habit of doing exercise and will help you to learn basic moves that focus on different muscle groups and aren’t too complicated to perform.
Trainer: Pamela Reif
Duration: 20 minutes (warmup and cooldown included)
The Best Home Core Workout
Why focus on your core?
According to Stuart McGill, PhD, “The well-trained core is essential for optimal performance and injury prevention”. It’s at the center of everything we do and a strong core will improve your balance, coordination, stability, and posture.
Trainer: Maddie Lymburner
Duration: 15 minutes
The Best Home Upper Body Workout
Why focus on your upper body?
Our upper bodies help us to perform everyday movements, such as pushing, pulling, grasping, and rotating. Working on areas, such as your shoulders, chest, arms, and upper back, will improve your performance of these functions and benefit your posture.
Trainer: Chris Heria
Duration: 10 minutes
Equipment: Home furniture and a wall (maybe a mat)
Phew - it’s Time to Cool Down!
We know it’s tempting, but please don’t skip your cool down. This should consist of gentle stretches and/or movements as well as regulating your breathing. An effective cool down will lower your heart rate and allow your body to return to normal, as well as promoting the recovery stage. A cool down is essential to increasing your fitness safely and will help you to reach those goals quicker!
Make sure you have some great recovery food ready for after your workout, check out our list of pre- and post-workout macro-friendly snacks.