At Home Workouts and Gym Free Ideas
At least once a week, one of my friends either posts something on Facebook about going to the gym, or asks me if I want to go along for a workout. I’m one of those who thinks that I don’t need to work out – but, I’ve been getting fit in a natural way!
Getting into shape or keeping in shape is one of the best favors you can do for your body. I have to admit, in the winter, I tend to get soft. I have all the excuses: it’s too cold, it’s dark out, I don’t have the time, I’m tired, I have to do this or that, etc. None of them are really good excuses.
I can take 30 minutes a day and do something… anything! So can you.
Alternatives to Working Out in a Gym
I really hate going to the gym. I’m not a germaphobe or anything like that, I just don’t want to take the time to drive there or to pay the fees for something I can do myself. Here are a few great workout ideas if you want to avoid gyms:
Find a good tall set of stairs – maybe at the mall, a local school, stadium, or another tall building. I’m lucky to live near The Blue Ridge Parkway. Along the Parkway is The Mountain To Sea Trail. In some places it climbs several hundred feet in a short space. Now that is a real workout, and not as monotonous as using a stair climber in the gym.
Any flat surface will do for a run. I live next door to a community pool and the parking lot isn’t used much in the spring, fall and winter, so I use it for a short track. A church parking lot, local school gym, or parking lot at an office building (after hours) will work too. Just be safe about where you go.
Alternative to a Treadmill With Varying Speeds & Slopes
For a workout that includes a treadmill at an angle and varying speeds, find a nice nature trail. We have quite a few nearby, including one along the Swannanoa River that is very similar to a varying degree treadmill workout.
The following suggestion is an alternative to butterflies, or swinging your arms with weights. Contact a local farmer to help with hay bales. There’s no better workout for the arms than hauling hay. It’s a consistent weight and easy enough to start with.
Improvised Squats With Weights
Rearrange your attic/storage area. When you squat to pick up a box, keep your back straight and your load close. Lift with your legs to reduce chances of injuring your back.
Alternative to Push ups
This is close to push ups while you are standing – mow the lawn with a reel mower. The action of pushing against the mower will simulate what you do while doing push ups. Alternatively, you can lean against a wall with your hands and push out. This method is much easier on your back since you are not parallel to the floor.
Modified Sit ups
Stand straight up and reach down to pick something up without bending your knees. At first you may not be able to go very far, but after a few repetitions, you should be able to touch the floor. Again, because you’re not lying down, this should be easier on your back.
While the hot tub isn’t actually part of the work out, it’s often a fun part of going to the gym. Enjoy this same treatment at home by filling a tub full of warm water. (Don’t get it too hot.) Add a handful of Epsom salts or a bath fizzy with Epsom salts. Let this dissolve in the water, then gently lower yourself into it. Stay for at least 15 minutes, or until you skin gets wrinkled. This is the point at which the magnesium from the Epsom salts is absorbed into your body. Magnesium allows for muscle relaxation, so it’s almost like getting a massage too!
There are many other ways you can get exercise without going to a gym. What are your favorites?