The rain has returned and now comes the challenge of maintaining your “summer bod” with indoor workouts. Your tan may fade, but your determination to stay healthy will not! If you’re an outdoor workout fanatic, we think you’ll find it surprisingly easy and motivating to stay fit indoors. Here are four ways we love to stay in shape during the cold weather months. And you’ll love the added bonus of those exercise based endorphins!
Get a gym buddy
Going to the gym is a no-brainer workout option and can be done at any time of year. But if you’re really determined to stay in shape and continue that great momentum you have from summer then consider going to a gym with a friend. People are social and like most things, exercise is better with a companion. There is a healthy competitive spirit and sense of cooperation when you can work with someone else. Staying fit does not require a partner, but having a gym buddy keeps the average person more dedicated and accountable. Try running on treadmills next to each other or being a spotter while the other bench presses. You’ll be amazed at the number of extra reps you can accomplish when someone is spotting you! Gyms are pretty much on every street corner nowadays – and some are even open 24 hours a day! Many shared office spaces and apartment buildings have small but functional gyms. The dreary rain is no excuse for not staying in shape!
Pop in those home workout videos
Embrace the cringe, channel your inner Richard Simmons. Cliche as workout videos may seem, they are an effective means of working out and are great for indoors, especially if you love the privacy of your own home. Sure you may look uncoordinated doing V-ups and butt-busters, but that’s part of the charm of a workout video! You get to play monkey-see monkey-do with an energetic instructor while upbeat music plays in the background. Workout videos will make you sore in places you didn’t even know you had muscles, and the result will be a stronger, toned physique.
These sessions are conducive to being alone and going at your own pace. Embrace the silliness of the routine and just do it. Such videos exist for a reason and are just as effective at getting you in shape as any other method. Pop in that DVD or, heaven forbid, that old VHS copy of a workout video you purchased long ago. The workouts may be cheesy but the exercise is intense and the results are real.
Do your desk exercises
Yes, it is possible, office jockeys, to workout at work. Try doing jumping jacks for a minute. Do some simple stretching exercises at your desk. If you can steal an empty conference room, do some lunges. Walk up the stairs two at a time. And we know you can’t say no to a good ol’ wall sit.
An important factor in cardiovascular health is heart rate variability, or your heart’s ability to jump from “resting” to “racing”. Heart rate variability is a strong indicator of improved cardiovascular health as you age. Simulate jumping rope for a minute, alternating the foot you jump off. If you find yourself unfocused for a couple minutes, use that time to do a light exercise. Your future self will thank you for the effort – all exercise is cumulative. WebMD has a great list of exercises to try at your desk.
Try different fitness classes
Exercise does not have to be work; it can be cleverly disguised as something fun. Cycling, Zumba, boxing, weightlifting, bar classes, etc., are all examples of indoor workouts that are fun and challenging. Programs such as ClassPass are a great way to add variety to your fitness routine. ClassPass gives you multiple passes per week to dozens of gyms in your area. If you’re someone who feels easily stuck in a rut doing the same workout over and over, this is definitely something to look into. Sometimes all you need to boost your motivation is a change of scenery (or maybe even some new workout clothes).