One of the downsides of the lockdowns still in place to combat the COVID-19 pandemic is that gyms are largely closed or at reduced capacity. If you’re still not comfortable with going to a gym right now, you’re not alone. If you’re looking for some ways to get moving at home, these ideas can help you break a sweat without ever going to the gym.
Do Some Landscaping Work
Instead of hiring someone to do your landscaping work, get out there and break a sweat while you do it. A few things that any beginner can do while gardening include weeding a garden bed, cutting the lawn, or planting annual flowers. These small tasks not only can really help to spruce up your yard and up your curb appeal, but they also can be a real workout depending on how long it’s been since you last did some garden maintenance. Some tasks that may make for heavier lifting include digging up grass to make a new garden bed, mulching your garden, or planting something that you have to dig a large hole for, such as a bigger shrub or tree.
You can also add some decor to your yard in the form of a patio or a fence. If you’re installing a fence, a vinyl fence is a stronger option than wood and can therefore last longer, so it’s a better investment. Installing your own patio can be difficult if you don’t have experience in properly leveling an area, but adding to a patio with things like outdoor furniture or by building a pergola can break a sweat and add some value to your home.
Rearrange the Furniture
If you’re looking for some non-traditional strength training, rearranging the furniture in your home can be a great way to test your strength and refresh where you’re living. Before you start haphazardly moving furniture, think about the exact layout you want and plan out what needs to be moved when to make things work. Sometimes you have to be strategic about the way that you move things and act like a sort of in-real-life version of Tetris to get everything moved where you want it to be.
Painting a room can be a form of physical exercise depending on what room you’re painting and how involved the painting process is. Between taping up a room, climbing on and off of ladders or step stools to reach higher up places, and the pressure of pressing a paint roller into a wall to get an even coating of paint, the process can cause you to break a sweat. And if you end up buying too much paint, you can use the extra can as a weight for future at-home workouts. A can of paint can last three to five years when it’s properly stored, so there’s no reason not to use it in place of something like a kettlebell in the time between now and when gyms are open again.
Walk When You’re on the Phone
Any time that you’re on a non-video call, try walking around your home. You can find a specific loop to walk or even just pace back and forth in your office space. With the amount of time that we’re all spending talking and communicating with our jobs going virtual, you have the chance to get in quite a few steps. Even if you’re not on the phone, any time that you’re feeling you need to move you can get up and pace or walk around your home for a minute or two to get moving.
Ten Minute Tidy
If you want to do something quickly without really committing to a full-on deep clean, a 10-minute clean-up can be a great way to get moving and tidy up without spending too much time on it. Pick one task that will take around 10 minutes to get done, like putting away laundry, wiping down your kitchen, or dusting a room, and just do it. Depending on the task, it might take more or less physical effort, but no matter what it’s a good use of time.
Dance It Off
Dancing is a great way to move your body and just have fun. Create a playlist full of all the songs that you can’t help but dance to and throw it on whenever you feel like you need a few minutes of dancing like no one is watching. If you live with someone else that loves dancing, rope them into your impromptu (or scheduled) dance parties wherever you can.
Move During Commercial Breaks
If you’re watching someone on TV or a streaming service that has ads, take the commercial breaks as an opportunity to break a sweat. You can do basic calisthenics during commercial breaks, like lunges, jumping jacks, planks, squats, or push-ups. Create a quick circuit that you can do in the few minutes that a commercial break will last and try to do the circuit a few times a day to help get your heart rate up during a time when you normally wouldn’t.
Know When to Rest
Although it can be fun to find ways to move more while you’re at home, it’s important to take a break and rest when you need it. If you’re feeling sore or have a fever, which on average will range from 100.4 degrees to 104 degrees Fahrenheit, it’s a good idea to take the day off to let your body recover. Exercising or pushing it when you aren’t feeling well will only hurt you in the long run, so make sure that you’re listening to your body’s cues. The pandemic is placing a lot of stress on everyone, and your body can feel the toll of it even if you don’t notice it at first.
Although COVID-19 has closed many gyms and made traditional forms of exercise less accessible, it hasn’t completely taken away the possibility of moving your body and breaking a sweat. Try these ideas to get moving around your home without placing yourself or anyone in your bubble at risk while still being able to maintain your fitness during the pandemic.