Maintaining fitness while the gym’s closed
The gains don’t stop, coronavirus or no coronavirus. But the gyms have been closed for weeks. Sitting at home, with all the temptations of the fridge, the TV, and a lot of stress/boredom induced drinking, can be a lot to overcome when you’re trying to keep up your fitness regimen. It helps that we’re still allowed to go outside for exercise and spring weather has officially kicked in. But finding motivation can be a challenge when there are no social events to look forward to or people cheering you on and keeping you going during a workout class. If you don’t want your friends to see how out of shape you’ve gotten, you can just tilt your webcam. For those who want to maintain or improve their fitness despite not leaving the house, here are some proven solutions to help make that happen.
Adriene Mishler was already a YouTube star with more than 5 million followers before shelter at home measures took effect throughout the country. But her welcoming approach to yoga for beginners or more seasoned practitioners, her adorable dog Benji, and her release of timely themed videos (Yoga for Vulnerability, anyone?) during the pandemic have won her more loyalists and provided moments of needed relaxation along with a good workout.
The fitness regimen is more of a lifestyle, and the CrossFit community has been supporting its local boxes (special gyms with lots of free weights, pull-up bars, and open space geared toward CrossFit workouts) with a fundraiser that doubles as a fitness challenge. Three classic workouts designed for any ability level were made available online in April, with participants able to organize leaderboards to keep up a friendly competition and donations welcome. Individual boxes have been hosting daily zoom classes and customizing workouts for those with and without equipment. Many boxes have allowed members to check out equipment like a fitness library, and famous CrossFitters have been posting free workouts to Instagram.
Normally, classes involve treadmills, rowing machines, and free weights, but the high-intensity interval training platform has been posting daily at home workouts that require minimal equipment and maximize bodyweight training and cardio. Videos have also demonstrated how people can use commonly found household objects as weights. Might as well put those suitcases to use somehow if you can’t go on that vacation you planned.
The home fitness studio in a screen was ahead of its time. Now that everyone is in the same boat of not being able to get to the gym, demand is sky-high. “Sales have more than doubled since the advent of Covid-19,” CEO Brynn Jinnett Putnam told CNN Business on April 1. Those numbers have only gone up since, with more than 95% of the US under shelter at home orders for at least parts of March and April. Instructors are still conducting live classes in more than 20 fitness genres, even meditation to help mental health.
After a, let’s say poorly received, holiday commercial, Peloton in March began offering a 90-day free trial of workouts via its app. Even without the expensive bike, home fitness enthusiasts can take online yoga, HIIT, and strength classes. The platform has gained a following among professional athletes in self-isolation, with the Golden State Warriors even taking group rides. Peloton did have to suspend live classes for the rest of April after an employee in its New York studio tested positive for Covid-19 on April 6 but is still offering prerecorded classes.
Workouts range from 15 to 55 minutes and cover a wide range of exercise types. More than 800 classes are available through Les Mills On Demand. A lot of them can be done using body weight only, without the need for free weights. The company made its on demand product available to fitness clubs, instructors, and schools free of charge in March. “Big challenges call for bold solutions,” CEO Clive Ormerod said. “So we’re opening up LMOD to support our club partners and schools in keeping the world moving. We all know exercise is the cornerstone of a healthy immune system, so the fitness industry has a major role to play in helping to keep people fighting fit in the face of coronavirus.”
How hot you keep your home studio is up to you, but free live classes are broadcast three times a day, most with a combination of sculpting and meditation to keep the whole body-mind structure in shape. On demand subscriptions are available for $19.99 per month, and the company offers a tutorial in setting the right atmosphere for at-home workouts. They’ve also teamed with family focused Growga to offer twice weekly classes designed for kids and adults.
The smart mat rolls itself up when you’re finished and pairs with Amazon Alexa and Women’s Health Yoga. The mats are grippier, longer, and provide more cushioning than traditional yoga mats and snap themselves tight at the corners to ensure comfort no matter the surface underneath. Alexa can walk you through an entire yoga class, and the mat will basically store itself after. Who thought working out could be so easy?