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10 Simple Ways to Get Incredible Fitness Results … AT HOME!

10 Simple Ways to Get Incredible Fitness Results … AT HOME!

As it has been said, our home is our castle. It’s one of the few places we truly feel comfortable; so why not exercise there? Because many people don’t have time to go to the gym, are intimidated by the gym (some people scream really loud when lifting…scary), or don’t want to wait on equipment (you know that guy that does like 15 sets per piece of equipment…yeah that guy) almost 67% of gym memberships are never used! Working out at home doesn’t sound like a bad option!

From demolishing calories to shredding fat, you can get the results you want from your living room! Below are 10 of the easiest, most simple ways for beginners to start making their castle into their very own gym and get incredible fitness results along the way!

1. Body-weight Exercise For Starters

“Man, working out at home sounds fun and all but who can afford all of that equipment?”

I’m here to tell you that one of the best tools you have at your disposal is yourself! Bodyweight training is all the rage nowadays because it focuses on increasing your functional strength through movements like squats, pushups, pull-ups, dips, planks, etc. This functional strength is the strength you need to perform daily tasks in your life and this form of training can be just as effective (with all other things considered) as traditional weight-lifting at a gym! Save yourself time and money and get to those push-ups!

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2. After-burn Train

“Great, so I’m getting stronger but I NEED to do cardio; aka I need a treadmill. There’s no way I’m running outsides, it’s freezing!”

The answer is after-burn or commonly referred to as EPOC (Excess Post-Exercise Oxygen Consumption) training. Basically, if you strength train at a high-intensity (70-75% of your VO2) for an extended period of time (at least 30 minutes) your body requires more oxygen and therefore calories after your workout to return it to its normal resting state. In fact, you can burn extra calories over 38 hours after your workout is over still due to that workout—that’s insane. You could be burning calories still from your workout the NEXT night while sitting on the couch watching Big Bang Theory re-runs! [Note: For a more detailed EPOC training guideline click HERE.]

3. Keep It Simple, Stupid

“But dude, I need all of that equipment at the gym and I need someone to help time my rest sets!”

Dude, no you don’t! Making your home your gym is all about being convenient and making it as easy and pain-free as possible! You don’t need complex rest or working sets that only Einstein would understand (because we all know that Einstein was big into lifting). The best thing to do is to keep it simple. In fact, a simple workout (with normal resting sets) when performed at a high intensity is just as effective as some complex workout that you put together from 3 weight lifting magazines, 2 online resources, and the advice of your brother-in-law who lifts a lot. The best bet is to keep your workout simple in order to help you remember it, make it more convenient, and make it more likely for you to perform!

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4. Short Bursts of Exercise Create Huge Results

 “Listen here fella; I have no time to go to the gym now, why would I have time at home?”

Great question and the answer is twofold. First, you will save time not going to and from the gym, save time not at your “gym social hour,” and save time not getting ready because you can basically exercise at home in whatever you want (from pajamas to work boots)! Another thing that is important to remember is that time you save doing all the things can be put towards exercise; even if it’s only 10–15 minutes! Everyone thinks that you need to exercise an hour a day to see great results but a recent study found that those that exercised just 8.5 minutes a day received the SAME cardiovascular benefits as those that exercised 25 minutes a day! That’s incredible! The point is not to exercise less; the point is that you now have the time no matter if its 10 minutes to still help improve your health!

5. Keep Your Workouts Fun

“Yep…nothing says fun like sweating profusely while trying to catch my breath for 25 minutes all while thinking I’m going to die…sure sounds fun!”

Exercise doesn’t have to be running at full sprint for 5 minutes or even doing lunges until you have to crawl to your car. Exercise can be fun and if you can make it fun at home, you are more likely to do it more often and ACTUALLY more likely to eat less afterwards! The next time you need to get some “cardio” in, don’t rush to the gym to wait 35 minutes to get on a machine then power walk for 25 minutes. Instead, go outside and take a hike; literally! Research has shown that when you have fun while performing the exercise you aren’t as likely to reward yourself with junk food afterwards!

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6. Walk Your Way to Better Health

“Well sorry to break it to you, but I’m way out of shape and there is no way I can perform super high-intensity exercise!”

No worries! Do what you can when it comes to high-intensity exercise. Until then, start briskly walking to increase your exercise capacity! Yup—walking. Walking is ideal for helping sedentary individuals build up their exercise capacity so they can move on to more intense exercise! In fact, for the obese (or beginners), walking is  great way to burn calories at a lower heart rate and actually burn calories faster than cycling and even jogging in some instances! If you need to make your walks even more difficult, carry 2 pounds dumbbells with you or punch the air while walking like you are Rocky training for Apollo Creed!

7. Persistence Pays Off

“I go to the gym now whenever I feel like it and haven’t seen results, how can I at home then?” “You can’t just go randomly and expect results…“ “I went 3 Fridays ago, why don’t I have a six pack?”

It’s all about persistence. One of the top ways to get in shape is to stay active and exercise on a persistent basis! One of the biggest factors science has found that determines your cardiovascular and overall health is persistent exercise. It doesn’t matter if you workout less than 10 minutes a day or over 30 minutes, as long as you are exercising on a persistent basis then you will get some great results! Make sure to stay active every day, no matter if it is your workout day!

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8. Stick to the Bare Essentials

“Blah, blah, blah…I’m tired of bodyweight exercises and there is no way I can get a great workout without a ton of equipment!”

Besides your own body the only other equipment that is needed for starting out is a couple dumbbells (5–10lbs) and an exercise mat (or even a towel). That is literally it! You can get a killer workout with just these bare essentials! By exercising at a high-intensity while performing your workout in a circuit like set, you can build muscle, burn calories, and induce the EPOC effect! [Note: circuits are strength training exercises performed at a high intensity where you move from one exercise to another very quickly with little to no rest between sets while performing exercises that work the entire body.]

9. Accountability

“Even if I do start working out at home, there is less accountability there and I’m more likely to not exercise at all!”

I totally understand that! That’s why you need to set up 2–3 fail safes in order to make sure you stick to your at-home workout! Science has shown that the more fail safes you have in place the better prepared you will be. First and foremost have a friend or your spouse keep you accountable! Accountability is one of the biggest motivators to actually workout! Have them check in on you from time to time to make sure you still are crushing your at-home fitness goals! One phone call a week is enough to do just that.

10. Strength Training is a MUST

“Well I hate to lift weights, I have no idea what I’m doing. It can’t be that important!”

Sorry my friend! If you take anything away from this, remember to start strength training. No, it’s not about getting huge ripped muscles that make you look bigger than the Hulk trying to deal with his enormous rage issues (which you can achieve if that’s what you want). For many of us it is about burning calories, building muscle, relieving stress, improving your cardiovascular health, and even improving your bone strength! Strength training can do all of that and more! You won’t get “bulky,” you will get healthy, so start lifting today!

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Last Updated on September 18, 2020

7 Simple Rules to Live by to Get in Shape in Two Weeks

7 Simple Rules to Live by to Get in Shape in Two Weeks

Learning how to get in shape and set goals is important if you’re looking to live a healthier lifestyle and get closer to your goal weight. While this does require changes to your daily routine, you’ll find that you are able to look and feel better in only two weeks.

Over the years, I’ve learned a lot about what it takes to get in shape. Although anyone can cover the basics (eat right and exercise), there are some things that I could only learn through trial and error. Let’s cover some of the most important points for how to get in shape in two weeks.

1. Exercise Daily

It is far easier to make exercise a habit if it is a daily one. If you aren’t exercising at all, I recommend starting by exercising a half hour every day. When you only exercise a couple times per week, it is much easier to turn one day off into three days off, a week off, or a month off.

If you are already used to exercising, switching to three or four times a week to fit your schedule may be preferable, but it is a lot harder to maintain a workout program you don’t do every day.

Be careful to not repeat the same exercise routine each day. If you do an intense ab workout one day, try switching it up to general cardio the next. You can also squeeze in a day of light walking to break up the intensity.

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If you’re a morning person, check out these morning exercises that will start your day off right.

2. Duration Doesn’t Substitute for Intensity

Once you get into the habit of regular exercise, where do you go if you still aren’t reaching your goals? Most people will solve the problem by exercising for longer periods of time, turning forty-minute workouts into two hour stretches. Not only does this drain your time, but it doesn’t work particularly well.

One study shows that “exercising for a whole hour instead of a half does not provide any additional loss in either body weight or fat”[1].

This is great news for both your schedule and your levels of motivation. You’ll likely find it much easier to exercise for 30 minutes a day instead of an hour. In those 30 minutes, do your best to up the intensity to your appropriate edge to get the most out of the time.

3. Acknowledge Your Limits

Many people get frustrated when they plateau in their weight loss or muscle gaining goals as they’re learning how to get in shape. Everyone has an equilibrium and genetic set point where their body wants to remain. This doesn’t mean that you can’t achieve your fitness goals, but don’t be too hard on yourself if you are struggling to lose weight or put on muscle.

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Acknowledging a set point doesn’t mean giving up, but it does mean realizing the obstacles you face.

Expect to hit a plateau in your own fitness results[2]. When you expect a plateau, you can manage around it so you can continue your progress at a more realistic rate. When expectations meet reality, you can avoid dietary crashes.

4. Eat Healthy, Not Just Food That Looks Healthy

Know what you eat. Don’t fuss over minutia like whether you’re getting enough Omega 3’s or tryptophan, but be aware of the big things. Look at the foods you eat regularly and figure out whether they are healthy or not. Don’t get fooled by the deceptively healthy snacks just pretending to be good for you.

The basic nutritional advice includes:

  • Eat unprocessed foods
  • Eat more veggies
  • Use meat as a side dish, not a main course
  • Eat whole grains, not refined grains[3]

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Eat whole grains when you want to learn how to get in shape.

    5. Watch Out for Travel

    Don’t let a four-day holiday interfere with your attempts when you’re learning how to get in shape. I don’t mean that you need to follow your diet and exercise plan without any excursion, but when you are in the first few weeks, still forming habits, be careful that a week long break doesn’t terminate your progress.

    This is also true of schedule changes that leave you suddenly busy or make it difficult to exercise. Have a backup plan so you can be consistent, at least for the first month when you are forming habits.

    If travel is on your schedule and can’t be avoided, make an exercise plan before you go[4], and make sure to pack exercise clothes and an exercise mat as motivation to keep you on track.

    6. Start Slow

    Ever start an exercise plan by running ten miles and then puking your guts out? Maybe you aren’t that extreme, but burnout is common early on when learning how to get in shape. You have a lifetime to be healthy, so don’t try to go from couch potato to athletic superstar in a week.

    If you are starting a running regime, for example, run less than you can to start. Starting strength training? Work with less weight than you could theoretically lift. Increasing intensity and pushing yourself can come later when your body becomes comfortable with regular exercise.

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    7. Be Careful When Choosing a Workout Partner

    Should you have a workout partner? That depends. Workout partners can help you stay motivated and make exercising more fun. But they can also stop you from reaching your goals.

    My suggestion would be to have a workout partner, but when you start to plateau (either in physical ability, weight loss/gain, or overall health) and you haven’t reached your goals, consider mixing things up a bit.

    If you plateau, you may need to make changes to continue improving. In this case it’s important to talk to your workout partner about the changes you want to make, and if they don’t seem motivated to continue, offer a thirty day break where you both try different activities.

    I notice that guys working out together tend to match strength after a brief adjustment phase. Even if both are trying to improve, something seems to stall improvement once they reach a certain point. I found that I was able to lift as much as 30-50% more after taking a short break from my regular workout partner.

    Final Thoughts

    Learning how to get in shape in as little as two weeks sounds daunting, but if you’re motivated and have the time and energy to devote to it, it’s certainly possible.

    Find an exercise routine that works for you, eat healthy, drink lots of water, and watch as the transformation begins.

    More Tips on Getting in Shape

    Featured photo credit: Alexander Redl via unsplash.com

    Reference

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