I’ve never been a big fan of going to the gym. I do, however, enjoy working out and staying active. I came to the realization that I just preferred to work out outdoors or in my home as opposed to working out at the gym. Whenever I went to the gym, I would walk straight to the treadmill or the elliptical and only focus on cardio. I was intimidated by weightlifting and had no idea what I was doing so I stuck to what I knew: cardio.
If you lift weights frequently and make use of the machines at the gym then you’re probably already very comfortable and familiar with the space. As someone who wasn’t, I found it much easier and less intimidating to try lifting weights at home. It might not make sense to go out and purchase tons of equipment for your at-home workouts but it’s definitely a good idea to start small so you get used to exercising with weights.
The first step to finding a workout regimen at home is asking yourself “What am I trying to accomplish?” For me, it was about losing weight and keeping it off – I wasn’t looking for a quick solution. Because of my goal, I knew the best way to achieve this (after some research and trial and error) was to incorporate both cardio and strength training into my plan. I created a workout plan for myself that consisted of both cardio and weights and I wrote it out below if you’re looking for some inspo to get started!
- 30-45 minutes of cardio (bike, run, or hiit) 5-7 times a week
- 20-25 minutes of weights (arms, legs, and full body) 4-5 times a week
- 2-4 mile walk 6-7 times a week
- Yoga twice a week
I started by looking for a free arm and leg workout online to incorporate some light weights, this is the arm and the leg workout I do. Based on this, I knew I needed to buy some weights. I started by purchasing 5, 8, and 10 lb dumbells, and a 15 lb kettlebell weight. These were really all I needed for my strength training exercises.
I really enjoy cycling so I decided to purchase a spinning bike because it’s my favorite form of cardio. Since I don’t have a gym membership, I knew that spinning classes would be too expensive. The bike was a bigger purchase than I would normally make but I knew this would be worth it in the long run. The cost of a spin bike was much cheaper than what I would end up paying for individual spin classes at a studio. After much deliberation and research, I chose the bike shown below from the brand Spinning. This is the company that coined the term spinning and is the original creator of the bike!
This bike is $800 and it’s not as fancy as the Peloton, Flywheel, or other pricier bikes on the market but it has all the functions I need. I decided I didn’t need a fancy screen on my bike so it wasn’t worth paying $2,500 for the Peloton. Something I also couldn’t justify was paying $39 a month for the Peloton live class subscription and without this, the bike is basically useless and becomes a regular spin bike. Aside from the monthly subscription, you also need special spin shoes to ride the Peloton bike that are $100.
I currently pay for the peloton app subscription which is only $13.95 a month and I get to take all of their classes. They also have cardio, yoga, strength, and a bunch of other classes on their app so I get a lot of use out of it.
If you’re not looking to spend any money on equipment at home I recommend finding a HIIT workout you enjoy. I used to do these all the time, they’re extremely effective for losing weight and are a fun way to incorporate cardio if you’re not a fan of running!
I also get in anywhere from 3-6 miles a day of walking. This may seem like a lot but it’s become part of my routine and it’s something I look forward to every day. I love walking and this alone has helped me keep weight off.
If you aren’t a fan of high-intensity workouts like a spin class or running, try taking a virtual yoga class! The Peloton app has a yoga section and I love their classes, since I’m already using the app for the spinning classes it makes the most sense for me to get all my use out of it! If you don’t have the app or don’t want to spend the money on it, there are plenty of free yoga classes on youtube – here is one of my favorites.
The key to staying active is to practice consistency. I found it particularly hard to stick to a workout regimen until I made it a habit. Now I look forward to them every day (ok, on most days I do). There are a ton of free resources online so you never need to pay for an expensive gym membership, you just have to find what works for you!