Working out, in general, can be difficult. Try doing it amidst the uncertainty of a pandemic, and you’ll wish you had your key ready to be scanned at the local fitness center with assisted machines again.
They always say going to the gym is half the battle for starting, ultimately staying consistent and disciplined with a workout. If this isn’t the truth, I don’t know what is. When I’ve started new workout routines, this was always the most formidable barrier to break. Typically, as long as I can get to the gym, I will put in the time, energy, and effort it takes to complete a workout. But getting there is the real battle.
Why workout when I can watch television, read articles that tickle my fancy, or get lost in deep thought about my present and what the future holds? Well, the truth is, those things are needed, in moderation, of course, but so is working out. At this point, no one argues that workout out regularly leads to a longer, healthier, more fulfilled life.
Studies back these notions, showing not only that being active results in decreased chances of having a life-altering disease throughout your lifetime, but also brings well-being, a crucial component to your happiness. Simply put, you feel better after you work out. It makes you feel accomplished, leaves you feeling ready to take on the world, and even boosts your brain’s serotonin levels, which is the chemical that makes you feel happy.
Ahh, the great equalizer, time. You may find yourself in a bit of a pickle. Since the pandemic, you have not only been working remotely but doing everything remotely, including your workout. Maybe before, it was easy for you to get to the gym and train. Perhaps it’s why you were so successful in doing so because you allocated a specific amount of time in your weekly routine to complete your workouts.
Now, all of a sudden, your world has been flipped upside down. No more dropping the kids off at practice, no more alone time with your significant other or yourself, no more planning, since every day brings with it a new set of hardships and challenges. You can’t remember what month it is, let alone day of the week, and it feels like the pre-pandemic month of February was ages ago.
Yet, as with anything in life, if it is growth you seek, you must water it. The grass grows where you water it, which couldn’t be more accurate when working out. It’s hard to work out, especially from home, and easier to sit back, be lazy, and drink some wine or watch a movie. Unfortunately, if you have fitness goals, they won’t be reached by doing the things mentioned above. Of course, you also want to make time for your mental, not just your physical well-being. They go hand in hand. If one or the other lacks nutrients and the time you give it, the other will suffer indeed. You must be conscious of your time and how you disperse it. It’s the biggest inhibitor of you starting and completing your workout, specifically at home.
Whether working or working out from home, it is now more demanding than ever to stay disciplined. With distractions at an all-time high, your utopian idea of getting the same workout you get at the gym at home went out the window months ago when you realized you’d have to be a worker, parent, friend, and everything else in between, in one setting. Being a jack of all trades is problematic in and of itself. Imagine balancing the everyday rigors of life in one place, every single day. I don’t know about you, but just the thought of it makes me stress. With interruptions abound, how will you finish, and ultimately stay consistent with your workout?
Firstly, leave the excuses at the door. You know, your front door. Although working out at home provides a more challenging environment to workout in, it can be done. Don’t have any equipment? You don’t need it. There are so many bodyweight exercises that can be done anywhere, any time, any place. Push-ups, sit-ups, squats, and lunges, to name a few, don’t require any equipment other than your will and tenacity to complete them.
They are each effective and allow you to get a full-body workout. Maybe you like the treadmill or step climber. Take a run around your neighborhood, find some stairs, and run up and down them a few times. Is it not the same? Well, as with anything in life, you can find an excuse not to do it, or you can persevere and acclimate to these times. The pandemic won’t last forever, but in the meantime, we must adapt.
Also, minimize distractions. As hard as it is to plan with the pandemic, you must attempt to stick to your schedule. If you have children, make time for them, but let them know that you need time for yourself, too. It includes you working out and just taking a few minutes here and there for yourself. If you have a significant other, let them know the same. If stopping interruptions means putting your phone in the other room, so it doesn’t go off incessantly while you try to work out, do it. Or if it means putting the dogs or cats in your room for an hour, do it. Whatever your situation may be, you have to find time for yourself and to workout.
As with most situations in life and our ability to persevere despite them, it’s about the will. The will and desire to make it happen. If you lack the motivation to do so, you’ll never finish, let alone start to achieve your fitness aspirations. Taking care of your body is key to living a long, healthy life. As tough as it may be to begin a new workout routine in the middle of a pandemic, it can be done. If you make time, minimize distractions, leave excuses at the door, and stay self-disciplined, you can workout at home. Simply put, it just comes down to how bad you want it.