With the recent outbreak of COVID-19, people are being advised to stay inside and avoid outside contact with others as much as possible. This may seem like an introvert’s dream, but for those of us with intense workout routines, self-quarantining can feel like a nightmare. However, just because you can’t hit the gym doesn’t mean that your workout routine has to suffer. We’ve put together a list of workouts you can do with common household items to help you stay fit and healthy until the gyms are open again.
Weight Train with Jugs of Water
It may sound silly, but gallon jugs of water or milk can be a great tool to weight train with if you’re staying indoors. When filled to the top, these containers can replace 8.5 lbs weights and can help you add resistance and work for different muscle groups when used properly. Keep in mind that if 8.5 lbs weights are too heavy for you, you can pour some of the liquid out, just make sure the same amount is in both jugs. If you have two available, grab one with each hand and try one of these exercises:
Bent Over Rows
If you’re looking to work your glutes and shoulder blades, this is a great exercise to try. Holding a gallon jug in each hand, start by placing your arms by your side and lifting your shoulders back. Draw in your abs to help support your back and bend slightly at the hips. Keeping your abs tight, pull your elbows straight back and then extend your arm back down. Aim for 3 sets of 10 reps with these, taking a short break in between.
Work those quads and glutes with plie squats. To do this, you’ll need just one jug of water. Start by spreading your legs about 45 degrees apart while keeping your feet planted firmly on the ground and your knees angled in the same direction as your toes. Draw your ab muscles in, and stand with your shoulder muscles pulled back and down while gripping the water jug with both hands in the center of your body. Keeping your back straight, lower your rear to the floor and then come back up to the top, making sure to keep your breathing even the entire time. For an extra challenge, hold the water jug sideways to work your arm muscles.
Firming Exercises Using a Chair
Did you know that your dining room chairs can be used as exercise equipment? Using a chair with these exercises will help you feel that much-needed burn you can’t get from the gym right now.
Build your upper body strength and work the muscles in the back by performing chair dips. For these, place your chair against a wall and begin by sitting with your knees bent and feet flat on the floor. Place your hands firmly on the edge of the chair with your fingers pointing forward. Scoot your bottom to the edge of the chair and point your toes up, bend your elbows back and begin by lowering your bottom towards the floor without hitting it. Bring yourself back up and repeat for 20 reps.
Performing planks is a great way to tone your midsection and work your abdominal muscles. With your chair propped up against the wall so that it doesn’t move, place your forearms on the seat of the chair with your hands touching. Stretch your legs out behind you with your toes firmly planted on the floor. While squeezing in your abs, maintain a straight line throughout your body and keep your hips centered. Aim to hold this position for 60 seconds, and repeat for 2 more reps.
Grab a Dishtowel to Feel the Burn
When you’re hunkered down in your house a simple dish towel can also be used to give you a good workout.
Push-pull Chest Presses
This easy exercise is designed to work your biceps, triceps, core, and pecs, and is great for burning fat. Begin by gripping your dishtowel on both sides, with your hands placed shoulder length apart from each other and elbows bent. Push out your right arm slowly and steadily, and pull in with your left hand at the same. Be sure to keep your towel tightly stretched while you do this. Wait a few seconds in between and repeat with the opposite hands. Aim to do this for 3 sets of 15 reps.
Tighten your core and strengthen your abs by using your dish towel for extended crunches. To begin, lie on the ground with your knees bent and your feet flat. You will fold your dish towel into a square and place it under your lower back, placing the edge of it just above your hips. Like a regular crunch, you’ll clasp your hands behind your head. Inhale in, and as you exhale lift your head and shoulders off of the ground and hold this position for 3 seconds. Strive for 10 of these reps.
Stay in Shape Without Leaving the House
We know that there’s nothing quite like hitting the gym to work your muscles and boost your mood, but staying in and practicing social distancing doesn’t mean you have to completely lose sight of your fitness goals. Using simple household items, you can stay motivated and burn some calories with your loved ones. So instead of spending hours watching TV on the couch, grab a water jug, chair, or dish towel to stay fit and weather the storm.