At Home Wellness
By Nolan P. Schmidt
The past 12 months have confined us to our homes more than we are typically used to. COVID-19 has forced people to get a little creative in their journey to remain well and healthy. Pandemic or not, an exercise facility may not be everyone’s cup of tea especially if they are just beginning a fitness journey. Try cultivating a healthy environment at home with these very simple exercises.
Five Exercises To Jumpstart A Fitness Journey At Home
What’s It Working? Quadriceps, Glutes and Hamstrings
Why? There is really no way to avoid some variance of a squat when beginning a health and fitness journey. The legs and glutes are one of the biggest muscle groups in the entire body and are vital to wellness. Begin with a simple bodyweight squat and graduate to some resistance as time passes. However, NEVER sacrifice weight for proper form to avoid serious injury.
What’s It Working? Triceps
Why? When we talk about squats, it is almost an exercise you cannot avoid. The tricep dip seems like an exercise that people readily avoid. While the tricep muscles are a small part of your arm, it is one of the most important pieces in full-body wellness. Dips are an exercise that can be done anywhere in the house too. Simply make sure that your elbows are as parallel as possible. If you don’t feel a burn in the back of your arm, you need to adjust your form.
What’s It Working? Chest and Triceps
Why? Perhaps the most hated exercise by any person, regardless of their fitness level, push-ups take us to the days of gym class and tests of strength. They do not need to be that scary though. While you may be conditioned to hate push-ups, they can be modified or made easier too. Dropping your knees to the ground on a push-up has ZERO shame in it. Your middle school gym teacher may have said differently, but he is not you. Listen to your body and modify!
What’s It Working? Abdominals and Obliques
Why? When asked why you exercise your abs (or core), 95 percent of people will say: “to get a six-pack”. That does not need to be the end goal though despite that being the common theme. Core strength is incredibly important to the entire body. A weak core usually means other areas of the body are weak too. It may be a pain, but it is so worth it.
What’s It Working? Full Body/Cardiovascular Health
Why? Nobody likes burpees. If they say they do, they’re lying to look cool. Yet, they are one of the few bodyweight moves that require every major part of the body to be involved. You will be using your arms, your chest, your back, your shoulders, your core and your legs. On top of that, it is a great way to include some cardio in a bodyweight workout.
Ready For A Challenge? Break a sweat with this at-home workout:
– Squats (as many reps for two minutes)
– Dips (as many reps for two minutes)
– Push-ups (as many reps for two minutes)
– Crunch (as many reps for two minutes)
– Burpees (as many reps for two minutes)
Count your reps for each exercise and jot it down. As time progresses, see your numbers rise. Keep in mind, repetitions are just that, they are only a benchmark to improve in the future. Do not lose confidence or motivation because you don’t see a certain number when you complete each exercise.
Five Snacks To Substitute At Home
Exercise is one piece of the puzzle. Nutrient-enriched food is the other piece to a successful health climb. Everyone loves potato chips and snacks, but do you have the discipline to set those aside for a healthier option? Indulging every once and a while is great, but it won’t provide long-term results. Try these substitutes for the everyday snack.
The fact that these exist and have not become the most popular snack in America is confusing. They taste equally as indulgent as regular chips with less fat, fewer carbs and more protein. Give them a try and you will be hooked.
We all want to cut down fat in our diet and on our waistline. While almonds are fatty by nature, they are full of healthy fats that your body needs to keep running efficiently. They are a delightful snack that helps fill your fat intake for the day.
No fat, low carb and high in protein, Greek yogurt can become a real game-changer for your diet. Be sure to check the added sugars before purchasing as well.
Rice cakes are not always for everyone. Sometimes it is the texture that throws people or it could be their lack of flavor (if you buy the plain ones). To be honest, chocolate rice cakes and a little bit of peanut butter is a snack that is as flavorful and enjoyable as any cookie or other sweet. It is also quite low in calories (depending on how much peanut butter you use).
Cottage Cheese (One percent)
Cottage cheese has the potential to become an unhealthy snack in a hurry. Depending on what fat percentage you purchase, cottage cheese can become a fattier snack if not consumed in portions. Cottage cheese also has naturally occurring sodium that is higher than the other snacks on this list. Do yourself a favor and buy a lower fat cottage cheese (one percent or so) and do not buy any flavored cottage cheese. Those are packed with added sodium that actually makes the cottage cheese extremely unhealthy.
Go to the next page to learn more about at-home nutrition from an expert!