It can be challenging to motivate yourself to stay active from home. Since we can’t go to the gym or participate in school sports, working out can get boring fast. To find some motivation, we reached out to some active AISB students and teachers to see how they’ve reintroduced exercise into their schedules.
Workout #1: Push-ups
In a survey sent out to AISB students, the majority of respondents mentioned push-ups as part of their daily or weekly routine. And even though push-ups are not necessarily an entire workout, you can definitely construct one out of them. According to Harvard Health, push-ups are a great exercise, due to the fact that they engage a large majority of your body. You work your arms, chest, abdomen, hips, and even legs when performing a traditional push-up (arms extended, hands shoulder-width apart, and feet together).
There are many variations to the traditional push-up, like the diamond push-up, wide, elevated, and pike. Each of these variations focus on different muscle groups. For example, diamond push-ups work your triceps, while the pike works your shoulders more.
To make sure you’re getting the best out of a push-up, follow Harvard Men’s Health Watch Editor Matthew Solan’s advice: “Try to take two seconds to go down and one second to go up.” Keeping your muscles under tension for longer periods of time results in building bigger, stronger muscles.
Workout #2: HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training)
HIIT workouts seem to be especially popular among student athletes, as they build muscle throughout the body while improving stamina.
Other students mentioned they do HIIT workouts for the amount of calories burned in one session. In fact, research suggests that this type of training (20 seconds of maximum effort followed by a rest period of 40 seconds) burns 25-30% more calories than other types of exercise.
AISB PE Teacher Timotheus Thio recommends performing body weight exercises like squats, burpees, squats, push-ups, lunges, etc. for one minute then resting for 15 seconds before transitioning into the next exercise. Additionally, he advises to complete three whole rounds of the exercise and do this three times every week to balance exercise and free time.
Here are some great HIIT workouts you should try:
Workout #3: Running
“Cardio” was mentioned by most students, as something most strive to do daily. Cardiovascular exercises can also be referred to as aerobic exercises due to the constant use of oxygen needed to keep the body working for a long period of time.
The Mayo Clinic states that some of the main benefits of doing aerobic exercise includes boosting your immune system, reducing health risks including heart disease, along with boosting your mood.
Thio’s favorite form of cardio is running, which he says “there is no substitute.” Running is great because you can do it at your own pace and adapt it to your skill level. Thio’s ideal spot for running is a football field because he can measure out exactly how far he runs. But if you can’t find a football field to run on, a great alternative is Herastrau Lake. One loop around the lake is about six kilometers and comes with a beautiful view to enjoy when running. Thio suggests running twice a week since he has three other days dedicated to HIIT workouts.
Here are some Running Apps (iOS and Android) suggested by our community:
Strava: This app is a great option for friends to use together, to compare times. It also has a GPS tracker that draws your entire run.
Runkeeper: Records distance and pace of each run which allows you to track your improvement over time. You can also use it for biking.
Workout #4: Ab Videos
At one time or another, we’ve probably all thought about how great it would be to have an amazing six pack. But for many, it might feel like too much work.
Well, if you want to finally get those washboard abs, a workout that is solely based on training them is the perfect option and it barely takes any time out of your day. The benefits go way beyond physical appearance. The muscles in our abdominals stabilize our torso and allow us to maintain good posture. Regarding sports, strong abdominal muscles have actually been proven to make humans faster. This is because abs increase the stability of our hips, pelvis, and knees, which creates more efficient strides.
“Core training makes you a better athlete in just about any strength or speed sport,” claims Dr. Stuart McGill, a professor of spine biomechanics at the University of Waterloo. Abs are just like any other muscle, which is why you need a break after every day of working them out. If you do other workouts that are not solely based on your abs, working your abs 2-3 times a week is perfect.
Some Exhausting Ab Workouts:
Apps to Help with Motivation
Sometimes it can be difficult to find the motivation to go on a run or do an ab workout. Using a fitness app can help by tracking your exercise and progress.
- For tracking meals and workouts: My Fitness Pal
My Fitness Pal is a free food diary app with a nutritional database of more than 11 million foods. You can also log workouts to track activities. This app is typically used as a weight loss tool.
- For getting in quick workouts: The 7 Minute Workout
This app is easy to use and great for people who don’t want to spend a lot of time on exhaustive workouts. It’s all based on body weight exercises and is suitable for beginners. For full access, you need to pay 16 RON.
- For personalized workout programs: JEFIT
JEFIT allows you to create plans, record trainings, and analyze your workout data to improve your fitness. It’s a great app for those wanting to lift weights at the gym or at home. The basic version is free, and the “elite” version costs approx. 29 RON per month.
Tell us: What are your favorite at-home workouts? Comment below with suggestions!