Nomad Life

How to Work Out From Home for Free

These days, a workout-from-home lifestyle is ubiquitous. With the pandemic, gym rats were forced into their homes where posting workouts on the internet became their new way to “flex”. Many of us consumed this free content and learned how to work out from home. Others bought expensive equipment, then learned how to work out from home. And some chose not to learn how to work out from home. Whatever your decision, I support you. Me, I never liked gyms. I learned how to work out from home in graduate school when I had no money, no time, and certainly no energy. The efficiency of these workouts was life-changing. I could roll out of bed, throw on a dingy t-shirt from high school, feel sweaty, and be done in 30 minutes or less. About 3 years later now, my routine hasn’t really changed. So, without further ado here are my suggestions for how to work out from home…consistently…for free. 

Mediums to Use:

Your Fitness Friends:

For me, this is my older sister. (Who also works out exclusively at home). Anyway, she was a college athlete and overall is more knowledgeable and passionate about fitness than I am. She was and still is a great resource. One time, she even made me a Google doc with about 10-15, 20-minute workouts that absolutely kicked my ass. She is also the person who taught me that daily workouts don’t have to be hours long. The point is, your fitness friends will probably be more flattered than annoyed by your inquiries and ultimately have your best interests at heart. With that said, be careful about who you choose to take advice from and avoid comparison…it’s a slippery slope. Also, don’t worry, if you don’t have any friends that are passionate about fitness, it’s not a requirement.

YouTube:

Maybe this stems from entertaining myself with my mother’s Tae Bo videos growing up. I must’ve felt inspired by the encouragement that Billy Banks shouted through the television and felt a rush when I heard “double time”. Anyway, YouTube follow-along videos have become the primary source of how I work out. Sure, I’ve had to sift through the intense amount of workout videos on YouTube, but I now rotate between about 5 fitness channels.

In my experience, fitness YouTubers label their videos using very specific language, so you can be intentional about what type of workout you want. For example, when I hurt my wrist I searched “20-minute HIIT workout all standing” and came up with a ton of results. So, think about what area of the body you want to target, how long you want it to be if you’re interested in it being for a specific gender, the level of intensity you want, and the type of workout. I choose to go with “no equipment” workouts mostly because I am cheap and maintain my goals just fine without weights etc. Here’s a list of my favorite channels. My workouts of choice on YouTube are HIIT, Tabata, and Yoga. 

  1. Fit By Mik
  2. Self
  3. Juice and Toya 
  4. Tana Yoga
  5.  Yoga With Adriene, the first to do it. A true 👑 

Fitness Apps:

Workout apps are all the rage right now, but I have to be honest, I do not use them. This is not due to some personal vendetta I have against fitness apps. I honestly just never explored them. If you want to try some out read 34 Best Free Workout Apps to Try Right Now

Social Media:

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again. Make social media work for you. Take care when using social media for fitness and follow those who make you feel good. Focus on the content that you can relate to and that seems genuine. For example, I follow Pony Tail on a Trail because her fitness content is centered on hiking. I also like accounts that stay away from posting body shots and stick to valuable content like posting daily workouts like @fafproathletic. My preferred social media of choice for fitness, however, is Pinterest. I appreciate the search engine quality of it along with the added benefits of being able to categorize and save posts.

Establish a Routine:

The most difficult part about learning how to work out from home is establishing a routine. With no subscriptions, monthly fees, or scheduled class times it gets difficult to maintain a schedule. Again, everyone is different so it may take time to figure out what works best for you. My work schedule is pretty variable, so it is comforting for me to keep my exercise consistent in the mornings. This helps to shake off the grogginess and gets it out of the way so I’m not dreading it later.

I’ve set a boundary with working out on the weekends as I typically preserve Saturday and Sunday for rest or something active outside like hiking or skiing. If you read my disclaimer, you know I do not spend much time on exercise. Typically, I have time for 20-40 minutes, and I aim to work out between 4 and 5 times a week. 

Some Tips to Establish and Maintain your Routine:

  • Stick to the routine for at least 2 weeks, then make adjustments
  • Start Small and build from there
  • Make a list of short-term goals & long-term goals 
  • Make a list of types of exercise that you enjoy 
  • Save, bookmark, write down, etc. your favorite workouts to motivate you on sluggish days. Repeat these workouts as often as you like. 
  • Try to take time and notice how your mind and body feel after a workout. This really helps to keep me motivated.  
  • Use 30-day challenges or guides (e.g. Yoga with Adriene has many “30 days of yoga series”). 

Be Patient & Flexible:

Listen to your body. If you are overly exhausted, let yourself take a break. Maybe you replace your high-intensity workout with something low-intensity, maybe you take a walk, or maybe you sleep in that day. If you slip, that does not mean that you have to slide.

If you find yourself feeling unmotivated, switch things up. This can look like changing the environment. “At home” doesn’t mean you always have to be physically “at home”. Typically, I’ll go outside or to my favorite park for a run, walk, hike, or bike ride. You can also ask someone to join you, or try a new YouTube channel or App. Additionally, it can’t hurt to research free workout classes in your city and drop in. I like to avoid becoming a complete fitness robot so that I can leave space and energy for life to also happen. I have to allow myself grace so that I am not constantly feeling guilty or incompetent for missing a day or taking it easy. 

As a disclaimer I am not an expert in fitness and I am simply sharing my own experience. I want what I write on this subject to be sensitive to all perspectives while (hopefully) being helpful. My main focus is to offer budget-friendly health/wellness options. Now, if you felt inspired to try some at-home fitness OR have an at-home routine of your own let me know in the comments below! Happy exercising AND money-saving 💰!

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