[By Lucy Chua]
Next to procrastination, finding excuses is probably the number one enemy of health and fitness. While we may have drawn up resolutions to tone our arms, strengthen our mid-section or just have more energy for our little ones, life just always seems to get in the way. How many times have you skipped a scheduled workout due to an impending deadline, poor weather or kids who refused to be babysit by the neighbors for a couple of hours? If the answer is one too many, then it’s about time for you to rethink your lifestyle.
In fact, don’t change a thing because we have the answer that can make working out a lot easier for you — just do it at home! Whether you are feeling anti-social that particular day or miss the non-peak window timing at the gym, it is still possible to engage in fitness right here within the comfort of your four walls. If you put your mind to it, fitness at home can be really enjoyable and you will still see all the benefits. So get down to it, put on some music and let the workout begin!
Yoga is one great fitness activity that can be practiced just about anywhere, as long as there’s a flat surface that’s big enough to lay down a proper yoga mat. The various twists and stretches can energize, strength your limbs, get your core muscles pumping and improve your mood and sense of well-being. The best thing about doing yoga alone at home is that you can truly cut out distracting surrounding noise, play your own selection of soothing music and light some aromatherapy candles or oil that will help set the perfect ambience to lull you into a true state of relaxation. If you are a novice, get started with some YouTube tutorials or books, and before you know it, you will be able to guide yourself through the basic moves. Om…..
If you are looking for a higher intensity kind of workout routine to build and tone your muscles, try doing resistance weight training with Kettlebell at home. Research have shown that working out with a Kettlebell burn more calories per minute compared to most workout routines.
“Choose an appropriate weight that you can handle comfortably and steer clear of complicated, advanced movements unless you are supervised by a certified trainer,” warns Dr. Toby Hui, medical consultant and weight management specialist with The Sloane Clinic. “Stick to simple yet effective moves such as the lateral Kettlebell swings that are easy to execute and great for your abdominal muscles. Remember to always check your posture to ensure that you are not subjecting your spine and joints to undue stress thus avoiding potential injuries.”
Belly dancing is one fitness activity that I can engage in at home to keep the sparks going between me and my hubby while keeping my three-year old suitably entertained on the couch. This is an exercise that is suitable for all body types and fitness level. If you had not try it before, do not turn your nose away or belittle it as a fitness activity. All that jiggling and writhing will give your body a good total workout and come back to me if you are not aching like you’ve ran a marathon the day after. It is important to give your muscles and joints a good stretch to warm up and cool down before and after your dance routine. Although costumes are truly optional, I find them great in getting myself into the swing of things!
Founded in 2001, Zumba has since became a global fitness phenomenon that fuses fitness, entertainment and culture into one huge exhilarating dance-fitness sensation! To date, more than 14 million individuals all over the world had caught the “Zumba bug”, dancing their way into a lifestyle of health and fitness.
Zumba classes are great for building camaraderie amongst fellow enthusiasts but at times, the constant rubbing against sweaty limbs in overcrowded classes plus the rancid stench of body odour mixed with pespiration is simply too much for me to bear. During times like this, I very much prefer to use Zumba on my Wii in the comfort of my own home. I can step around, swing about and gyrate with abandonment, working my whole body into a frenzy of sweat and joy right here in my own world.
Wii or X-Box fun & fitness
Okay, this is sort of a guilty pleasure but again, it is truly a fitness activity that you can enjoy at home instead of being a channel surfing couch potato. Besides plenty of exercise games options, Just Dance is helluva fun program as I enjoy seeing my avatar climb up measurable goals. These games are mostly designed to tell you how effective your moves are so in return, they really make you pay attention to your bodily movements. This will definitely improve our coordination and sense of balance, ultimately leading to a decreased likelihood of injury while participating in any other form of indoors or outdfoors fitness activities.
Well to sum it up, if you are perfectly well but don’t feel like stepping out of the comfort zone of your nest, that’s not going to be a legitimate excuse for not engaging in fitness, ladies! Remember these golden words of wisdom, “There are no ugly women, just lazy ones”….
* Selected as Editor’s Choice Feb 2014*