Working out at Home

Are you skipping  exercise because you can’t get the gym?  Is the gym too expensive? Parking difficult to find?  Hours not convenient for you?  Is your optimal time to workout everyone else’s favorite time, so there are lines for the equipment? You might be surprised to learn that you can work out at home without needing a full gym in your house.

A few years ago, when my son was small, I belonged to a neighborhood gym.  I was initially attracted to this gym because they had free babysitting, and I wouldn’t need to make alternative child care arrangements while I worked out.  Unfortunately, I had to leave this gym because of the babysitting.  My son has food allergies, and was too young to know to say know if someone offered him a treat that he shouldn’t eat.  On two occasions, he was given goldfish by another child, even after I had spoken to the babysitting staff about his allergies.  I provided his own snacks for them, and was frankly quite afraid to bring him to the gym after the second incident.

My husband was raving about a DVD workout program that he had, and I decided to try working out from home.  We had a whole assortment of dumbbells and barbells that I had collected over the years.  Again, I quickly found that this was not a great solution.  My little guy LIKED to join mommy for exercise, and while that’s a great attitude for him, it was dangerous for him to be underfoot if mommy was lifting heavy weights.  I was now terrified of falling over him with a 20# weight in my hand.  I needed another solution.  The DVD’s always had one exerciser performing similar exercises with rubber tubing (elastic resistance).  These looked like a great option.  I think our DVD even came with a few starter bands.  If I dropped one of these, no one would get hurt!  Once I decided that bands would work, I started researching the bands.

I was surprised to learn that in clinical studies, exercisers did as well, or better with bands than with free weights.  More muscle was gained, bones were strengthened, and injuries rehabbed.  Ultimately, I decided on the Bodylastics system, since I loved the idea of just clipping on more weight as needed, rather than needing to switch bands.  The door anchors that come with the kit, make the bands very versatile.  I can anchor the resistance from the top, the bottom, chest height, or really anywhere.  I can clip on an unlimited # of bands, as desired.  I even found that while the bands were working my muscles just as hard as free weights were, they were easier on my joints.  For someone who has been thru whiplash in a car accident, less injuries was a nice added benefit.

Now, as a trainer, I find that these resistance bands are very friendly for folks who are new to exercising.  They aren’t intimidating, but they can still produce a powerful workout.  They are perfect for my Skype clients, as I can’t bring my equipment to them.  They are also an inexpensive solution for someone has no prior gym equipment in their house.  All they need is a door and some room to workout.

So, if you need more incentive to get off the couch, you don’t need to run straight to the gym.  Elastic bands will allow you to  workout at home, without the parking or weather headaches!

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