Laura Sandvik's Blog
Just because your new house doesn’t have room for a gym doesn’t mean you can’t get a workout there. Items all over your home make perfect gym props, so all you need is a little floor space—no special rooms required.
The most natural workout in your home is to use the stairs. If you have more than one floor, design your day so that you make several trips up and down the stairs. No, don't practice economy by trying to get everything in one load. Instead, make multiple trips and get all those steps in for the day. Work it fast for cardio or carry loads to build muscle. Either way, your steps are your workout friend.
If you don’t have a second story or basement to get your workout in gear, a single porch or patio step does nicely for an aerobic step workout. Just make sure your step’s tread is deep enough that you can keep your balance as you step on and off.
Another built-in prop is the kitchen (or bathroom) counter. In just a few strategic minutes a day, you can tone your core, chest, and arms. Place your hands on the countertop—about shoulder-width apart—and step back with your feet until your feet are as far as they can reach while flat on the floor. Creating a straight line from head to toe and with arms fully extended, press into the counter as you bend your elbows and allow your weight to shift to your toes. Do two or three sets of 10-15 “push-ups” as you stand in the kitchen waiting for your coffee to brew or dinner to cook.
Provided that your shower has a non-skid floor, get in a few reps of wall presses as you take your morning rinse.
Other items on hand
- Cans: No need to buy costly weights. Add a full can in each hand as you do your steps to increase your workout.
- Jugs: Milk, juice, or laundry soap jugs work great for getting a good arm workout. Try bicep curls or overhead presses. Just in case you drop one, though, it's better to re-fill an empty one with water rather than the one fresh from the store. A full milk jug supplies about eight and a half pounds to each arm: for best results, use identical jugs left and right.
- Chairs: Give yourself a full-body workout with a sturdy chair (kitchen or dining room chairs that don’t tip when you press on the back). Standing in front of the seat, facing away and about one foot in front of the chair, slowly lower yourself toward the chair and grab the seat with your hands. Raise and lower your body to give your arms and core some love. Or, stand beside the chair back and use it as a support when you lift one leg out to the side, front, and back.
- You: Remember that your body weight is the perfect piece of equipment for toning and strengthening exercise. Check out online Pilates, yoga, Zumba, or kickboxing routines or do your squats, pushups, burpees, or lunges.
If a full home gym is on your wish list, reach out to your real estate professional to keep an eye out for the perfect setup for you.