The key to getting and staying healthy is to not be completely reliant on the gym, but to have home as a strong back up plan. To get healthy at home, check out these six powerful keys to developing an at home wellness practice. I bet like most of us, you struggle with maintaining a consistent exercise routine and healthier eating habits.
You have the gym membership and yoga classes. You try to eat right and even make yourself the occasional green drink but overall if we’re being completely honest, many people are not all that healthy these days. Once you’re used to working out at home, once you’ve created that ‘habit’, you will understand why it’s so important to have a place in your home to workout. So, I created this little article just for you. I know you struggle with working out consistently because I’ve been there myself and still struggle more often than I care to admit.
First and most importantly is the “where” in your home: where in your home do you go to rejuvenate, groom and exercise most consistently? What areas in your kitchen do you do healthy meal prep?
Healthy at Home: Six Powerful Keys to an at Home Wellness Practice
Our most consistent healthy meals are probably happening at home already simply because you have more control over what you eat there; where you don’t have to “go somewhere” or “stop some place” to exercise; where you have the option to have or not have tempting wine, dairy and sugary treats on hand; and where you can always find a quiet and pretty spot to restore yourself.
Having One or Two Special Spots for at Home Wellness Practices
It’s important to identify a spot that you feel good about, that you’ll return to time after time. This will reinforce a habit. If you don’t have a stand-alone workout space, let’s talk about alternatives.
Not all of us have workout rooms and I have some suggestions. I’ve successfully used one end of my large formal living room: my den/ television room and my home office a little less successfully. In my current home my workout space is in the upstairs loft. This is where most of my home workouts happen now, and it works really well because there’s room for my bike and other small equipment; the views are great; and the space is inspiring, clean, well-lit and quiet.
What I don’t recommend is using the guest room because your routines will fall apart the moment company comes. And I don’t recommend the master bed or bath simply because it’s already a hub of activities for hair styling, dressing, make up, dental care, etc. You need something that’s not so busy and one that doesn’t represent sleep.
Having In Home Equipment Is Key
No, you don’t need major weights or benches for this plan. All you need is a stay-bike, a re-bounder, two different size hand weights and a yoga mat. Some optional equipment could be yoga blocks, a stability ball, a kettle ball, and foam rollers for myo-fascial release.
If you haven’t tried the re-bounder yet, do yourself a favor and spend the $130 for one. Rebounding is basically dance-bouncing, bare footed, in place on a mini trampoline. I like to turn on some awesome music. It is mega fun, moves lymph, gets your heart rate up, burns calories and best of all alleviates depression in just 15-20 minutes a day. They are easy to store and feel super good on your legs, calves and feet.
Yoga can happen at home, with or without a mat. However, I like the mat because it’s a visual prompt and a great habit enhancer. I’ve been practicing it since I was a child, long before it became popular in this country. I’ve taken one yoga class in my adult life, yet I’ve been consistently practicing it at home for more years than I can count.
Gym Equipment for Your at Home Wellness Practices
When pandemics aren’t a concern, having a gym membership is beneficial too. But the whole idea is not to skip working out just because you don’t feel like going to the gym or doing your hair or make up. Or because you don’t have time to drive there. If for whatever reason you can’t go, you know in a pinch you can get a sufficient workout at home.
Before COVID I was in the gym 20- 25 minutes, three times a week. Between the aerobic bike, rebounder, yoga and weights all my exercise needs are covered. I also know that when needed, I have everything I need at home.
Rebounder (mini trampoline)
Hand weights (one pair of light weight; one pair of heavy weight. I use ten lbs. but find what you’re comfortable with)
Silicon foot massage ball (for grabbing exercises for feet and toes)
Clothing and proper shoes
The Right Eating Plan
There is really only one correct eating plan for all of us, and that’s a plant based, whole foods diet. The more organic and the more raw veggies, dark leafy greens, sprouted nuts and fresh fruits you include, the better. You can certainly choose animal products and you won’t die from them. But the fact remains alcohol, sugar, packaged foods, meat and dairy aren’t good for us so at the very least limit your intake. Read the China Study by Dr. T. Colin Campbell. Watch documentary Forks Over Knives. They give excellent science-based explanations as to why plants are best for human consumption. Not animals and animal fats.
I get it. Making fresh salads and juices takes time! And it takes some getting used to. But guess what? That time you lose in chopping and juicing you gain from not having to cook as much. My food prep goes like this: a morning green juice which I make two at a time and freeze, and bowl of berries; a big raw salad at lunch with garbanzo beans or soaked nuts, and roasted vegetable and savory plant-based soups and chili for dinner. I make enough to last a few days. Sometimes if I feel like pasta, I’ll add some Rotelli to my soup and make a minestrone.
So many people don’t want to give up meat so for them I suggest wild salmon 3 – 4 times a week. The vegetarian cuisine is beautiful, healthy, flavorful, colorful, joyful, kind, ethical and diverse. I strongly urge you to give this vibrant new lifestyle a try and watch your skin firm up, your waistline shrink and your mood and energy soar.
Scheduling Consistent Exercise
To ensure your own success you will want to seriously consider blocking out the time in your Google Calendar or iCalendar for exercise and meals. I schedule everything I do from 6:00 am to 10:00 pm including work, chores, exercise, errands, juicing, lunch and dinner. Because my workouts are sixty to seventy-five minutes a day, five days a week, I have to schedule them tightly around work. I like to break them up into smaller chunks.
Ride your stay-bike or dance on the re-bounder twenty minutes every morning and on alternating days you can do Yoga or workout at your nearby gym. At 25 minutes a session, weights take considerably less time than yoga which is why I only do Yoga Tuesdays and Thursdays, and weights Monday, Wednesday and Friday.
I suggest you bike or re-bound before work; or a walk during lunch; and your weights or Yoga practice after work. On the weekends do something outside, something less structured. I love tennis, hiking and kayaking with my mate.
It’s important to set yourself up for success. If that means working out early in the morning, then do that. If that means breaking it up into fifteen-to-twenty-minute increments, do that. Keeping agreements with yourself is incredibly important to not only your health but also your self-esteem. You know that friend who always keeps her word, the one you can always count on? Be her. And don’t forget to schedule it!
7 Day Health and Wellness Challenge!
Bye for now!
For more on health and wellness, check out my article, Three Remodeling Budgets and Check Lists for a Health-Conscious Kitchen!