Working out is attributed to many different positive health benefits. Some of these include decreasing resting heart rate and blood pressure, decreasing risk of diabetes and obesity, improving self esteem, energy, and mood.
Whether you are someone who has been working out for years, or are just starting to get in shape, working out at home can be just as effective as an expensive gym membership or personal trainer.
Starting a fitness plan can seem like a huge goal and working out from home may not seem like it will give you the motivation necessary to really achieve your workout goal. However, if you stick to these 7 steps to achieving a fitness plan from home, you will be sure to stay on track.
Step One: Determine Your Workout Goal
Clearly, something lit a fire within you to want to start working out. Unless you know what you want your outcome to be, you will not be able to move forward with your at home fitness plan.
Start with just a broad term fitness goal
- Build upper body strength
- Build core strength
- Build lower body strength
- Lose weight
- Gain flexibility
- Improve mood
- Look better
Once you establish your main purpose for starting a workout plan, you can begin making actual moves towards achieving your fitness goal.
Step Two: Create a Workout Space
Creating a well designed workout space is crucial for sticking to your workout plan. Pick a room that is not utilized for other day to day activities, if possible. Picking a room specifically for working out will put you in the workout mindset every time you step into it. If you pick the same room to workout in that you also lounge and watch TV in, you might not be as motivated to workout or be able to relax because your mind is associating the room with very different activities.
Keep in mind that you will need a lot of space, maybe more than you think you might need. It also might be beneficial to choose a room with tile or wood floors, not carpet. Working out on carpet is not as easy for correct form as hard flooring.
Bring any equipment into this room that you think might be beneficial for exercising. You don’t necessarily need workout equipment to get a good workout. However, if you do have some dumbbells, an exercise ball, or even a mirror to view your form, it might be a good idea to bring these into your workout area.
Step Three: Find the Style you love
If you are just starting out with a workout regimen, you might need some trial and error before you decide what type of workout you like the best and what will help you achieve your fitness goal. For the first month, try a different style of workout, or combinations of workouts, until you find something that works for you.
Here are some popular styles:
Different ways to get your at home workouts
After deciding the style or styles of exercise you’re going to plan your workout regimen around, decide what platform you want to utilize for your at home workouts.
- Class Pass is a great website to use for at home workouts. It includes over 2,000 workouts with filtering options so you can choose yoga, lower body, upper body, HIIT, etc
- Fitness Blender is a website that showcases not only free at home workouts, but also includes other resources on their site like healthy recipes and health related blogs
- Livestrong is a great website for a variety of different workout classes.
- Youtube is an amazing resource as well for free online yoga classes. I recommend Allie the Journey Junkie for yoga, Anabolic Aliens or Pamela Reif for strength training, and group HIIT for high intensity interval training workouts.
Step Four: Develop a SMART Goal for Your at Home Workout Plan
Developing a SMART goal is essential to actually taking your broad fitness goal to the next level. SMART stands for:
Specific: clear, unambiguous, not vague
Fitness example: I will lose weight by working out at home with YouTube workouts.
Measurable: “how many?”, “how much?”, “how will I know when I reach my goal?”
Fitness example: I will lose 20 pounds
Achievable: “do I have the resources and capabilities to achieve my goal?”, “have others done this before?”, “is there anything I am missing that I need to achieve this goal?”
Fitness example: I will watch at home workouts that require no equipment and are designed for beginners
Realistic: “is this goal realistic?”, “Can I put in the time and effort realistically into achieving this goal?” “do I have enough time, resources, will power?”
Fitness example: I will workout 3 times a week after 4 pm every day because that is when I have free time
Timely: “I need to achieve this in 6 months”
Fitness example: I will achieve my goal by Sept 1st
Put together: I will lose 20 pounds by Sept 1st by doing at home YouTube workouts that require no equipment and are designed for beginners, 3 times a week after 4 pm when I have free time.
Write this SMART goal on a note, in your calendar, or anywhere you will regularly look at it. Read it to yourself once a day to keep the goal fresh in your mind. Writing down the specific days you plan on working out in your calendar and setting a reminder will help keep you accountable.
Step Five: Create a Habit out of Working Out at Home
Creating a habit for your workout schedule will ensure you will stick to it.
You need to have a reward immediately following the action for it to become a habit. Because the main reward that you want from working out (losing fat, gaining muscle) doesn’t happen at the time immediately following the workout, it might be difficult to make working out a habit.
A good trick to ensure that you will form a habit of working out is to reward yourself after each workout. You might eat a bowl of ice cream after a workout, save your favorite show or podcast after working out, or drink a glass of wine after a workout. Whatever it is that makes you feel good, incorporate that into the workout habit you are trying to form and it will stick.
Step Six: Keep your Fitness Goal Motivation Up
Keeping your motivation going is essential to staying on track with your workout plan. Especially since you are working out at home, potentially within several feet of your comfy couch or bed, keeping the mindset of achieving your fitness goal needs to be reiterated daily.
Remind yourself of your SMART goal every day
Your SMART goal is the ticket to actually achieving a realistic fitness goal. If you remind yourself of how achievable this goal really is in your life every day, it will keep you on track.
Make a vision board
Collect pictures, mantras, or any other visual to put onto a poster board, sheet of paper, or anything you can hang up. The goal of this is to remind you of your “why” each time you look at it. Maybe it includes pictures of yourself from when you were more in shape, maybe it has positive statements like, “rocks require a ton of pressure before they can become diamonds”. Whatever pushes you to keep working, put that on your vision board.
Chart your progress
If you lost one pound out of the 20 you plan on losing, make a statement about it, don’t ignore your progress and hardwork. If that means you get an extra reward, treat yourself.
Make a visual representation of your goal with a weight loss or other fitness tracker. Seeing a visual representation is crucial since you can’t really see the physical pounds melt off your body. You must remind yourself regularly that you indeed are making progress to inspire you to keep going.Download Chart
7. Cut Yourself Some Slack
The last thing you want to do is get frustrated, beat yourself up, and quit your fitness plan altogether. If you miss a day of exercise, forget to reward yourself, or only give 50% of your effort during a workout, it’s okay! Stay positive and start over tomorrow.
Working out is linked to a multitude of positive effects for your mind and body. It can lower risk of heart attack, diabetes, and obesity, it can make you feel better about how you look, increase “reward” hormones making you feel happier and more energetic, make you stronger, etc.
Working out at home is a great way to save time and money while still doing something good for your mind and body. Get started on your at home workout plan today and see the benefits roll in.