Most people admit they could live healthier lifestyles, but it’s difficult to commit to a gym membership. Who has the time? By the time you’ve finished work, picked up the kids from school, and hit the grocery store, you’re too burned out and ready to go to bed. And even if you have time for the gym, you might find that it’s always crowded and you’re always having to fight for a spot on the machines.
Thankfully, you can still be very fit even if you never make a single trip to the gym. Here are 5 ways you can be healthier without having a gym membership.
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1. Do Calisthenics
Gym rats will try and make you believe that the only way to build muscle is to lift free weights. But you can build muscle at home all by doing calisthenics exercises—after all, what’s a better free weight than your own body?
You’d be amazed at how much upper body muscle you can gain by doing pushups, and how much lower body muscle you can develop by doing variations of squats. Other exercises you can do include:
- Bench dips (just use a windowsill or sturdy chair)
- Ham-glute raises
- Upside-down shoulder press
- Pull-ups (just use a pull-up bar)
When you do calisthenics, you can do strength training from the comfort of your own home whenever you feel like it. You can even use calisthenics to stay in shape while you’re traveling.
2. Go Running
If cardio is your preferred kind of workout, get a pair of running shoes and go on jogs around your neighborhood. A 15 or 20-minute run is all you need to burn a significant number of calories each day. If you really want to push yourself and burn even more calories, opt for sprints rather than light running—sprinting burns a huge number of calories.
Make sure you get a running shoe that fits you well—too tight and you’ll hurt your feet, too loose and you could twist your ankle. You should also invest in some extra running gear and equipment, like protective socks, thicker insoles, and fitness trackers. All these will protect your feet and help you achieve more production runs.
If you’re going to be running after dark, be sure you wear reflective material so you remain visible to cars. Get a pair of running shoes that have reflective material or get earphones for running that have a reflective cord. Also be sure to wear bright colors, like orange or yellow, when you’re running at night.
3. Do Yoga
Meditative practices, like yoga, maybe super effective in helping you clear your head and loosen up your body. By making yoga a morning, afternoon, or evening habit, you can significantly boost your mental clarity and keep your body feeling perky.
There are lots of online tutorials that can teach you the basics of yoga, or you can sign up for a yoga class. Once you’ve learned the basics, you can buy a yoga mat and practice at home. Yoga mats are helpful for doing a wide variety of exercises, like crunches, push-ups, and pelvic floor exercises.
4. Get a Standing Desk
Do you work a desk job? Sitting down for hours at a time is not good for your health, and it might even cause you to suffer from back pain. Think about buying a standing desk to make your desk job better.
The best standing desk is able to transition from “sitting” to “standing” mode so you can work in your chair and on your feet. With a standing desk, you can eliminate back and neck pain and you can also shake off the after-lunch sluggishness that makes you want to go to sleep at your desk.
5. Use a Healthy Food Service
It’s not how hard you exercise, but what you eat that really determines how much weight you’re going to lose. Heck, you can lose weight just by eating healthy and not even working out. Of course, maintaining a healthy diet is a lot easier said than done.
One of the biggest challenges that would-be dieters have is picking the right foods to eat—some people don’t know how to cook, what to cook, or which ingredients to buy. If that describes you, you should consider signing up for a health food service. These services will send healthy ingredients right to your doorstep, with simple recipes that show you how to cook tasty and nutritious meals. They’re also a great way to develop your cooking skills!
“As with any strenuous activity, make sure you are physically ready. Wear the proper gear, stretch, and apply kinesiology tape for muscle support. Don’t forget to cool down, rest, and let your body recover afterward.”
If you don’t have time or money for the gym, toss out your gym membership and use one of these 5 effective health options instead!