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“No Gym, No Excuse”
By Josh Drummond, DPT, ATC
I’ll be the first one to tell you that I am not the best about following my own advice regarding diet and exercise. I love a great dessert and have a difficult time fitting in a trip to the gym. One of my primary excuses is a common one that I’m sure many people can identify with: “I just don’t have time.” Well, I have news for you – this is not a good excuse. Exercising at home is a great way to help fit workouts into your schedule without spending a lot of money or time. You can exercise when it is convenient, and spend as much time as you have available.
As far as resistive activities go, body-weight exercises are a very practical option. Body-weight exercises are those using no additional weights and minimal equipment. Things like body-weight squats and lunges, push-ups and pull-ups, plyometrics (jumping activities), and core exercises fall into this category. These are all quick, inexpensive and can all be done at home.
In addition to body-weight activities, some inexpensive equipment can be used to do even more. With just a few small items such as an exercise ball, empty milk jugs, a step or staircase, light dumbbells, or resistive bands, even more variation can be used to get a great workout. All of these items are available at local stores and cost very little compared to big pieces of equipment.
Determining what activities to perform can be another big hurdle. Any movement can be performed repeatedly or with resistance to make for a good workout. Something as simple as sitting down and standing back up repeatedly or going up and down a step repeatedly can be an exercise. If needed, certain exercises can be modified for your skill level. For example, if you are unable to do a push up, modify it so you are on your knees instead of on your toes. If that is still too difficult, stand up and put your hands against a wall. Progressively move your feet back to make it harder, then move to the floor when ready. There are endless options for these types of activities, and creativity can discover many more.
With more widely available information, more readily available equipment for home use, and the existence of programs like the Physical Therapy Specialists Clinic Wellness & Prevention Program, it is getting easier to work towards a healthier you and to get help to make the progress you want to see. Remember: the American College of Sports Medicine and the American Heart Association recommend 30 minutes or more of moderately intense cardio at least 5 days per week, 20 minutes or more of vigorous cardio at least 3 days per week, and 8-10 resistive exercises with 8-12 repetitions on at least 2 days per week. If you are looking for some help in learning more about your health and making improvements, call PTSC at 417-926-5699 or visits http://www.ptsconline.com.