When you’re a mom with young kids to care for, you need to grab your fitness moments wherever you can find them. Getting to the gym may well be a luxury that simply won’t work for you. But that’s no excuse to abandon your fitness plans. In this article, we reveal 5 essential pieces of gear that will allow you to get gym quality at-home workouts at any time of the day or night.
Don’t let the fact that it is one of the least expensive and unobtrusive pieces of exercise equipment on the market fool you. The jump rope is one of the smartest fitness investments you can make. Because it is so compact, you can have a skipping rope on hand wherever you are.
Spending just a few minutes jumping rope will allow you to burn more calories than the same amount of time running on a treadmill, using a rowing machine, or even striding on an expensive elliptical machine. Keep it up for an hour and you will churn through around a thousand calories. That makes skipping a great way to lose weight.
Other benefits of rope jumping include improving the efficiency of your heart and lungs, improving your balance, coordination, and proprioception. It also strengthens your forearms, shoulders, and calf muscles.
You needn’t be intimidated by the thought of rope jumping. If you’re not the coordinated type, simply start off with one-legged skipping for 15 seconds at a time. Then slowly build up to 30, 45, and 60 seconds rounds.
Investing in a $30 set of resistance bands will provide you with the ability to work nearly every resistance exercise that you can do at the gym. Resistance bands come in a range of resistance levels so that you can progressively increase your strength levels. Resistance bands come in many forms but the most common type are tubular in design and have plastic handles on their ends. The set will also come with a door anchor that allows you to simulate cable machine exercises in the gym for great at-home workouts wherever a door is handy. Check here for more home workouts.
As well as being far less expensive than dumbbells and barbells, resistance bands are a lot safer to use. They are also more compact and easier to use. Keep in mind that resistance bands are not toys so you should not let your children play with them. Don’t stretch a band to more than three times its original length and keep it away from sharp objects. When you are exercising with a resistance band, be sure to perform your exercises with a slow, controlled cadence and to go through a full range of motion.
A Fitness Ball
Otherwise known as a Swiss Ball, the fitness ball is a valuable addition to any home gym set up. Fitness balls are usually constructed from a thick plastic-type material and filled with air. The ball is used as a bench to lie on when you are doing exercises. Exercises can be done on the ball while lying on both your stomach and your back. There are also a range of exercises that can be done with the fitness ball held between your legs in order to work your midsection.
The fitness ball is a great way to work your core. The instability that results when you sit on the ball forces your core muscles to work hard to balance your body even when you are doing movements that do not directly work your body.
When shopping for an exercise ball, check to make sure that the ball is constructed from anti-burst material. It should also be inflated to the degree that it feels firm when you touch it. Balls come in different sizes. The right size for your body will see your hips slightly higher than your knees when you sit on it. You can also refer to the following fitness ball height guide:
- Less than 4’8″ = 45 cm ball
- 4’8” to 5’3″ = 55 cm ball
- 5’4” to 5’1″ = 65 cm ball
- 5’10 to 6’4″ = 75 cm ball
Strength training should form the foundation of everyone’s workout program. It will allow you to develop a more functionally fit, evenly developed, powerful body while also toning, shaping, and tightening your muscles. Lifting weights is also an excellent way to lose weight. It will increase your metabolism due to the increased oxygen demand that weight training places on the body. This means that you will be burning more calories both during and after your workout. In addition, every ounce of muscle tissue that you add to your body requires a lot of energy to sustain itself, further increasing your calorie burn.
Investing in an adjustable dumbbell set will allow you to get the benefit of a full range of dumbbells in one set. Adjustable dumbbells consist of a platform that the dumbbell sits on when not in use. The ends of the dumbbell have a number of removable weight plates on its ends. This allows you to select the required weight, which is then lifted from the platform.
Adjustable dumbbells are more affordable than buying each pair of weights separately. They also take up a lot less space in your home. We recommend purchasing a set of adjustable dumbbells that range between 2 and 20 pounds per dumbbell.
A foam roller is a massage tool that allows you to perform self-myofascial release. This is a form of deep tissue massage that you perform by placing the roller between your body and the floor or a wall. Foam rollers are cylindrical, about 18 inches long and made of ABS plastic. Many of them have a series of variously shaped nodules that allow you to reach deep into the muscle tissue to reach your tension and pain points.
Foam rolling will help you to recover from your workout by relaxing the muscles and speeding up circulation. This allows oxygen and nutrients to be fast-tracked to the muscles and removes toxins that have built up during your workout. Foam rolling has shown to be able to lessen the effects of delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS). It is also an excellent way to relax your body in the evening as you wind down for bedtime.