Exercising at home

No time for a gym membership? How to exercise on your own time.

By TONY HIGGINS
July 19, 2011 09:58
2 minute read.
Yoga

Yoga 311. (photo credit: Courtesy)

Physical exercise gets us into shape and ensures that we stay fit. This is important because it makes us look good, but it also helps us remain healthy and diminishes stress. Getting physically fit is no easy matter, even though physical activity should be an essential part of our way of life. Our sedentary lifestyle, the stresses in modern life and in the workplace make regular exercise a necessity to help keep healthy and alleviate some of the pressures.

The best thing to do is join a fitness center and use its facilities. That way, you get professional instruction and have access to modern and usually expensive equipment.

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But what about those who are too busy and cannot take the time to go to a health club? For them, the next best thing is to exercise at home or in their office. Those with the financial means can acquire the services of a personal trainer.

There is a third option. Many high-rise apartment buildings have a swimming pool and a communal gym. They may also have a lifeguard who doubles as a fitness trainer.

But for those exercising at home on their own, they are their own trainers. They must formulate a fitness program, choose the right exercises and, what is most important, exercise on a regular basis.

Zachi Nahum, head of the professional training department at the Go Active Fitness Center, says, “For most men and women, I strongly recommend training within an organizational framework. But if there is a problem of time, then training at home is second best. To make the most of it, one should know exactly what to expect. There are different exercises for every part of the body. In general, women want to maintain their figure, while most men want to enlarge their muscles. But the main objective should be to keep fit, to maintain the flexibility of all or at least most of the muscles, to activate the body.”

People who want to exercise on their own should realize that they are doing this alone and must have the necessary will and determination. Those training in the gym of their residence will have the necessary equipment. Those training at home will have to buy some basic equipment, such as weights, power lines, push-up bars, stationary bikes and treadmills.

When space is limited, it is advisable to make do with a power line, which develops the muscles in the arms and belly, and a treadmill, which develops the leg muscles. If there is no extra space at all, consider jogging, which is one of the most efficient ways to burn calories. Swimming is also an excellent way burn calories, and it activates nearly all the muscles in the body.

Another good form of exercise is cycling. It is an efficient way to develop the leg and stomach muscles. And during rush hours, bicycling is a quicker and less frustrating way to get to a destination than driving. And that will certainly reduce mental
stress.

What’s what

Cardiovascular exercises strengthen the body by focusing on both the upper and lower body. They include sit-ups, front squats and lifting weights. Calisthenic exercises involve using one’s own body weight for resistance and building body strength and flexibility. These exercises are usually not strenuous and involve using simple, rhythmic movements and do not require much equipment. They include push-ups, pull-ups, squats and jumping jacks.


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