There’s nothing better than exercising out in nature. It’s good for your body and soul, and studies show that simply being outdoors improves exercise results. However, living in Texas can make outdoor exercising impossible at times because it’s often too hot to work out in the heat. Exercising at a gym is a good alternative; however, gym memberships can be expensive, and there might not be a gym close enough to your residence to be convenient.
But there’s another option for working out in Texas: exercise in your own home. It doesn’t take much to find a convenient space and some basic equipment to get started. And it’s the perfect alternative when the Texas heat makes it a challenge to be outside. Always talk to your doctor and your podiatrist at Alliance Foot & Ankle before you start any kind of exercise program.
Setting up a Workout Space at Home
If you want to create a home gym, you don’t need a huge space to make it efficient and effective. Depending on your health goals, you can carve out a workout space in a walk-in closet, a hallway, a home office, or even a guest bedroom. Any area of your home or apartment could serve as a workout area, and you can separate that area by setting up physical or visual boundaries to make it feel apart from the rest of the room. Once you’ve decided where you want to exercise, there are some easy ways to follow through on your health goals.
A Treadmill Can Help You Walk Your Way to Health
Walking is one of the single best ways to exercise the body. It can lower your blood pressure, help you lose weight, lower your blood sugar, and build muscle. Your podiatrist may recommend this low-impact exercise while recovering from a foot condition. While a treadmill may seem like a significant expense and take up a lot of space, small, in-home walking pad setups only cost a few hundred dollars.
Explore the World of Online Exercise Videos
If you have very little space and/or budget, exercise videos are a good option. There’s a wide variety of free exercise videos on platforms such as YouTube, as well as subscription-based classes from many companies, including Apple, Fitbit, Peloton, and Nike. Some classes will have low-impact options and even options for people with certain foot conditions or foot pain.
Resistance Bands Are Small and Affordable
If you want another option for working out at home, try resistance bands. These inexpensive bands are used most often for strength training and can make movements more difficult and engage more muscles.
Simple Fitness Exercises
Even if you have no equipment, you can exercise by choosing moves that provide a full-body workout. These can include push-ups, lunges, and squats.
Hire a Personal Trainer
If you can afford it, you may want to consider hiring an in-home personal trainer. This person can develop an exercise program that’s tailored to your needs and your level. Even investing in a few sessions can help you get started on the right foot.
Preventing Injuries While Exercising at Home
When you’re working out at home, you’re in charge of your health, and you need to create an environment and an exercise plan that are safe for your body. If you want to stay in shape, it’s important to prevent injuries. Here are some best tips for doing just that:
Start With the Right Shoes
Make sure you choose the right shoes for the exercises you’re doing. If you’re walking or running on a treadmill, you’ll likely want a different type of shoe than the kind you’d use for basic fitness exercises. Additionally, worn-out shoes or shoes you’ve had for over six months might not offer the right amount of padding or support.
Warn up First and Start Slow
When you’re exercising at home, you still need to warm up before getting into your workout routine. If you don’t stretch or warm up your muscles, it’s easier to sustain injuries. It’s also important to start your workout program slowly. Take time to build up the difficulty of your exercise and the length of time you spend doing it. Rushing into an extreme workout is a great way to get injured.
Exercising at Home With Foot Pain or Other Foot Issues
If you’re doing at-home exercises after foot surgery, or you have a specific foot condition that makes it difficult to exercise, it’s important to speak with your podiatrist about a workout routine that can keep you healthy and not exacerbate your foot pain.
Try a Stationary Bike
If your foot pain doesn’t involve your ankle, you may be able to engage in a home workout routine using a stationary bike. While this might seem like an expensive option, you can buy one of these bikes for under $200. Riding a stationary bike can help you burn calories and strengthen your heart and lungs. It provides an aerobic workout but puts less stress on your joints.
Focus on Your Abs
You can increase your flexibility and strength by doing crunches and sit-ups. These types of exercises are non-weight-bearing, so they’re good for post-foot surgery workouts.
Use Weights While Seated
When you’re looking for exercise that doesn’t involve the feet, weight lifting can be a good option. If you’re a walker or runner and sidelined by foot pain, lifting weights can offer a good cross-training option.
Although you use your feet and ankles for some yoga moves, some positions do not put stress on these areas. Consider talking to a yoga instructor or watching yoga videos specifically for workouts that take pressure off your feet.
Exercising at home can be economical, fast, and convenient. But in order to reap the benefits while preventing injury, you need to work with a Texas podiatrist who can help you establish a safe and healthy exercise plan for you and your feet.