The simplest formula to lose weight at home is a to maintain a healthy diet and get regular exercise. However, finding time and space to exercise can be a challenge, especially living the city life where living spaces are small and daily schedules are always filled up. One of the best ways to make sure you get regular exercise is to create practical space to exercise at home. I’ve been living the city life for a good many years now and have learned quite a few tricks to make the most of small living spaces to ensure I always have somewhere to work out. Even now, my family resides in less than 800 sq ft (plus a small rickety one-car garage), yet we’ve still managed to make space for cardio, weight training, and guided video workouts. It may take some sacrifice of valuable space, but making sure we can always stay active is priority number one! Especially in Seattle, where 8-9 months out of the year are filled with grey skies, muddy streets, puddle-filled parks, and a number of other potentially discouraging reasons to not exercise outside. Don’t get discouraged, get prepared! Make sure you have options to workout at home when time is short, weather isn’t good, or you just aren’t feeling like making the trip to the gym.
Make Rooms Multi-Purpose
The living room is a place to relax, play and learn with children, watch TV, or lounge on your rest day. However, it can also double as a workout space. It can be pretty easy (and cheap) to make the living room double as a space to do guided exercise videos such as those that you can find on YouTube or buy on disc. You can do this in three steps by clearing central space, storing workout accessories in an inconspicuous space, and using technology such as Google ChromeCast to make sure you can watch any videos you want on your entertainment system. To transform our living room, we first made the decision that we no longer needed a coffee table so that we could clear out the central space in the room. Not only has this made the living room more open, but it has rid of us a place that honestly was just a major clutter collection zone. Next, we created a small space in an inconspicuous corner to store workout accessories including a couple of gym mats and a box with dumbbells and a couple medicine balls. The gym mats even double as play mats for children. Last, we purchased a Google ChromeCast, a seriously amazing extension of our devices and entertainment system for only $35. This enabled us to use our smart phones to find guided workout videos online and then immediately cast them to our entertainment system. In addition to making our workouts easier, this little device has opened up a whole new world of possibilities for entertainment options in our home. With these three changes, our living room can now turn into a functional workout space in just a couple of minutes.
Make Exercise Equipment a Permanent Fixture in Your Home
The other alternative is to make cardio equipment part of the living space. This is a technique that’s definitely necessary if you are really limited on space, as we are, but also can help provide an easy way to exercise any time. A couple of years ago we added a Nautilus U616 Upright Cycle to a spot in our living room where it’s easy to see the TV. The footprint of an upright cycle is small compared to a treadmill, elliptical machine, rowing machine, or other bigger equipment, so it works great even in a small space. Since adding this to our living room it has become my go-to exercise and is used frequently. It’s also really handy for a warm-up before other exercises. The best part is that you can turn on the TV and get caught up on last night’s shows or the politics of the day while getting exercise. You do have to sacrifice some space and it might not be a perfect fit aesthetically, but it makes exercising easy anytime so the benefits outweigh the sacrifices you’ll make, and it’s easy to roll out of the room if you have company.
The Right Equipment for Weight Training at Home
One of my favorite weight training books, The Body Sculpting Bible For Men, contains an excellent six-week weight training program that can be done with just a set of adjustable dumbbells and a bench. If you get a set of adjustable dumbbells and a small bench that inclines, you can follow their entire routine and get full-body workouts while only taking up a small amount of space. I have tried a few different adjustable dumbbells over time, but about a year ago I upgraded to the Bowflex Select Tech 552 which have been absolutely awesome. They are so easy to use, comfortable for lots of exercises, look good while taking up minimal space, and they are a very solid design that doesn’t shift or rattle around. I was able to transform an area in my garage with a weight bench and the adjustable dumbbells and now am able to perform complete full-body workouts in a small space.
As I mentioned earlier, maintaining a healthy diet and exercise routine is the simplest formula to losing weight at home. A lot of people struggle with finding the time to exercise, but that can be easily remedied by creating practical spaces to work out at home. If you can create an easy way to get cardio and weight training done at home, you’ll find it easier to work out more often and achieve your weight loss goals. You might even find, as I have, that a gym membership is no longer necessary when you can get all of the exercise you need at home.