If there’s one thing the last few months have taught us is that the ‘new normal’ will be keeping us company indefinitely. Work from home has caught on, social distancing is the way ahead, reunions are now on Zoom calls and content-driven OTT platforms are a saviour. Fitness enthusiasts like me are sorely missing our gym sessions but, thanks to some easy home props for workout, our plans are right on track.
Sometimes even the best meaning fitness goals hit a roadblock due to time and accessibility constraints. Treadmill, dumbbells, plates, medical balls and other types of fancy gym equipment aren’t always available and seem like a huge investment too. During such times it’s prudent to turn to some humble home props for workout that are just as, if not more, effective. Let me show you how.
You might’ve despised lugging heavy bags in school and college but they’re one of the best home props for workout. You can tie same sized books together and use them as support blocks during Yoga. Heavy coffee table books, encyclopaedias and even newspaper stacks can suffice for plates and help in abs and weight training. Hold one each on your shoulder to replace dumbbells and perform squats. There’s a lot you can do with them.
Couch and Chairs
Your reason to invest in a couch must be to ‘veg out’ on it but do include it in some heavy to intense workout. Mountain climbers performed while keeping your hands on the couch are a great cardio workout. It can be a great support for side planks and glute bridges. Lie down half on the couch and use it as a bench for chest presses. My favourite are triceps dips and am also working on incline and decline push-ups. Chairs can be used for step-ups.
The wall is a friend you can rely on, literally. Wall push-ups are a great way for beginners to develop upper body strength before going for half or full push-ups. Many Yoga poses like Shirshasan, Chakrasan, etc use the wall for achieving balance until you can perform them without aid. Want to mix and match? Try using filled water bottles, milk or soup cans for dumbbells and perform them along with wall-sit. This works on your core too.
Grains for ankle and wrist weights
Grains stuffed in socks or tightly wrapped in any kind of cloth that can be tied around your wrist or ankle is a potential weight. Cardio workouts like running, walking or cycling with ankle weights are intense and need lot more effort. Wrist weights are great for arm and shoulder exercises. Personally, I like air punches and perform them in addition to jumps or squats or both.
Honestly, I used to be confused with the different kinds of balls used in a gym. While they do have specific uses, you cannot rule out the killer workout a simple basketball can give you. Borrow your kids’ ball (or buy one or use a spare, whatever) and use it for lower body workout. Hold the ball over your head or squeeze it between your knees and do squats. You can also use it for couple workouts by standing back-facing and passing it over to each other with a semicircle round. Try anything that works for you.
I’ve managed to lose 3 kgs during the lockdown after hitting a plateau for more than 6 months. Where there is a will, there is indeed a way. Try indoor running if you can’t go out to jog. Stairs workout is one of the best ways to burn calories. Skipping, like I’ve mentioned earlier, improves co-ordination as well as balance. These are easily available home props for workout, right?
Let your hair down with your kids and dance the blues away while also getting fit. So you see, you can work hard and still have fun. Isn’t that awesome?