5 Easy Home Exercises to Keep You Healthy and Fit this Winter

Don’t let the cold get you down! These workout moves will keep you grooving from your living room.

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Feeling a bit lethargic at the thought of freezing temps and shorter days? You’re not alone. But exercise can help. Studies show that low-intensity exercise can actually reduce symptoms of fatigue by up to 65 percent and increase energy by 20 percent. In other words, the key to reviving your energy is moving more, not less.

Even if you’re stuck at home this winter, you can still stay active. Try these moves for breaking a sweat from your living room, bedroom or basement.

1. Push-ups

This old-school exercise is a classic for a reason—it works the upper body and core at the same time! Start from your knees and work your way up to push-ups on your toes. You can also add in shoulder taps between push-ups, try decline push-ups (where your feet are planted on a raised surface) or go for up-down push-ups (where you start in a high plank and lower to your elbows, then push back up).

2. Squats

Squats are a versatile lower-body exercise that can be modified in many different ways. The basic exercise involves standing with your feet about hip-width apart and lowering your butt toward the ground as though sitting in a low chair. You can also bring your feet together to do a narrow squat, or take your feet wider for a sumo squat. Add weights or try jump squats or in-and-out squats (where you jump from a narrow squat to a hip-width squat and back).

Quick Tip: Keep your energy up throughout your workouts by sipping pre-workout or an energy drink before you get moving. You can also eat energy bars and snacks throughout the day. For a quick burst of power, look to caffeine. For more sustained energy, turn to protein sources, nuts and fruit—on their own or in bar or snack-ball form!

3. Lunges

Target your quads, hamstrings and glutes with lunges, which involve standing with your feet together, then stepping far forward with one foot and bending your front knee to lower your body closer to the ground. You then return to a standing position and repeat the movement with the opposite leg. To do reverse lunges, step backwards instead and lower your body to the ground. Add weights or use bodyweight alone.

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4. Planks

Whether from your hands or your elbows, planks are great for working the core. With a high plank (from the hands), you can add in mountain climbers (where you bring your knees to your chest in a jog) or row with dumbbells. With a low plank (from your elbows), you can do hip dips (where you rotate your hips, lowering your right hip to the ground, then lowering your left hip to the ground).

Quick Tip: If you’re trying to build or maintain muscle, protein is essential. (In fact, it’s one of the three key macronutrients and is important for everyone, regardless of activity level.) To help you meet your daily protein goals, consider integrating protein powder or protein bars into your diet.

5. Jumping Jacks, Burpees or Jumping Rope

Get in a bit of heart-pumping activity by doing jumping jacks, burpees or skipping rope for several minutes to start or end your workout.

Quick Tip: After exercising, you might want to take a supplement to aid in recovery and alleviate muscle soreness. Try glutamine, an amino acid that you can take as a powder or tablet after working out and before bed.

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And if you crave a bit more structure, consider subscribing to a fitness app like Peloton (no bike or treadmill necessary), Nike Training Club or Lauren Simpson Fitness. Also look to gyms in your area for classes on Instagram Live or Zoom.

Want more info on sports supplements to make the most of your workouts? Visit healthyplanetcanada.com.

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Originally Published in Best Health Canada