Cord Picks: Favourite home workouts

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Photo by Safina Husein

Using Apps as a Guide

YouTube videos and phone apps have been my go-to sources for home workouts ever since I stumbled into the overwhelming world of fitness. Even though I’ve lost a considerable amount of weight since high school, I still find it difficult to stick to a consistent gym routine. Home workouts have become a necessity for me when my otherwise lazy and unmotivated self would rather binge watch Netflix. There’s less excuses when my workout can take place in my bedroom using a yoga mat, some free weights and a semi-positive attitude. I follow the SWEAT app created by Australian trainer Kayla Itsines, which focuses on a series of body weight exercises that take minimal time to do. I’m also a huge fan of Yoga with Adriene, who serenely guides viewers through various yoga and meditation routines. Jillian Michaels and the YouTube channel Blogilates are great too — the first one yells at you when you need it and the second one is so chipper and peppy that you feel compelled to break a sweat with her.

Emily Waitson/Opinion Editor

 

Plank Variations

It’s a given that running is a great way to exercise your heart and burn some calories. When I can, I like to do a mix of stretches and core training while my heart rate is up after a run. Your muscles being warm from the run is important in helping prevent injury while performing these static stretches. I like to go through a cycle of three plank positions for a more well-rounded core training than simply crunches or sit ups. First I do front plank which requires you to keep your body off the ground, with your weight in your elbows and toes and remaining as straight as a plank of wood (don’t let your back dip down to the floor). Then switch to left and right side plank where you lay on your side with your elbows beneath your shoulder then stack your feet and try to keep your hips in line with your body while you lift them as far off the ground as you can. I try to do at least 30 seconds of each position and go through the cycle three times.

Garrison Oosterhof/Web Director

 

Mindfulness and Meditation

Submerging yourself in the student lifestyle means one of several clichés: money is tight. However you may choose to penny-pinch it’s bound to depend on your priorities and realistically, not all of us are willing to spend $40 plus monthly on a gym membership. This is where home workouts are essential for keeping our minds and bodies sound while enduring the harsh conditions of three hour lectures in Arts 1E1. This is why I turn to yoga, a simple and cost-effective way to tend to those aches and relieve stress. All you need is a yoga mat and a little bit of space for your warrior pose. As well, YouTube videos are very helpful in structuring your practice without paying for a class. I made a commitment in my first year to do at least 15 minutes of stretching and/or mindfulness meditation every morning before I head out and the difference has been life-changing.

Margaret Russell/Lead Reporter

 

Office Chair Yoga:

One of the best activities you can try at home (or in the office) is chair yoga. Yes, as crazy as it sounds, it’s a real thing!  Small exercises like these can be done in your chair or on your bed and can help reduce stress.

First, try a rising sun salute.

As you inhale, raise your arms slowly.

When you exhale, bring your arms to the side. Next inhale, bend forward and bring your arms to the ground. Exhale and fold your arms on the ground. Inhale and resume resting position.

You can also try the “wrists” exercise. Put your arms out straight in front of you, your fingers up, palms away for four breaths. Repeat these steps with palms down. For more information, you can visit the yoga studio that created these exercises “From the Heart Yoga” in Waterdown.

Jazzmine Gabert/Social Media Coordinator

 

Cardio, Strength and Core:

I learned the best home workout in grade seven gym class and it’s something that I’ll always remember throughout my life. The workout is relatively quick and effective.

It is also the perfect combination of cardio, strength and core training. You begin with 20 jumping jacks to get your heart rate going. You follow that up with 20 pushups and squats.

After this, I like to take a two-minute break before beginning the core exercises which include: 15 leg raises, 15 sit-ups and 15 crunches

Although this may seem like a lot to do at first, you can always begin with lower quantities before you work your way up to the higher numbers.

After you are done with the exercises, you finish off the workout with 10 minutes of stretching.

This workout does not only help me feel better physically, but it also relieves a lot of mental stress, especially during exam season.

Pranav Desai/Sports Editor

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