Home Gym Ideas

Workout equipment

Can’t go to the gym? Make your own at home, using these suggestions.

  1. Make your own weights. Use canned goods or fill recycled milk jugs with water or sand.
  2. Make your own resistance bands using old nylons or tights.
  3. Walk up and down your stairs to replace the step machine workout. Play some music to keep you going. Increase the workout by adding a new song each time.
  4. A jump rope is a great option for cardio workouts at home. It’s more affordable than a treadmill or exercise bike.
  5. Use free smart phone apps or computer programs to plan or track your workouts.
  6. Use an exercise ball instead of bench and exercise equipment. Use the ball to do crunches, push-ups, chest presses, and more.
  7. Need a yoga mat? Use a towel during stretching, yoga, or core exercises. It also prevents your hands and feet from sliding during exercises.

Sources:
Medline Plus, medlineplus.gov; Eat Smart, Move More, eatsmartmovemoreva.org

Physical Activity: Break Time

work outNew research on physical activity supports the importance of Break Time— moving periodically throughout the day. Research done at Australia’s Baker Heart and Diabetes Institute, suggests that sitting for long periods of time is associated with health risks, including cancer risks. This even applied to people who are regularly active.

The studies showed that biomarkers for chronic diseases such as cancer, heart disease, and diabetes such as waist circumference, insulin resistance, and inflammation can all be lowered with activity breaks as short as one to two minutes.

Practical tips for taking many movement breaks throughout the day:

  • Set a timer on your computer or phone to remind you every 60 minutes it’s time to get up and move.
  • “Walk with me.” Need to discuss something with a co-worker? Ask him or her to join you for a walk while you hash it out.
  • Keep light weights or a strength band in your office to use while talking on the phone or reading e-mail.
  • Use your office and/or office wall to do simple things like stretches, leg lifts, or marching in place.

Adapted from reports from the American Institute for Cancer Research Annual Research Conference, 11/ 3/2011.

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