There is only so many YouTube videos you can do during quarantine before you start to really miss your gym. Chances are that your muscles are probably missing your gym, too, as repeating the same workout over and over is not efficient for accomplishing fitness goals.
“Diversity in a workout allows you to reach your goals quicker and not plateau,” said Oscar Smith, who owns a personal training gym in New York City, and has trained celebrities including Katherine McPhee, Tom Brady, Rosario Dawson, and Val Kilmer.
Instead of completing the same HIIT workout video that makes you do 30 burpees, use Smith’s at-home exercise routine and his advice for maximizing your at-home and outside workouts.
How to maximize your at-home workout
Smith, who wrote Natural Strength, recommends getting up early and completing your workout before starting your workday. By doing this, you eliminate the possibility of anything getting in the way of your workout.
In addition to working out in the morning, Smith recommends that you find an isolated place in your home to complete your workout.
“The problem with at-home workouts is that you get distracted quite easily…TV, phone, dog barking, kids, things like that,” Smith said.
Finding a spot in your home away from distractions is useful and Smith even recommends limiting how much you rely on music during your workout, or at least music that you control with your phone. You are distracting yourself every time you want to change the song and pick up your phone to do so.
Smith recommends getting up early to complete this workout, but you can also complete it little by little throughout your work day, if that works better for your work-from-home schedule.
At-home full body workout routine
Cardio and core:
- 3 minutes: Jump rope
- 1 minute: Situps, crunches, oblique crunches
Do this for 10 rounds. This workout will give you 30 minutes of jumping rope and 10 minutes of an ab workout. You should vary the ab exercise each round.
Cardio and push ups:
- 3 minutes: Run up and down one flight of stairs
- 25 reps: Push ups
Do this for 10 rounds. If you are comfortable running on the stairs available to you, this can be an excellent cardio workout. Smith emphasized extreme caution and attention when completing this exercise.
Instead of focusing on abs in this circuit, you can focus on the entire upper body with 25 different variations of push ups. Here are the pushups Smith recommends:
- Regular push ups: Put your feet together and spread your hands out a little bit past shoulder-width apart.
- Incline push ups: Put your feet together and hands on the back of a chair or on the stair railing.
- Decline push ups: Put your feet on the third or second step, depending on your height. Spread out your fingers under your shoulders.
- Tricep push ups: Put your feet together and lay completely down flat on your stomach. Put your fingertips together and out them directly underneath your shoulders. Keeping your elbows locked in to your sides, you are isolating your triceps.
- Diamond push ups: Lay flat on your stomach with your feet shoulder-width apart. Make a diamond or triangle with your hands and place them underneath your breastbone.
- Archer Push Ups: Place hands out wide and keep your feet together. Lean from one side to another. You will feel this exercise in your shoulders.
- Wide-grip push ups: Place hands out wide and straddle feet out, too.
The amount of weight you use for these exercises will vary based upon your strength and fitness goals.
You should do 15 reps of the following exercises:
- Military press
- Side lateral raises
- Front lateral raises
- Hammer curls
- Bicep curls
- Reverse curls
If you don’t have any bars at home for back exercises, you can use towels and dumbbells to complete 15 reps of the following exercises:
- Simulation pull up: If you have a hardwood floor, get down on all fours and place a towel under your knees. Place your hands shoulder-width apart. Use the towel to slide and pull yourself up, simulating a pull up.
- Bent over row
Complete 15 reps of the following exercises:
- Lying flies
- Dumbbell bench press
“In between any exercise that you do, you can add to it to mix up that routine,” Smith said. “My philosophy is you could never do enough cardio or core.”
Smith reccomends adding the following into the above exercise routine:
- Boxer sit ups
- Leg lifts
- Regular or oblique crunches
- Tall, forearm, or side planks
Tips for exercising outside
If you are going to run, Smith recommends that you do it outside. Besides obvious benefits like getting some fresh air and Vitamin D, running outside also keeps you from getting bored and makes you run faster.
Remember when you were younger and would run outside to play sports with your friends as soon as the weather turned nice? Well, Smith recommends you start doing that again as many sports provide great cardio exercise.
If you are able to play sports like tennis, basketball, or racquetball when the weather is nice, that is highly encouraged.
You can also complete any of the exercises outlined above outside, but Smith generally doesn’t use weights when venturing outside with his clients.
“I’ll just use what’s around us and maybe I’ll bring some bands depending on what my goal is for the client,” Smith said about outdoor workouts.
Jennifer Fabiano is an SEO reporter at Ladders.