With gyms opening up again, it’s important to remember that they’re one of the highest risks in terms of spreading coronavirus. So whether you’re a seasoned exercise pro or just wanting to get started, home workouts have soared in popularity and may be the perfect plan for you. Depending on your goals, being consistent and pushing yourself can have you seeing just as much progress at home as in the gym. Here is a guide for how to work out at home.

1. Set SMART goals.

You won’t get anywhere if you don’t know where you’re going. This means setting SMART goals, like losing 10 pounds by the end of the summer, or being able to do 20 pushups at the end of the month. These types of goals are what drive your day to day efforts. If you just say you’re going to start working out, what’s pushing you to keep going and know when you’ve made it?

2. Follow a workout plan.

You can either do some research and create one yourself, or find a free plan online, offered by many health and fitness influencers. But creating one yourself is just as effective when you work out at home. The point of this is to show up to your workout session each day with a solid plan. Today, I’m going to run a mile then work out my legs. Tomorrow, I’ll bike for 30 minutes and work out my arms. You get the picture. Without a weekly plan, you’re less likely to push yourself as hard as you would otherwise. It’s also less overwhelming this way. Stick to the plan, work hard, and feel accomplished. 

3. Keep it simple. 

One of the best things you can do for both your cardiovascular health and mental health is simply getting outside in nature and getting your step count up through walking or jogging. Nature acts as a natural stress reliever when paired with the endorphins from exercise. Plus, this is great for your wallet because it’s free! No need to buy a gym membership to use the cardio equipment, or subscribe to an expensive online workout program if that’s not your thing. Get outside daily and get it done, first thing in the morning if you can. This way, you don’t have time to talk yourself out of it, and you feel accomplished the rest of the day. 

4. Get the whole family or your friends involved. 

Working out with a partner is not only more fun, it’s more effective. A study found that 95% of those who started a weight-loss program with friends completed the program. This was compared to a 76%  completion rate for those who exercised and tried to lose weight alone. Additionally, the group who worked out with friends was 42% more likely to keep the weight off. Even if weight loss isn’t your goal, working out with friends or family can help you push a little harder or  run another mile. Plus, it’s a great way to bond with the whole family. This can mean getting outside and playing a game of basketball with the kids, or going for a family bike ride. Get creative, because the more fun your workout is, the less it will feel like a chore. 

With these tips on how to work out at home, you don’t need to break the bank to get some great workouts in and make progress toward your goals. You can stay safe amidst the pandemic, get fit and enjoy the process.