For fitness enthusiasts, creating a workout routine is the easy bit. Following through on those plans, however, is where you need to put in mental and physical effort. If you decide to achieve your fitness goals from your home, you'll need to double down on your commitment and consistency levels.
However, working out from home doesn't have to be a hard, soul-sucking experience.
In this comprehensive read, we'll first explain why you've been struggling with implementing a fitness routine at home. Then, we'll uncover the research-backed tips and tricks that'll help you crush your goals within the four walls of your home.
Why working out at home can feel tougher than at the gym?
With a home fitness routine, you can save money from your gym membership fee and commuting time. However, home workouts can feel harder because:
Self-motivating yourself can be challenging
Your home is a safe space where you can do whatever you want. However, the comfort it provides can make it difficult to pick yourself up, head to a section of your home, and start your fitness routine. Even if you love the mode of exercise and you have all day, sticking to a home fitness routine will require willpower.
There are distractions at every corner
So, you've packed your fitness gear and are heading towards a secluded part of your home. But a million things can take away your attention before you even begin using your recumbent bike. From your kids (or parents), dogs, TV, visitors, or literally any other thing, home distractions are one of the toughest things to deal with.
There's no accountability
Unlike out-of-home fitness, there's no one looking over your shoulders or pushing you to crush your fitness goals in the four walls of your home. You have to do all of that by yourself.
Many fitness enthusiasts become complacent when there's no guide or instructor to lead them. In turn, this leads to fewer reps or wrong rep sets.
10 Ways to Commit to a Home Fitness Routine
Here are the top ways to overcome the challenges of working out from home:
Recreate the feeling of being in a gym
Set up the equipment and materials you need for your routine before you get started. This includes arranging everything you need in backpacks with bottle holders, clearing your space, and getting your sound speaker. By doing this, you'll mentally stimulate your mind to think of your home as a personal gym.
Placing these visual cues shortly before you start your fitness routine is also a great way to deal with distractions. According to Denise Frost, a Harvard-affiliated therapist, putting equipment and cues that mimic that of a gym is a good idea for home workouts.
Avoid making excuses
As we've established, there'll always be responsibilities and distractions that can derail you from your performing your fitness routine. However, if you're going to have any success, you need to be intentional and throw out the excuses.
An easy way to stay on track is to set a daily or weekly reminder on when you want to start your fitness routine. If you need something more flexible, you can try giving yourself time to sort out whatever responsibilities you have.
Research shows that if you put in the work to exercise at the same time daily, your fitness routine will become a habit to you.
Take baby steps
Another trick that helps people follow through with their fitness routines is to go easy. For example, instead of a 30-minute warm-up, opt for a 10-minute run and then rest. When you break up your workout routine into bits, starting becomes much easier.
Studies show that you don't need to be a workaholic to achieve your fitness goals at home. Small exercises can make a clear-cut difference. Also, the total time you spend grinding it out isn't as important as what steps make up your fitness routine, and you do them.
Get a fitness partner and rely on your community
There's nothing quite like having workout buddies to go through your home fitness routine with you. They'll give you the push you need to crush your daily or weekly goals, and scientists have backed these claims. In turn, you can also keep them accountable.
If you feel lonely at home, you can turn to either your real-world or virtual connections for motivation.
Write and visualize your goals daily
Virtually every fitness enthusiast starts working out to achieve some goal or objective. However, it's easy to forget this when you're at home and basically pushing yourself to achieve them.
To ensure you stay consistent with your routine, start with the end in mind. That means, first ensure that your goals are realistic, specific, measurable, achievable, and time-bound. For example, a goal to keep fit isn't going to do you much good because there's no timeframe for it.
However, one that states you want to lose 10 pounds in two months will be a great goal to have.
Then, write them down. Doing this will help you recall and focus on the important details of your objective or overall goal.
Next, keep them in strategic positions around your home and workout area. For example, you can write your goals on sticky notes and place them on your fridge or wall.
Finally, before you start your workout routine, close your eyes, and visualize how reaching the goal will feel.
Keep track of your progress
Sticking to your home fitness routine can look harder when it seems like you're not achieving your goals. At that moment, some fitness enthusiasts quit. But in the real sense, that's the time to muster up the strength and continue.
To keep tabs on your fitness progress, you can get a tracker. With one on your wrist, belt, or ankle, you'll have all the information you need about each set and your entire routine. These devices also provide comparative data on your day-to-day or week-to-week performance.
Another way to stay on top of your home fitness progress is to create a chart and record the activities you performed for the day. That way, you won't miss out on any critical fitness step, even if there's no one to spot it.
Keeping track of your progress also makes it easy to share your fitness routine with your workout buddy or community.
Mix up your exercises and make them fun
Research shows that exercise can boost your mood, particularly when you're within your ‘space’. However, no one says you have to make your routine boring and painful just because you're at home. For many enthusiasts, this false mindset arrives because of their intense drive to achieve workout goals.
While it's perfectly fine to be passionate about your goals, don't make your fitness routine all about them. To increase your chances of sticking to your workout plan, you should enjoy the exercises you perform.
For example, instead of focusing on only lifting weights, you can also ride a recumbent bike. If you like running, you can also jog lightly around your workout area.
A reward system is one of the most effective ways of dealing with low motivation, especially while working out at home. It reinforces the mind to want something for sticking to a workout plan.
For some fitness enthusiasts, the final goal of working out could be the reward of putting in the effort. However, most people need other things like movie time, a massage, or cash rewards.
Pick whatever reward works for you, but ensure it's something that you enjoy.
Plan ahead and realize that slip-ups are possible
On your journey to achieve your fitness goal, every step won't be a walk in the park. Some days, you won't have the motivation to work out. Other times, distractions will make it almost impossible to get your workout plan going, even for highly motivated exercisers.
When those situations happen, don't be hard on yourself or turn into a motivation junkie. Instead, use your setback to bounce back to consistency. The days you skip are also feedbacks.
Take breaks and rest
Don't shoot for the moon when setting your workout plan or routine. In the end, you'll need a day or two off to relax and rethink your strategy. Therefore, ensure your workout routine is spaced out.
For example, motivated exercisers put in the work three to five times weekly. Others who have a lot of things to do work out twice or three times weekly. If none of these options appeal to you, you can start small and pick up the number of days later.
If you're serious about crushing your fitness goals, you'll try out the tips and tricks we've highlighted on how to stick to a home routine. While you're at it, be sure to stay hydrated and remind yourself of the reasons you want to work out from home.