Last year, I set up an
online exercise studio for people who want to improve their balance, feel
stronger, and move more easily.
When I tell people
about the Studio, they sometimes say things like…
“That sounds like such
a great idea, but I’m not the kind of person who could do that.”
“I’m not motivated
enough to exercise by myself.”
“I wish I could be
more disciplined to do videos like that.”
Every time I reply by
saying, “It’s not about you, or how motivated or disciplined you are…. It’s
about how easy you make it for yourself. You can do it; you just need to make
So, here’s how to make
it easy and set yourself up for success with exercising at home.
First of all, why does
exercising at home matter?
Use It or Lose It!
This is what I am
saying to anyone who will listen at the moment:
If we aren’t using our
muscles, we are losing strength. If we aren’t putting strain on our bones, we
are losing bone mineral density. And if we aren’t challenging our balance, we
are losing our balance capabilities.
What’s So Great
About Exercising at Home?
Exercising at home is
brilliant for so many reasons. And, right now, it’s the only option for many of
You can do it any time
– whenever it’s convenient for you. Even when you have only 5 or 10 minutes to spare.
We’ve been slightly
brainwashed by the fitness industry into thinking that, unless we do a whole
hour of exercise in one go, it’s not enough.
Any exercise is better
than none, and there’s lots of evidence that doing small bouts of exercise
throughout the day is better than doing one longer session and then doing
nothing for the rest of the day.
If you are having
trouble with your balance, then it’s even better news. The best way to improve
your balance is to do a few minutes of balance exercise
most days. You don’t need much equipment, and it’s very easy to
do balance exercises at home.
Whatever kind of
exercise you want to do, even 5 or 10 minutes is great. If you are doing the
right sort of exercise, at the right level for you, you will feel better after.
You will feel physically better, more energised, and more positive.
So, how can you make
exercising at home easy?
Don’t Try and Go
Everyone we know who
has been successful with home exercise has had support. Whether it’s a trainer
who comes to the house (not possible right now, of course) or following a
program, having that guidance and support is crucial.
Books and printed
programs can be great, and if they work for you, keep using them! Many people
find videos to be more helpful though. You can hear the instructions and see
the demonstration as well. Plus, it feels like someone is in the room
There are so many great
videos online (and lots of terrible ones too, so be careful!). You can look on
YouTube, websites, or various apps. Make sure that your instructor is qualified
and experienced and that the exercises are at the right level for you.
Here’s a short video
you can do now – enjoy these quick exercises to relieve stiffness in your upper
back, neck, and shoulders.
The smaller the
Seriously! The two
minutes of exercise that you actually do are infinitely better than an hour of
exercise that you planned but didn’t quite manage.
Make it as easy as
possibly to succeed. Plan to stand on one leg for 30 seconds while your eggs
boil. That’s it!
You will start to
develop a habit and that’s where the magic begins. You will find yourself
wanting to do more, and it will soon snowball into something bigger.
Don’t Rely on Your
Yes, exercising is
good for your brain and your memory, but you might still not be ready to rely
on it! So, set reminders (yes, even for that 30 second one-leg stand).
Reminders can include:
- Creating a calendar note.
- Putting a notification on your phone.
- Sticking a post-it note on your fridge or laptop.
Or do them all –
whatever works for you!
So, you’ve got a
program to follow, your reminder worked, and you’re ready to exercise.
But, if you don’t have
everything you need in one place, you will spend more than the time planned for
the exercise trying to organise yourself.
Get it ready in
advance, and you’ll be straight into it next time!
Here’s how to set
yourself up for success:
- Decide where you are going to exercise.
- Have your equipment ready in one place (including any
clothing, e.g., shoes).
- Have your book/ printed program/ tablet or other
device in the right place.
- If using a computer or tablet, make sure it’s charged
- Save passwords, links, etc. so you can get to your
successes (yes, even 30 seconds of exercise) is crucial.
Some of our members
put stickers on their calendar every time they exercise, others reward their
efforts afterwards by doing something they enjoy (drinking coffee with the
newspaper, calling a friend or checking on their garden).
At the end of the week
or month they might reward themselves with something more substantial. But it’s
the immediate rewards that are most important for imprinting these habits. Find
something that’s meaningful for you and keep doing it.
the Issue After All – Set Yourself Up for Success!
The people I work with
are relieved when they realise it’s not about how motivated they are. It’s a
great feeling when you understand it’s about making it easy for yourself and
setting yourself up for success.
If you want to exercise from home, take a look at the Studio from Vida Wellness.
It’s an online exercise studio for people who want to improve their balance and posture, feel stronger, and move more easily. Members enjoy an extensive Video Library, community support, and advice from specialist instructors.
What could you do to
make it easier to exercise at home? Do you need more support or a program to
follow? Could you set your environment up better? Join the conversation below!