Marie Claire gets the nod from its audience. When you purchase through links on our site, we may earn a commission on some of the items you choose to purchase.
According to PT Krissy Cela.
As the cost of living continues to rise, you’re not alone if you’ve been Googling how to exercise at home. It’s a more budget-friendly way to get in a sweat than going to the gym, and it can be just as good a workout. So, ask: do you really know how to do so effectively?
Sounds like an obvious question, sure, and you probably think you do after the occasional two years where we could only work out at home (yes, we did more Joe Wick YouTube workouts than we care to admit – thanks, pandemic) . But if you’re looking to add a little more structure to your living room sweat sessions, you’ve come to the right place.
We’ve picked the brain of the famous personal trainer and founder of Tone and sculpt Krissy Cela on how to make sure you actually get a good session in – without leaving the house. As the pandemic showed, there really is no harm in opting for home workouts, as they can be just as good for you.
Still, there are some important things that it’s important to make sure you get right. Read on for her tricks, tips and advice—essentially your complete guide to working out at home. Don’t miss our guide to how to work out for free while you’re here.
How to exercise from home: your complete guide
First and foremost: are people really Are you choosing to work out at home as the cost of living rises? According to new statistics from MyVitamins, yes – many choose home workouts and exercise guides over gym sessions.
So why do people choose at home versus the gym? Aside from the obvious—energy prices are at record highs and everyone is canceling subscriptions to help manage the pressure—Cela shares that they now know working out from home can be both effective and convenient.
Not to mention it’s very comfortable. “If you have a really busy job, your gym isn’t nearby, or you’re really busy with family and personal commitments, a home workout is just more realistic than going to the gym,” she explains.
Can working out at home be as effective as a gym session?
It depends on the home training, according to PT. “The past year has really dispelled some myths about working out from home – it’s no longer seen as the ‘easy’ option. In fact, it can be really effective,” she shares.
But she stresses that your results will of course depend on the type of exercise you choose, the home gym equipment you have on hand and the intensity you aim for as well.
“Basically, a home workout can be just as effective as a gym session – it can get you both strong and mobile, and really make a difference to your mental health too,” she explains.
Similarly, the pandemic has highlighted the success of the little and often approach, in Cela’s opinion. “It turns out you don’t have to spend hours running on a treadmill or sweating it out on the cross trainer,” she shares.
This is how you train from home: 9 tips for a fail-safe session
1. Invest in a jump rope
They are a simple, cheap and effective piece of kit, according to PT, and a workout you can do in the garden, at home or wherever you have space to jump in one place. “Skipping tests your stamina, endurance and is a HIIT, cardio and lower body burner as well,” she explains.
In other words, get ready to feel your hamstrings and glutes sing. Her advice is to keep an eye out for specific skipping challenges – on her Tone & Sculpt app they have a whole host of skipping challenges designed to get your heart rate up.
TechRise Jump Rope, £5.49, Amazon
2. Schedule your workouts
Another super simple but effective way to make sure you nail your home workouts is to, well, actually make sure you do them. When it’s just a few steps from your bedroom to the living room, the temptation to snooze that alarm can be oh so real.
Cela’s advice? Schedule your sessions so that the temptation to skip is less. “It’s really easy to put off home workouts, or even just lose track of time to work or other commitments,” she shares.
Try this: set a reminder or an alert—preferably at the same time every day, she says—so you know it’s time to stop what you’re doing and start exercising. – The more you schedule, the more habitual it becomes – soon it’s second nature,” she continues. Exercise motivation has never looked so easy.
3. Choose a training plan to follow
Again, this sounds obvious, but many of you may just randomly choose your workout. This is totally fine, but if you want to see progress or make sure you’re motivated, Cela says having a plan to follow is one of the most important things.
“I can’t stress this enough,” she shares. “Even as an exerciser, I make sure to have a plan when I exercise. Trying to exercise without one is setting you up for failure. You might spend time scrolling or just rolling out,” she says. “As much as all movement is important, you need a plan to really maximize your training time,” she explains.
You will thank yourself later.
4. Have your training area ready in advance
You might not have thought about this one but it’s surprisingly effective – trust us.
“Lay out your mat the night before, get your equipment ready, or keep a water bottle by your side,” advises the PT. It’s not a luxury everyone can afford, but if you can designate a space for your workouts at home, even better, she says.
“You’re just more likely to actually exercise and stick to an exercise program if your home exercise area is ready and prepared,” she explains.
5. Mix it up
Variety is the spice of life and all that. Cela’s best tip for avoiding boredom in home training? Make sure you try new things regularly.
“If you love bodyweight training, why not try a HIIT session or short finishers in the form of an AMRAP (as many rounds as possible) or EMOM (every minute on the minute)?” she asks.
This type of workout means you can pick a few exercises (like squats, burpees, and press-ups) and put them in a circuit for a certain amount of time. Look – simple.
6. Post your gym package
Another seriously simple one, but it works. “I find it really useful to put on my gym kit in the morning or even just wear a sports bra before my workout,” explains Cela.
Why? “It means I’m more likely to work out when it’s time instead of thinking too much about changing out of my regular clothes,” she shares. Check out our health editor’s favorite workout leggings, sports bras and running shoes while you’re here.
7. Embrace the resistance bands
Cela’s favorite piece? Oh yes – and especially for home training. “Buy some resistance bands,” she advises. “Honestly, I can’t recommend them enough. They are so versatile and can be used for upper, lower and full body workouts as well.”
Not sure which one to buy? Do some research, but know that they normally come in a pack of different resistances, so there will be a resistance band for each and every workout.
Medium Resistance Band, £12.00, Gymshark
8. Don’t skip the warm up and cool down
Hands up if you don’t normally warm up your muscles – or cool them down – when you sweat at home? We thought that might be the case.
Make sure you fit in five minutes or so of both, Cela warns—you’re much less likely to get injured, and it’s also super important for keeping your muscles and joints healthy. I understand?
9. Do the workouts you love the most
Last but certainly not least, your sweat session will almost certainly be more effective if you choose one you really enjoy doing.
“Always remember, whether you’re working out at home or at the gym, if it makes you feel safe, consistent, and it’s your preference — it’s a good workout,” explains Cela. “You can get really effective workouts from the comfort of your home—I combine both styles in my workout and love them both,” she shares.