6 Steps to Working Out at Home: Part 2 – For beginners
Welcome to 6 Steps to Working Out at Home: Part 2, this workout guide is for complete beginners. Read Part 1 here. Link opens in new tab. Go ahead, read it and come back to this article.
How is this guide different to others all over the internet? [skip if already read in part-1]
Answer: Yes, You can find n-number of “how to” guides on the internet but none is designed for Conservative Indian Women. No, the term is not demeaning. I am one myself in certain ways. It is difficult for some to get a gym membership, some to jog around the park and the majority of us don’t even have a park. So I thought why not write about what worked for me. Also, I wanted to connect with like-minded Women.
This is my way of empowering women.
In part 1, we have seen who can use this guide, a person’s daily calorie intake according to their level of exercising, workout benefits and types of exercise to choose from.
The steps for today,
- Workout timing and
- Food choices
- Yoga mat
- Supporting garment
are the major ‘equipment’ you will need to proceed with any workout from the list in part-1.
To summarise they are,
→ Cardio barre
→ Body weight
If you are going to follow my “Sedentary to Active” guide , you will find yourself doing one or two moves from all the things listed above. For understanding purpose, I will talk about all the forms of above exercise in a separate post too.
Let’s get started.
Since I am writing this article with ‘at-home‘ in mind. I am going to discuss about the most important equipment we need to do any exercise.
It’s your body.
No need to wait for the next big sale in online retail to buy dumbbells. You have got your body for that. It’s amazing how well it can be used to gain muscle and strength. I am sure if you were interested in workouts then you must have at least tried to do a push-up once in your life.
Myth Alert: There is this myth about women and working out. “Don’t workout, You’ll get muscles.”
Myth busted: That is not true. Long story, short. Small amounts of Testosterone and Estrogen(hormones) are present in both the genders but Testosterone is dominant in men and estrogen in women.
Testosterone is a growth hormone and that’s why Men can grow muscle in a very short period of time, because they have higher amounts of it in them.
Since Women have very smaller amount of testosterone, they cannot develop bulky muscles easily. If it was that easy then everybody would have lost weight and female bodybuilders wouldn’t have to work extremely hard.
Let’s get to working!
One time or another you are going to sit or lie down for an ab(abdominal or tummy) workout. You’d think any surface is enough. No!
Imagine you are doing a child Pose, it is neither comfortable nor hygienic to lie on the dirty floor. Mats/Pai/carpet are going to leave marks on arms and legs, also the comfortableness is out of question there.
Yoga mat saves space, provides comfort and cushioning. Plus they are easy to clean and store.
Buy a good Yoga mat, I cannot stress this enough. They are a big investment and is here to stay for a long time! Yoga mats made of rubber is anti-slippery and it won’t leave marks on your body.
Next step is buying t-shirts, you can splurge on it but I would recommended utmost three t-shirts.
No need to invest in a designer gear or branded workout clothes to exercise at home. Buy track pants and t-shirts during sales because you are going to cut them anyway.
Yes, that’s what we are going to do. You are exercising for the sake of improving your health, what’s the point if you suffer in tight and poorly fit clothes?
Thinner t-shirts are your best friends. To put your mind at ease, I will draw a diagram of how to customise your t-shirt for workouts. The sole purpose of this is to let air circulate well inside your body. Lack of air and sweat stains leads to serious skin problems.
haha, here is the masterpiece. Cut the portion where it is marked red.
I did not want to intimidate you. Hence, I called sports bra as supporting garment. Honestly, that’s an apt name. Any workout is useless if they bring harm to your physique. From ankle sprain to sweat bumps to breast sag.
Over time and age, your breast will sag(hang down due to lack of support) eventually and not taking preventive measures during simple jumps or even the basic jog-in-place will drastically quicken the process.
A few years back, it was hard to find a good sports bra. Now they are easily available but one needs to be careful because lots of brands come in and they don’t always promise support.
Buy ones that has thick adjustable straps. Non adjustable thick strap will do too but overtime they don’t provide the needed support. Avoid very thin adjustable straps at all cost.
All you have to do is buy track pants because they stand time. Buy two pairs so your brain cannot mutter ‘workout clothes in the laundry‘ excuse.
Note: Any stretchable and medium-thick pants would do if you find that comfortable. Often times, I find thin materiel pants with lots of designs in them to be a total waste. They are neither stretchable nor comfortable to move.
From cardio to walking, one definitely needs a good pair of shoes. Again, you don’t have to go for high end Adidas or Nike.
Although, buy if you want. My motto here is to provide a guide to conservative and/or middle class women to exercise. We are often limited by the choices at hand. So we are making the best out of our budget.
Just look for running, walking or even hiking shoes whose soles are patterned. Patterned soles provide good grip. Make sure the patterns are crazy intense.
You wouldn’t believe how a freshly-cleaned tiled surface can posses so much threat! Dangerously slippery.
You cannot stick naked feet into the newly bought shoes and blast that Cardio playlist, you need socks to go with it! Go ahead and buy some, those black school socks would work too! sshhh… I won’t tell anybody.
Go to next page!
#5 WORKOUT TIMING
This is the most debated topic among fitness fanatics. It is something that varies from person to person.Personally, when I started to workout I chose to do it early in the morning.
Benefits of working out early in the morning
- No disturbance
- No time to find excuses
- Calm mind
- Better time management
But sometime I also workout at midday after an hour or two after breakfast, lazy alert
Although I only drank a whole glass of water for snack as a workout newbie three years ago[It was 6 O’clock in the morning and I was impatient to eat anything], it is always advised to eat or drink something(light snack) before working out. A lot of debate is going on around this.
Warning: You know your body more than me. Complete beginner at exercising? Eat a piece of fruit that is easily digestible.
Have to commute everyday to work?
- Start your routine in the Weekends. You will have,
- Calmer mind
- Can correct mistakes
- Can do second round without having to stress about being late for work.
After finding your feet, you can exercise at alternate days or all week depending on time at your hands.
Have plenty of time before work?
- Start exercising alternate days and ease into whole week.
Ideally, moderate exercise 3-4 times a week is enough to maintain a healthy body.
#6 FOOD CHOICES
I am not here to vouch for crash diets. I am here to represent a healthy, hearty, and minimal home cooked meals. Of course, I indulge in oily foods once a while.
I won’t ask you to quit everything and eat grass. Technically, humans cannot digest grass.
Moderation should be your motto.
It’s okay to eat junk food once a while but don’t stay there and take a vacation. Come back! Remember, you are what you
Practice healthy food habits by,
- Stop staring at junk foods in Social media – the more you look the more tempting it is.
- Start following healthy food pages in Facebook, Pinterest, etc. Follow me, I won’t mind!
- Learn to cook at home – get control of your diet.
- Make your own snacks – because, affordable + healthy,
- Stop eating out regularly – those food may taste delicious but it’s nothing compared to mothers’ cooking. Remember, Health comes first.
- Start reading labels on commercial food – not all whole wheat biscuits are whole wheat.
I hope you have a clear vision now about kick-starting that amazing workout journey.
To summarise, all you have to do is Analyse your current health condition, calculate BMR, choose an exercise type, buy t shirts-pants-and-supporting garments, decide when to workout and make good food choices.
If you have questions, please leave them on the comments section and we shall talk about it.
Missed Part 1 of this guide? Read it here.
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