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Last Wednesday I left on spring break with my kids, a few days at the beach with friends. Emails and updates about the Coronvirus Pandemic started coming in, and I felt angry. I was shocked at what I thought was a big overreaction. Now, 5 days later it feels like everything has changed, including my mind about all of this. I have read what I can read to be informed, and truly believe that social distancing and staying inside is the right thing to do. With that in mind, even though my local pool and gym are still open, I have decided not to go. Instead, I’ll be using my home equipment to get as best a workout I can get, paired with some walks or even light runs with my kids. Note: I am a terrible runner and fully expect my 7 and 10 year old to be dragging me along.
I have been using a workout app (Sweat, maybe you are familiar) for about a year and a half and because of that have collected a lot of “home gym” equipment. It’s just more time efficient to do the workouts at home than run up to the gym. I already (usually) swim an hour or more each day, so adding that gym time would make my day really difficult. Doing strength exercises at home lets me flex my schedule.
So what do I use? Here are my top 10 dryland gear go-to’s:
- Medicine ball. If you are a beginning with any equipment, start out with something light like 5 or 8 pounds. If you don’t have a medicine ball but have kettle bells, you can do most exercises with either.
- Free weight set. I just have 5lb weights, but I’d really like a whole set. Again, start small – maybe a 5lb, 8lb, and 10lb set.
- Physio balls. Great for abs! You can really get creative with these. They are great for core work and balance, and can double as a home office chair!
- Bosu Ball. This is another great core/balance tool, but it will run you around $100. Beware – your kids will want to jump on it.
- Stretch cords. These are a staple for swimmers, and you can do all kinds of exercises that help with stroke recovery and building strength.
- Yoga/Exercise mat. Don’t tear up your back and joints doing exercises on hard floor or carpets! You don’t have to get something fancy. I have completely worn mine out (it flakes off onto the floor when I use it), but it’s still going strong and ran me about $20.
- A workout bench. This is on the more expensive side, but it’s great for dips (tricepts), ab exercises, and legs (step ups or jumps).
- Stepper. In all honesty, I do not have one of these, because I have a perfectly good fireplace to use instead! If you’re in a 2 story house, you can also just use the stairs. But if you really have nothing to step up on, these are pretty inexpensive and good for a lot of leg/calf work. I use my “stepper” about once a week in workouts.
- Jump Rope. Not just for kids! This is a great mix of cardio and leg work – and it can be incorporated into a HIIT workout if that’s your thing.
- Weighted bar (in place of barbell). I really love this idea because if you also have a workout bench, you can do a lot of “gym only” exercises at home. These are on the more expensive side depending on the weight. I started out with a 20lb bar, but this is after about a year and a half on a consistent strength training program. To start, 10 or 15 lbs would be fine.
In addition to the links above, I’ve also added some dryland training gear to my SwimOutlet.com store. Head on over there to check it out!
Now I don’t want to just drop equipment here without exercise ideas, so over the next few weeks I’ll be posting videos on my Instagram page featuring each of these pieces of equipment! Follow on IG to get some inspiration. For all my fish out of water out there, keep your head up! Comment below on your favorite workout gear or dryland exercise!