I can pinpoint when it happened. It was right as I was putting (shoveling) a third helping of stuffing onto my plate at Thanksgiving. Yep, that’s when my food & health choices tumbled into their yearly, downward spiral AKA the holidays. I’m acknowledging my not-so-great choices, but that doesn’t mean I regret them. The holidays are a time to celebrate and I’m sorry, celery and yogurt dip don’t cut it when there’s cheese plates and cocktails to be had. I was Gung ho about getting back into the gym after the New Year, but some nights it just wasn't happening; I'm a fantastic excuse-maker. I knew 5-nights a week at the gym wasn't sustainable for me, so, I made a compromise and added in some online workouts. Here's my take on two very different but effective @home workouts.
This workout is a mix of ballet, pilates, yoga and strength-training inspired movements. Barre3 is all about balance in exercise and life.
What you need:
Yoga mat, light weights 3-5lbs. (optional), a waist-high, sturdy surface like a chair, counter top or the back of a sofa, Barre3 Core Ball (If you go to a Barre3 studio you can usually buy a used core ball for a couple of bucks -- or you can buy online for $15).
Why I like it:
My biggest and best excuse for not exercising always comes down to this -- I already showered. I know, it’s ridiculous, but I’ll skip a workout if it means getting so sweaty that I need to hop back in the shower mid-day. I barely have enough time to do my hair and makeup once, twice? Not happening. Barre3 is a hardcore workout that doesn’t leave you with bright red cheeks and a not-so-desirable “glow”.
Barre3 is all about repeating teeny-tiny movements. Trust me, it looks like you’re not doing much of anything, but you WILL feel the burn. My favorite thing about Barre3 is there’s options for 10, 30, 40 and 60-minute workouts. Sometimes you only have 10 minutes before rushing out the door in the morning and that’s okay because, with Barre3, that’s long enough to get you “shaking and quaking” -- get one workout in and you’ll figure out what I mean by that. One thing that sometimes keeps people from taking Barre3 classes in a studio is the price, but you can get access to all the online workouts for just $10/month.
Still not sure? Here’s a link to a free 10-minute workout video so you can see if Barre3 might be your jam: http://barre3.com/online-workouts/total-body-10
BB-what? Bikini Body Guide. Admittedly, the name for this @home workout is enough to keep lots of people from doing it. It sounds like a workout routine that includes grapefruit and cottage cheese as the only acceptable “meals” and I’m not into that. The transformations founder, Kayla Itsines, posts on her Instagram though were too amazing to ignore.
I signed up for the program and managed to finish the first round of BBG which is 12 weeks -- that’s 11 weeks longer than I’ve stuck to any other workout routine...ever.
What you need:
Either the Sweat With Kayla App or BBG guides.
Why I like it:
The 28-minute workouts are HARD. You do two rounds each of two, seven-minute workouts that include four different exercises in each. Ignore all the numbers. All you need to know is the workout plans are easy to follow and they’ll leave you embarrassingly sweaty and out of breath. Seriously, this is completely the opposite of Barre3. I even ended up cursing at myself under my breath a few times when I wanted to give up. For those reasons and a few others, like -- I don’t enjoy doing jump squats in a packed gym -- this is the perfect @home workout, at least when you first get started.
If you’re the type of person who benefits from the “buddy system”, then BBG will probably be a good fit for you. BBG has a cult-following, just check out the #bbgcommunity or #BBG on Instagram. The transformation photos are completely addicting and the women who post seem to be genuinely interested in building community. That means, if you need a little extra push to get that workout in, you can scroll through Instagram and get the hit of inspiration you need.
If you just want to try BBG out, you can download 7 days of free workouts here: http://www.kaylaitsines.com/pages/free-workouts