Work, kids, the house, the spouse, the boss, the folks, no sleep—we get it! You want to exercise, and even though you feel like you’ve got no time, we gotcha covered.

Time for Class?

Who doesn’t love an amazing, 90-minute aerial yoga class? Pilates with pizza would be perfect, too. But where does that fit in the schedule? If it can, that’s outstanding. Congratulations. But the likely reality is, the best stretch you’re getting in the morning is reaching to shut off the snooze for the fourth time or grabbing the door jam to keep your balance on the way to the baby’s room for the fifth time.

Home Gyms

If you’re fortunate enough to have a treadmill at home, best odds is that it’s either unplugged or acts as a hanger for flat-dry laundry. Too bad the Stairmaster is in the garage where it’s 109 degrees on a cool day. We joke, but that’s because sometimes you have to if you don’t want to scream—or cry.
Here’s the gold at the end of the rainbow. Your home really can be your gym. You don’t need “special” equipment. Your classes can be as long or short as fitting to your needs. It’s free. You just need imagination, courage, and a passion for an endorphin rush, a visible muscle under your skin, and/or a lower number on the bathroom scale.

The Secrets are Revealed

Here’s an exercise plan that won’t cost you anything but your commitment. Please don’t mock the suggestions if you feel they’re old school. No one’s laughing at classics like Mustangs, strobe lights, or Bob Dylan, right? Some things maintain their value… Here’s the obligatory checklist to start:

  • The key is to keep your heart rate up.
  • If you can integrate aerobic and anaerobic, you’ll be the master.
  • If you can combine aerobic, anaerobic, and strength training, we bow to you.

Your Options

This is the “secret.” We’re going to list all the (high impact) great aerobic exercises you can do at home, no problem, and hopefully with sweat. Mix and match and create your own circuit.
All you need is a) good training shoes; b) space so you don’t trip or fall; and c) add other stuff (like weights, balancing, or stretching) during the exercises or later when you get a chance. Also, on any positions that include a plank, you may opt to use that moment to do a pushup if you feel up to it.
1) Burpees. You’re going to have a love/hate relationship with these! Squat to the floor. Jump your feet to a plank position. Jump back in and stand up. That’s it. You burn 100 calories in 10 minutes. (So in 5 minutes, you’ll burn 50 calories!)
2) Mountain climbers. These are obnoxious too, but they work! Begin in a straight-arm plank position and then run (not jump, run) your knees in and out, in and out. This is a great calorie burner and core and shoulder strengthener.
3) Bear crawl. Think “traveling plank.” Begin in a squatting position, walk your hands out to a plank, then walk them back in and stand straight up. Repeat. You can growl during this exercise.
4) Squat jumps. Begin from a squat, as the name implies. Keep shoulder-width space between legs and your feet pointing forward. Now jump (as high as you can) and land (as gently as you can) back into a squatting position. These burn calories, raise your heart rate, and build leg strength.
5) Jumping Jacks. These need no explanation—just like buckling a seat belt. Just raise your arms high with each jump to increase heart rate and make them worthwhile. Some moms can’t do these for certain reasons. Don’t worry, just jog in place instead and raise your arms.
Showing up is everything. Give any exercise your best effort and whatever time you can. And while you’re doing it, let the rest of your world’s worries fall away. Enjoy!
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