Labor Day Weekend marks the unofficial end of summer, and it is somewhat of a last hurrah for people until the upcoming fall and winter holidays. If you were like the majority of Americans this past weekend, you probably did a little celebrating, indulging in a few (or more) libations and noshing on some not-so-healthy foods. Is it safe to assume that you didn’t go for a run or glance at your yoga mat? We thought so, but that’s okay!
After a long weekend of limited to no exercise and veering from your diet, it is crucial to make a triumphant return to exercising by jumping into the deep end headfirst. You can do this literally, provided you swim and need to get back in the water, or take part in several intense high-intensity interval-training (HIIT) circuits. You don’t need to start a heavy deadlifting or benching session because your muscles will be sorer and more fatigued after the gap in your workouts.
HIIT workouts get your blood flowing without putting a lot of strain on your muscles. When returning to your exercise routine, it is wise to treat your body like the precious cargo that it is. That means you have to stretch before your workout, warm up with about five minutes of cardio, and then foam roll once you finish your workout. Along with that TLC routine, the following exercises will help you get back into your regular exercise habits.
Roll Out That Yoga Mat
Let’s say your yoga mat collected some dust over the weekend. So what? Roll that bad boy out in the comfort of your own home, get dressed in your favorite yoga outfit, and pull up a video of a gentle yoga routine. Yoga helps to get the blood flowing, balance breathing, and increase energy levels. A lot of people also praise yoga because it helps to calm the mind, improve sleep, increase concentration, and reduce stress.
Try Some Micro-Movements
Cardio barre workouts and barre-inspired workouts are sweeping the fitness world by storm, and for good reason. These workouts don’t require weights, but the minimal movements work your muscles a lot harder than you realize. Targeting several muscle groups in the body, micro-movements help stabilize your core and require concentration to do correctly. It won’t feel like you are doing anything at first, but you’ll feel it the next day.
Grab Some Kettlebells
While simple at-home bodyweight exercises like lunges or squats can work your muscles, kettlebells add a little extra umph to your workout routine. You don’t need an entire set; rather, a pair of kettlebells can challenge and strengthen your muscles. It’s common to swing kettlebells, especially during squats, and this motion flows with the exercise, working to increase range of motion. There are many kettlebell workout videos online, so find a beginner routine and get after it.
Take A Walk
Walking is the most underrated exercise out there, but people fail to step outside their own doors or onto the treadmill. Just to be clear, we aren’t suggesting that you take a leisurely walk to smell the flowers or to go get ice cream. You can incorporate interval training into your walk by speed walking or jogging for 30 seconds at a time, every two minutes. Don’t stop after you finish jogging; just keep walking until your next interval. Lace up them sneakers and hit the pavement, or treadmill, or elliptical machine.
Squeeze In A Core Circuit
Many people decide to focus their workouts on all areas of the body, except for the core muscles. Core workouts aren’t necessarily fun, but a great core workout can be done anywhere and the exercises are relatively gentle on your muscles after some time away from exercising. Neglecting core workouts means that you are not strengthening your pelvis, lower back, or hips, so accept the challenge and find a few at-home core workouts to start or finish your day strong.