When you think of wellness at home, you may think of fancy brands that are about home decor, or other items to invest in for a healthy home. We wanted to provide some tips for home wellness for those who are searching for a better practice of their overall wellness… at home.
According to an article in the New York Times, people who work from home are not as healthy as those who are not working from home. That may not be surprising from a physical health standpoint, but mentally, it surprised us.
For us, when covid hit, our self care regimen took the front seat and we made it a priority. It is what we call the silver lining of covid. We made a strong attempt to design each and every day toward taking care of our mental and physical health.
Mental Wellness at Home
When you think of health wellness routines, you may automatically lean toward strict dieting and exercise. Rather, we want to promote wellness from the standpoint of it being a lifestyle. When you learn that wellness is a way of life, and not a fad or something to put into place temporarily, it does benefit your mental and physical health.
We first began to concentrate on mental wellness. Even today, it is paramount because it plays such a big role in your physical wellness. Having a sanctuary, a wellness home, is the first step in cultivating an environment that is pleasing to your inner self.
We put together ten steps to make your home your sanctuary, which may help you to get the ball rolling toward your positive mental health care. It is also important to make sure you do all you can to improve your indoor air quality. Plants are a great addition to that, as well as your overall wellness at home.
Exercise Your Way To Better Mental Health
While the fact that working out is wonderful for your physical health might not be news to you, few people understand just how profoundly it can impact mental health as well. Exercise has been shown to reduce incidences of depression, anxiety and overall improve mood.
It does this in a few ways, one of them being through the natural production of endorphins. Endorphins are hormones that reduce pain and make you feel happy. They explain why you get an immediate mood lift right after exercising.
Exercise also helps reduce stress and improve sleep which can otherwise be huge contributing factors towards poor mental health. A regular exercise routine can help with insomnia as well as improve sleep quality.
These two issues of sleep and stress are somewhat intertwined since insomnia is sometimes caused by consistently high levels of stress or anxiety. Luckily, exercise helps with both. These combined effects make exercise one of the single most powerful tools you can utilize to support good mental health.
Why Wellness at Home
Even though exercise is clearly great for us, it can still be difficult to stick to a consistent routine. Getting your body moving regularly takes some discipline and any additional obstacles only make it more likely to fall off the wagon.
Many of us start the new year with great intentions of going to the gym 5 days a week, and while this might work for some, most people will find lofty goals like this unsustainable. Simply sticking to a realistic regime for the long term will give you far better benefits than a few weeks of high-intensity training. This is where at-home workouts come in.
There’s no workout routine easier than rolling out of bed in the morning, making yourself a cup of coffee, and doing a quick bodyweight session. It skips the hassle of getting ready, driving to the gym, paying for a membership, and working your schedule around a business’s hours of operation.
Working out from home is the most affordable and flexible option you could possibly have which reduces obstacles and makes it far easier for fitness to become a regular part of your life.
Exercises for Overall Wellness at Home
You might picture gym bros “pumping iron” in a dingy fluorescent-lit gym, or perhaps you think of exorbitantly expensive pilates studios that serve wheatgrass green juice and supplements you’ve never heard of. If neither of those settings sounds like the place for you, fear not!
We all hear about the benefits of drinking water. Sometimes it is as easy as creating better healthy habits for yourself. This includes meditation, alone time, exercise, and experiencing the outdoors. There are a plethora of reasons getting outdoors is healthy for you, mentally and physically. Of course, air quality may be an issue for some parts of the world.
Despite what social media may lead you to believe, staying healthy with regular exercise doesn’t have to break the bank, and it doesn’t mean you have to succumb to a whole new identity. We personally have a transient, adventure-driven lifestyle, so we couldn’t imagine being tied down to a routine that limited our ability to live life on our terms.
We have a need for flexibility, but we still value being physically and mentally well, and exercise is a key component of this. For these reasons, we’ve been loving at-home workouts and thought it was high time we share why they might work for you, and how to get started!
Is Working Out At Home Effective?
The most common reason why many people are hesitant to begin at-home workouts is because they don’t think they can get the results they want from them. Thankfully, this is merely a misconception. Whether you have no equipment or a full arsenal of workout gear at home, there are plenty of ways to add challenge and make sure you get great results.
Best of all, there are many different styles of working out from home that can suit a variety of specific fitness goals. Whether you want to be more mobile through yoga, more toned through pilates, increase your endurance with HIIT, or grow stronger with calisthenics, you have options.
Your exercise habits only have to be as complicated as you want them to be. The most important part for general mental and physical health is simply to get moving regularly doing something you enjoy.
Getting Started with Your Wellness at Home
The first step to any new routine is making a plan. Good intentions are wonderful, but they won’t lead to action on their own. A good at-home workout plan should fit with your lifestyle, be aligned with your fitness goals, and be something you enjoy. A final factor to consider is something called progressive overload.
This is the concept of continually increasing the difficulty of your workouts to increase your fitness. It can be done by building up the intensity, duration, or frequency of your activities. This is more straightforward in a gym where you can just lift increasingly heavier weights, but it can be done with at-home workouts as well with a bit of knowledge.
Types of At-Home Workouts
Since we are minimalists and small home dwellers, we know the importance of not having a lot of room. Not all of us dedicate a room as a home gym. We have put together a list of exercises to promote wellness at home, that are great for those who have limited space, as we do.
Pilates is a form of low-impact exercise that can be done with minimal equipment to strengthen, tone, and increase mobility. It’s particularly well known for improving muscular endurance and mind-body connection. You can do this with as little as a mat or blanket to exercise on, or you can slowly add in equipment like dumbbells, resistance bands, or pilates balls to mix things up.
Yoga has quickly become one of the most popular forms of at-home exercise in recent years. It’s wonderful for calming the mind and increasing strength and mobility. The only thing you’ll need for this is a yoga mat in a quiet space.
HIIT stands for high-intensity interval training, and it’s a much more fast-paced form of exercise than the last two. It’s excellent for your cardiovascular endurance and will leave you full of feel-good endorphins after a session. The only thing you’ll need is your body and some space to jump around. Get ready to get your heart rate up!
Barre workouts are a low-impact option that originates from ballet. Similar to pilates, it will create long lean, and flexible muscles with little to no equipment. It can be helpful to have a place to rest your hands for this style of working out, however. A ledge or railing or even a tabletop can work just fine.
Dance cardio may just be the most fun form of exercise on this list! Whether you love Latin-inspired Zumba, jazzercise or simply freestyling to your favorite tunes, dancing is a great way to boost your mood, burn some calories, and improve your cardiovascular health.
Running or Walking
Some people love running, and some people hate it. Either way, it’s hard to deny that it’s one of the easiest ways to get a quality workout in. All you need is a pair of running shoes and some cooperative weather. If running isn’t your favorite activity, walking is also a wonderful way to get moving and get some low-impact cardio in.
Walking at least 10,000 steps per day is a great way to make sure you are getting your body moving in the right direction. Walking is also great for your mental health.
This final category of at-home workouts is all about using your body weight to increase your strength. It includes exercises like pushups, squats, dips, and crunches. There are plenty of variations for each movement which makes it suitable for beginners and advanced practitioners alike. You can also add plenty of equipment like Swiss balls, TRX straps, dip bars, and more to keep things interesting.
Getting the Time In
Something we have talked about before on our podcast is the pomodoro method. It is a productivity practice that I (shannon) use while working at home. I set a timer for 25 minutes, and stay on task during that time frame. I then take a 5 or sometimes 10-minute break to implement an exercise. It is a great way to stay moving during my work day.
If you work from home, you may find that before you know it, you have been sitting for hours. A method like the pomodoro will prevent that from happening.
Wellness at Home Products for Working From Home
While we’re on the topic of working from home and taking the time to implement some health and wellness practices, there are a few things that help to keep us on the right path.
Under the Desk Elliptical – a few months ago, I (shannon, again) began using the Cubii under the desk elliptical for the time frames when I am sitting at my desk. Sometimes I just need to sit, rather than stand at my desk and when I am, I want to keep moving. I want to utilize everything I can to keep my wellness on track. It is a mindless exercise that I have found helps me to burn an extra 500-800 calories in a day and keeps my heart rate up.
Stand-up Desk – Ok, this has been a total game-changer for us. Not only is this desk super affordable, but it also has an automatic stand-up sit-down button setting. You can quickly go from one to the other without having to manually change your setup. Make an adjustment setting for what you need for when you are standing, and one for when you are sitting. Also, adjust as needed for various tasks. I use this for my alternating pomodoro method time. For one session, I am sitting, and for one session I am standing. It helps prevent a sedentary lifestyle that working from home can promote.
Oura Ring – the Oura ring is a great way to measure your activity with your day, but also your sleep. Good sleep hygiene is just as important as your daytime movement and exercise. We love that this counts steps, your readiness for the day score, sleep scores, breathing, and so much more. Again, it is not just about the exercise, but overall wellness- mentally and physically.
Design Your Own Workout
One of the most effective ways to maintain a healthy lifestyle while staying at home is by having a professional create a personalized workout for you, accompanied by your favorite playlist.
That’s where Lucija, on Fiverr comes in. a dedicated PhD student with a Master’s degree in Kinesiology, comes in. With her profound knowledge and passion for movement and wellness, Lucija possesses the expertise to design a workout regimen specifically tailored to your needs. She created a workout perfectly designed for us, with our favorite music.
Making Your Plan for Wellness at Home
Now that you’ve gone through the styles of at-home workouts, and ways to stay well physically and mentally, just take the step to implement something. Perhaps even a few that you’ll enjoy and that align with your fitness goals. If you’re a beginner, it’ll be helpful to follow along with an online workout video or even subscribe to an online platform that offers virtual classes.
You can plan out what workouts you’ll do in advance to make the process seamless and automatic. This could be your system indefinitely, or once you get more comfortable with whatever activity you’re doing you could start making up your own workouts. Remember, wellness is not about weight loss. It is about living your best life and enjoying the longevity that health and wellness brings along for the ride.
However you choose to begin your at-home wellness journey, make sure to go slow, have fun, and do what feels best for you. Happy wellness and keep breathing.
FAQs | Frequently Asked Questions
We keep our phones and any digital notifications on silent during that time. On the breaks, we will check to see what we missed and if we need to handle it. If not, we task it for later.
Use a tracker and on your breaks, make it an intention to walk- around your apartment, your home, outside for 5 minutes, whatever it takes. Spending the breaks taking 250-500 steps will add up to a lot when you are already taking a walk/run each day anyway.
It’s all about boundaries. Set the expectation to those in your life that you are not to be bothered during certain times and if you are, you will not respond. Period.