Home exercise during the COVID-19 Outbreak
With the quarantine period being extended due to the vicious COVID-19 virus outbreak, a lot of exercise enthusiasts are stuck at home, without the right gym equipment for building muscle.
The gyms are closed and nobody knows how long it’s going to take before they re-open, and this is something that worries a lot of workout fanatics who cannot spend the day without bettering their physical capabilities.
Fortunately, there are still many options when it comes to exercising, and we shouldn’t let the quarantine be an excuse for remaining sedentary and inactive.
Although not many of you are fans of calisthenics, or as some like to call it “bodyweight fitness”, it’s the only option we’re left with, unless you have your gym at home, which is a different case.
Many are skeptics and quick to deny the fact that you cannot achieve anything by moving the weight of your own body, but today we’re here to prove them otherwise.
Although for a very advanced lifter, it might be highly unlikely to build muscle by doing pushups, pull-ups, and bodyweight squats, it’s still a lot better than remaining sedentary and losing the progress that you’ve worked so hard for in the past couple of years.
What are my exercise options?
You shouldn’t focus on what you cannot do, so focus on what’s possible, and how you can tweak it to be as similar as what you were doing back in the gym when things were normal.
The most common exercise that you can do is called the push-up, and if you consider yourself to be someone who trains seriously, there isn’t a chance on Earth that you don’t know how to perform this movement.
Pull-ups are the second most sought-after exercise that you can do on any bar that’s stable and durable enough to handle your weight, and it’s a great movement that’s going to help develop your lats. They might be difficult to do for beginners, but with enough effort, you’ll manage to hit one proper pull-up, and then you’ll find it easier to do more.
Improvise, adapt and overcome
For those of you who are just starting, pushups are a great way of developing the chest muscle, and one part of the triceps. If you’ve never exercised before, starting slowly is the way to go. Master the form before you start pushing out those numbers. Quality reps are the way to go.
For the more advanced lifters, you shouldn’t find excuses that after benching 300lbs pushups are “nothing”, because there are so many ways you can make them heavier and more difficult to do. You can add a weighted vest, a backpack filled with heavy house-hold items, or just try all the different variations of the exercise, such as the diamond form, the archer pushups and everything else that comes on your mind.
If you manage to do enough of them, you might even notice some sweet gains. Remember to leave a day of rest in-between each training session, simply to avoid overworking your chest and triceps.
For pull-ups, if you are a beginner and cannot do one, try doing the “Australian Pull-ups”, a modified version of the traditional movement that’s going to build some of the required back muscle to perform the proper, vertical variation.
To the rest of intermediate and advanced lifters, the same things that we said above for the pushups will work for this movement as well. Try to wear a weighted vest, or if you don’t have one, a backpack that’s filled with something heavier. A couple of bottles filled with water will be more than enough to make this a challenge for you.
Don’t forget the legs
We know that it’s not the favorite part of your body to work on, but we cannot let the lack of equipment get into our way of maintaining our leg muscle. We all want to get back at the squat rack and hit those numbers once again, so why remain sedentary and lose all of our precious gains?
Doing bodyweight squats might be very easy at first, but if you pump up those repetitions, you’ll feel the burn. However, that’s not all that you should be doing.
Just as there are many variations of the pushup movement, the same thing applies to squats. If you were wondering how calisthenics athletes are working legs, well, now it’s the time to find out for yourself.
Piston squats are a great way to make these twice as difficult as they already are, and if you end up adding some weight on your back while doing them, we guarantee that you’ll face a challenge. It might sound silly at first, but try to maximize the sets and reps you’re doing, and get ready for the soreness in the morning.