Summer is so close I can almost taste it! This is the time of year that I get excited for longer days and warmer weather. I love spending time outside and just having more sunshine in general, so I’m definitely counting down the days until Memorial Day (because we all know that that’s the unofficial start of summer). With better weather around the corner, it won’t be long until it’s time to break out the shorts, t-shirts, tank tops and bathing suits. If you’ve been thinking about starting an at-home workout routine to get ready for the upcoming season, then keep reading!
In today’s blog post, I’m going to cover three of my favorite at-home workouts: Bikini Body Guide (some people call it BBG) by Kayla Itsines, Jillian Michaels workout DVDs and P90X. I have personally used all of these programs/methods in the past and I’ve seen success with them. If you want to see results when you do at-home workouts, you need to be diligent and stick with them. Giving up or taking days off will set you back, so it’s important to come up with a goal, create a workout schedule that’s easy to follow along with and stick with it so it becomes a part of your daily routine.
Before my wedding, I did a mix of BBG and Jillian Michaels DVDs. I started off with BBG and made it all the way to week 12 before switching over to Jillian Michaels. I know there is a BBG 2.0 program that stretches the program out to a 24 week time span vs. the regular 12 weeks in BBG 1.0, but I knew that I needed to switch up my workouts and try something new because I was starting to get bored and I wanted my workouts to be more mindless in the sense that I wanted to watch someone on my TV screen to understand which moves I needed to do and how long I needed to go each move for.
I started working out and holding myself to a specific workout schedule in February and by the time my wedding rolled around in late July, I had lost around 10 pounds. I was gaining muscle and in turn, I became really toned which was definitely an added benefit since I had more definition in my arms, abs and legs. On days that I didn’t do an at-home workout, I did cardio at the gym (I worked out over my lunch break at the gym). For the most part I used the stair stepper machine for anywhere between 20-30 minutes . This helped to tone my legs and glutes and get my heart pumping at the same time.
In total, I worked out around 5-6 days per week. Rest days were really important to me as those were my days to relax and recharge. As far as diet goes, I didn’t limit myself too much in terms of what I could/couldn’t eat. I just made healthier choices. I cut out sugary drinks, ate grapefruit or yogurt for breakfast and packed salads with low-calorie dressing for lunch. I typically ate whatever I wanted for dinner and skipped dessert.
No matter which at-home workout you decide to do, you’ll need a few necessities:
A set of hand weights
An exercise mat
A water bottle
Hair ties and headbands
Without further ado, let’s get into the at-home workouts that I recommend:
Bikini Body Guide by Kayla Itsines:
BBG is an all-around great workout. Instead of following along with a DVD, you have an actual, physical booklet that you read. The workouts are split out by week and target different areas of the body such as arms, abs and legs. Each day focuses on one key area and then a few days later you’ll focus on that key area again in order to keep building up strength and endurance.
Jillian Michaels Workout DVDs:
The nice thing about Jillian Michaels DVDs are that there are so many of them to choose from. I’ve tried just about every workout, but my favorites are 30 Day Shred and Ripped in 30. Since I work full-time, I need quick workouts that combine strength and cardio and these DVDs do just that.
Depending on which DVD you use, you can expect to have a 20 minute workout from start to finish. Jillian Michaels is a big fan of HIIT workouts, so her DVDs follow a circuit-like pattern. You start off by doing strength moves, then you work your way into cardio and then abs. Each 20 minute session has three circuits.
One thing that I love about these DVDs is that Jillian shows you modifications for just about every exercise. When you’re first starting out, this is really helpful since the moves can be pretty intense right off the bat.
P90X is an oldie, but a goodie. These workouts were all the rage a few years ago. I remember following along with the workout DVDs in high school. Each workout is around 45 minutes to an hour long and they mix cardio and weight training together. Some of the moves are really challenging (wall sits, anyone?), but the pay off is what makes these workouts worth the pain. If you stick with these workouts, you’re bound to see results. My favorite DVD to follow along with is Ab Ripper X. The exercises definitely make your abs burn, but in a good way.
No matter how you decide to work out, fitting at least 20-30 minutes of activity into your day will make a huge difference. When you think about it, working out doesn’t have to take up too much time. You can plan your day around a 20-30 minute workout and once you start making workouts a priority, they’ll fit into your routine seamlessly.
What are your favorite ways to work out at home? Have you ever tried any of the workouts that I mentioned above? I’d love to hear your thoughts, so leave a comment and let me know.