Words and Images by Paola Faith Simon
Images by Bryle Eusebio
Taking care of your health should be your priority in this time of pandemic. Staying in shape by being physically active improves your protection against health conditions and diseases. Exercise is also one way to cope in these trying times as it boosts mental health and mood. It has been proven that working out can ease anxiety and release tension that might be building up in our mind and body.
Due to being stuck at home, it is very easy for us to just lie around all day and maybe just binge-watch our favorite series. You might think staying in shape is impossible due to a lack of space and equipment. All gyms are also closed due to the state-wide lockdown. So how can we exercise considering our current situation? Well, get up and get moving because here’s a workout guide and a list of common items we use as gym equipment — found just inside your home!
8. Soft drink Bottle + Shoulder Press
If you have two empty 1.5L soft drink bottles lying around, fill them up with water! Fill them fully or depending on your desired weight — just make sure the two bottles are of equal weight. You can also use water bottles or even wine bottles as an alternative. Grip them properly so they won’t slip out of your hands!
How to do Bottles Shoulder Press: Hold the bottles by your shoulders, elbows out to the sides forming a 90° angle. Extend your elbows upwards and press the bottles above your head. Then slowly return to the starting position. Remember to move only your arms and do not lean your back.
7. Rice + Biceps Curl
Have you received your relief goods yet? Before cooking your rice, you can use it to train your biceps so you can grow your guns! Separate the rice into two plastic bags. You can start with just 1 kg each and gradually increase per day. Do this regularly and by the end of the quarantine, you can flex your post-quarantine macho arms to your friends.
How to do Rice Biceps Curl: Start by holding the plastic bags with your arms hanging on the side, palms facing forward. Keep your upper arms stationary as you curl the weights up to shoulder level. Contract your biceps for maximum effect.
6. Water Gallon + Triceps Extension
Triceps training is as important as working on your biceps. You can use an empty water gallon and fill it up according to your desired weight.
How to do Water Gallon Triceps Extension: Hold the gallon with both hands behind your head, elbows pointing forward. Lift the gallon upwards until your elbows are fully extended. Remember to keep your elbows still and squeeze your triceps. Then slowly lower the gallon behind your head to your starting position.
5. Liquid Detergent Jug + Bent-Over Rows
Check out your laundry area and grab a liquid detergent jug. You can use this to mimic bent-over dumbbell rows. This is a great exercise to target your back, shoulder, and arm muscles. You can also use other objects as long as they have handles for easy grip.
How to do Detergent Jug Bent-Over Rows: Starting in a lunge position, place your free hand on your thighs. From the bottom, lift the jug by pulling your elbow slightly back towards the hips and upwards, so that the forearm is perpendicular to the floor. Repeat. Keep your back straight throughout the exercise.
4. Basketball + Russian Twist
Can’t play basketball outside due to home quarantine? Put that ball to good use as an alternative for a medicine ball and work on your core! Get those six-pack abs you’ve been wanting to achieve. You can also use a volleyball or soccer ball if you have one.
How to do Basketball Russian Twist: In a seating position with knees bent, hold the ball with both hands. Twist the ball to your left and right while keeping the body centered. Lower your back or lift your heels off the floor for added difficulty.
3. Books + Sit-ups
If you’re feeling unmotivated with your academic readings, use them for some core muscle burn instead. Books are a great way to exercise your brain… and your muscles! Start with one book and gradually add one or two more if you’re feeling extra strong.
How to do Books Sit-ups: Lie on your back with your knees bent, and hold your book/s against your chest. Raise your upper body until your forearms touch your thighs. Contract your core. Slowly lower back your body to your starting position.
2. Backpack + Lunges
Time to tone those glutes, hips, quads, and thighs into better shape with these weighted backpack lunges. Dust off your backpacks because you can finally use them again. Then stuff it with heavy objects such as books, cans, or water bottles.
How to do Backpack Lunges: Start by standing tall with feet hip-width apart. Take a huge step backward (or forward) with your right leg and lower your body until the left thigh is parallel to the floor. Go back up to starting position and repeat on the other leg.
1. Pet Dog / Cat + Squat
Man’s best friend can also be man’s best workout equipment. Bond with your cute furbaby while you workout! You can do some squats or add in a press for an added difficulty.
How to do Pet Squats: Stand tall and hold your furbaby closely to your chest. Lower your hips down until your hips are parallel with your knees. Look straight, maintain a straight back, and engage your core. It’s good form if your knees do not exceed the tips of your toes. Then slowly get back up while you exhale.
Here is a beginner-friendly Full-body Workout Routine you can do using common household items! Do this for 2-4 sets, with 1-minute rest between each set.
- Jumping Jacks (20)
- High Knees (30)
- Bottle Shoulder Press (10)
- Rice Bicep Curls (10)
- Water Gallon Triceps Extension (10)
- Detergent Jug Rows (15 on each side)
- Backpack Lunges (15 on each side)
- Dog Squats (15)
- Books Sit-ups (15)
- Basketball Russian Twists (15 on each side)
Remember to drink lots of water and cool down afterward! To increase difficulty, you can gradually increase the number of reps per exercise or increase the weight of your equipment.
Have you started working out yet? What items do you use? Try this for a week and let us know how you feel!