Active lifestyles and training outside definitely took a hard hit ever since the start of the pandemic. While many athletes and sports enthusiasts tried their best to work around the new normal, things are way different than they were before. Nowadays, you can’t really afford to go out with friends or stick to your usual areas because of health and safety concerns, and while you can get away with following specific guidelines, it just isn’t the same.
However, one of the most beautiful things about the human mind is that it doesn’t settle. When faced with great hardship, it will always find a way to overcome challenges and claim the goals it wants to achieve. Lucky for us, the same also applies to working out and sports training, and there are ways to innovate and work around the restrictions of the new normal to still get the most out of our training sessions. So, today we’ll be exploring some of the best sports training alternatives you can try at home!
It’s Not Impossible To Train Effectively At Home
While not impossible, we want to preface this quick guide with a disclaimer. Don’t expect to get the same feeling as you would way back before the global pandemic happened. Sure, we can still achieve the same progressive overload, resistance, and more, but remember, we are working around the caveats of our homes. So, everyone’s limits are different; just be sure to tailor these suggestions according to your needs and situation.
#1 Virtual Training And Simulations
If you enjoy plugging into the computer and meeting people online, then you should be ecstatic about this first method because virtual training and simulations actually exist and have been building very active communities. It takes away all the risk of needing to go outside and localizing all of your workout and training needs into the comfort of your own home. Plus, you could get all of your buddies to join and use it as an avenue to have fun as well.
- All Indoors: While most runners and cyclists enjoying taking in the views and vistas of the outdoors, virtual training applications and simulations make it possible to do all of that in your living room. From indoor golf simulations to cycling on Zwift with people from across the world, the sky’s the limit when you stay connected.
- Hobby And Events: These virtual training applications and simulations also hold their events with actual prize money. So, if you’re planning to take your running or cycling to the next level, all you need is the equipment necessary to compete, and you still get the same thrill as any real-life event. Plus, any equipment invested goes back into your hobby, so it’s a win-win scenario.
#2 HIIT Specific Workouts
Now, if full integration of technology into your training sessions isn’t much your style, then you could also implement High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) specific workouts to your overall plan. Unlike your regular resistance training and daily morning run, HIIT masterfully utilizes compound exercises that reinforce functional movements used in your desired sport. Plus, it can even train some of your weak points, muscle groups that aren’t tackled enough.
- Power & Explosiveness: While your usual trip to the gym entails isolation exercises and control, we often forget the importance of power & explosiveness, two of the most important aspects behind good athleticism. Many sports rely on quick bursts of energy, going from 0 to 100% in a short amount of time. And, HIIT improves this skill drastically.
- Increased Endurance: HIIT specific workouts also have the by-product of improving your overall endurance. Since you’re pushing your body to the limits and working at a moderate and vigorous-intensity, it’s almost impossible not to break a sweat. You’ll be making puddles and trying to catch your breath at the end of every circuit, all proof of your hard work.
What Can I Do Outside?
Of course, if you really must go outside, you can still do the same things so long as you follow the rules. Remember that we’re still feeling the pandemic fallout, so we must be responsible for our actions and decisions.
- Stick To Less Populated Places: One strict rule to follow is sticking to less populated places. You want to reduce the number of people you come in contact with to lessen the risk of catching anything or potentially harming others. So, book that basketball court in advance and go hiking in spots you don’t often visit.
- Always Follow Safety Guidelines: Secondly, don’t forget to follow safety guidelines like staying six feet apart, wearing a face mask and face shield, and bringing a bottle of hand sanitizer or alcohol. It never hurts to be safe, and you’re better off having everything ready and not needing them, as opposed to needing and not having them.
Get Creative With Your Training
Yes, we can still train just as hard as we did before, but we have to be creative and work around the new normal. So, take these suggestions and tailor them as you see fit. Who knows, you might even find them even more fun!