"Your living room was enough, your garage was enough. The little sliver of space between your bed and the wall was enough. You didn’t need more - more equipment, more people, more space to move your body in an effective, healthful way."
2020 taught us many lessons in every area of life, including fitness. We learned that we are not reliant upon studios, gyms, fancy equipment or expensive memberships to exclusive health clubs. We learned how incredibly resourceful we truly are and actually discovered the joy of working out from home.
While we might have missed the in-person presence of a favorite instructor or the connection that comes from community, we realized how much time, money and energy we can save by staying home in addition to deepening the connections that matter most. In many ways, less was more.
We re-discovered the simple pleasure of neighborhood walks. We reconnected with our partners, children and friends as we slowly traversed the streets to pass the time. We met neighbors who we’d lived next to for years but never truly known.
We experienced valuable time alone and maybe discovered the joy of audio books or a new favorite podcast. And, we saw how walking, although not vigorous or sweat inducing, is one of the most effective workouts in the world.
While it may not have been ideal to log onto another Zoom session to meet your fitness needs, it eventually became a place of reconnection with yourself, your body and your potential. You began to realize how simple it is to switch on an app or pop open your smart TV and move your body.
Despite its recent notoriety, at least for exercise, technology became a time saver, money saver and energy saver giving you a much needed break from the monotony of homeschooling children, working from home or sitting for longer hours than ever. Your living room was enough. Your garage was enough. The little sliver of space between your bed and the wall was enough. You didn’t need more - more equipment, more people, more space to move your body in an effective, healthful way.
When you stepped onto your yoga mat, you closed your eyes, you listened to your breath, you tuned out your surroundings, you tuned into yourself and you realized, you were never truly alone. One meaning of yoga is “to be alone together” so as you flowed you connected to hundreds of thousands of people around the world, and across time, going through the same movements. All from the comfort of your home.
You might have gone from hours at the gym, trudging along on stair climbers, ellipticals and treadmills to realizing how an online HIIT workout or YouTube hiphop class could actually maximize cardio in a shorter period of time.
Because you were home alone, you maybe even tried new things, took greater risks and were willing to embarrass yourself for the heck of it. It might have led to deeper connections with yourself, your kids or roommates and probably led to a good laugh, which is always great for the core!
For less time you got a bigger return in more ways than one. And what did you do with those extra hours in the day? I bet, a lot of the time, whether you were aware of it or not, you were connecting with people you share your home or community with.
When “the new normal” emerges, what do you want to maintain with your at-home fitness routine? It might be tempting to jump back into everything you missed but, before you take that leap pause and consider what benefits you acquired from staying at home and which of those benefits you’d like to carry forward into this new year.