Lockdown Workouts - where to start?
It's been I don't even know how many days since gyms, studios, boxes, leisure centres, training facilities, etc closed down due to Coronavirus guidance.
Maybe this doesn't impact you because you are quite self-sufficient in your training and you have the time, knowledge and equipment to workout independently.
Maybe you reacted quickly and are all set to continue your training with a service and/or equipment.
Maybe you reacted and are keeping yourself busy, but not sure how its working out for the long run.
Maybe you didn't react, and are now 'out of sorts' because your routine is gone.
Maybe you haven't reacted because you don't know how, or don't have the confidence to train independently.
Maybe you didn't have any training schedule pre-Lockdown but are thinking about it now because there's less distractions from your day-to-day.
Maybe you don't have time for yourself because of personal commitments, or something else.
Are any of these you?
Okay. So. Now what?
Here are a few certified 'LFB reviews' of various training media that you can access, along with a rough explanation of how they work. Some pros and cons are applicable across the platforms, such as music licensing issues, but I have outlined the main points here.
Maybe something will take your funcy.
There will be many other platforms available to explore, but listen, I don't have all day.
Les Mills On Demand
What: Maybe the most obvious one to be at the top of this list. Most of the world-class Les Mills group ex programmes available in your own home. Your gym may have offered you this service in lieu of their Group Ex timetable.
How: Payable subscription, via the LMOD app. Can be streamed to Smart TV from device. Choose from different workouts with dozens of releases and formats available (30 min, 45 min, 55 min...)
Pros: Available anytime, anywhere. Trusted workout formats - press play and go. Large variety of workouts and options. High music/ video quality as not 'live streamed'. Free trial available.
Cons: Payable service after free trial - approx. £9.99 per month (although I believe it is great value for money), no tailored coaching, less 'interactive' than other options below. Some workouts require equipment, but can be modified.
LFB Rating: 4.5/5
What: Two-way live workout experience. Chances are your trainer, gym, group ex instructor (or other type of coach) will be using Zoom right now to stream live workouts.
How: Download app to device (laptop usually best), you can see your trainer and they can see you - if you opt for camera on. They may charge you for classes, or they may be free. In either case you will be provided with a code and password to join the workout.
Pros: As close to a normal 'group exercise' experience as you will probably get. You can see your trainer and you will be part of a 'class' environment. People can see each other and communicate - good motivation to work hard! You can be coached on your performance/ technique to ensure you are working the best you can. In theory you could work out with any trainer anywhere in the world.
Cons: The success is heavily dependent on the host (the trainer), for example; their camera position, their clarity in their mic, their internet speed (as well as yours). Exercise to music/ choreographed workouts are particularly painstaking as they are reliant upon decent internet speeds and the sound set-up on the trainer's behalf. Host should always mute participants during the workout otherwise you'll probably hear household background noise or dreadful feedback from the mic.
LFB Rating: 4/5
Facebook / Instagram Live Workouts
What: A one-way transmission for live-streaming workouts
How: Can be available publicly or to a closed group, your trainer will direct you to the live stream. These might be free or paid, depending on your trainer.
Pros: Join in with a real-time workout by a trainer you know, or someone you follow on social media.
Cons: One-way interaction, no tailored coaching. Music licensing/ copyright limitations - video can be stopped by Facebook if suspected. Not ideal if you don't have a social media account.
LFB Rating: 3/5
What: Can be live* or pre-recorded
How: Go to Youtube.com and search for the type of workout you'd like to do.
Pros: Free resource, available anytime anywhere. No need for an account. Thousands of options available.
Cons: Often too much choice and little insight into the actual quality of the workout/ trainer. One way; so no tailored coaching.
*I am yet to try a YouTube live workout! Let me know if you have!
LFB Rating 3/5
Instagram Blogger Workouts
What: Often free workouts posted by trainers, athletes or influencers
How: Posted on Instagram by accounts that offer this service (most do nowadays) - watch the tutorial (usually there is one) and screenshot the workout from the caption below.
Pros: Free resource, can be saved and done later.
Cons: As before, often too much choice and little insight into the actual quality of the workout/ trainer. One way; so no tailored coaching. Dependant on your own drive to exercise.
LFB Rating 2.5/5
Home Programmes ("30-day [insert generic goal here] plan")
What: Free or paid downloadable content from a trainer or influencer
How: Usually through social media; a trainer will advertise their programmes available at a cost to purchase. This might be emailed to you as a PDF, or they may have an app for you to download and work through some resources there.
Pros: A complete plan that you can work through from start to finish.
Cons: Levels of user support vary - check what you get for your money. Level of commitment required, desired results not always guaranteed!
LFB Rating: 3/5
What: Good ol' fashioned running, the great outdoors
Pros: Free to do, measurable, can be varied through distance/ exertion (for example longer trail runs, shorter in-town runs, hill sprints).
Cons: Depends on your personal preference, I find running (steady state cardio) quite hard to do. Some people may be limited by how much running they can do because joint/ skeletal issues make high impact exercise difficult. Definitely need decent* trainers that won't cause problems. Can you leave your home just now due to childcare, or are you shielding/ isolating?
*Decent for your needs, not 'decent' price tag
LFB Rating 3.5/5
What: Hit the road on two wheels.
How: Get your hands on a bicycle. As above, can be supplemented by tracking apps.
Pros: As above.
Cons: As above, depends on how accessible a bike is to you (£££), and the road network around your home. As before, can you leave your home?
LFB Rating 2.5/5