Kevin Byrnes 03/20/2020

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Spark Fitness members participating in a group training session

By now you probably already know that most sports are postponed or canceled and that society is essentially at an overall standstill thanks to the coronavirus outbreak. Although this shutdown is probably the best thing for the sake of everyone’s health, it’s still pretty unfortunate and it’s creating some MAJOR disruptions in our daily lives. With gyms, group classes, spin studios, and other various fitness outlets shut down at the moment, many of us are left looking for ways to stay in shape during the pandemic.


Can’t go to the gym? Here are some alternative workout options to stay in shape during quarantine


  1. Wear workout clothes at home. When you’re not getting ready to go out anywhere, put on clothes that are suitable for exercising. They’ll keep exercise at the forefront of your mind and may encourage you to work a little harder.
    • Wearing workout clothes also means if you have 5 or 10 minutes to do a short workout, you’re ready to go.


  1. Take short fitness breaks when sitting. Whether you’re working on your computer or watching television, get up and move around for 5 to 10 minutes for every hour you sit. Pace around the room, or do 10-20 jumping jacks.

    • If you’re watching TV, get up and do quick exercises such as jumping jacks, push ups, or crunches during commercials.
    • If you invest in a stability ball (available online or at sporting goods stores), sitting on that instead of on your couch while watching TV is a good way to passively strengthen your core. During commercials you could do stability ball exercises.


  1. Crank up the pace on chores. Sweeping, vacuuming, dusting, even making the bed all burn calories. Play some energetic music and increase your intensity to really get your heart rate up. Not only will you get in a little exercise, you’ll also maintain a clean home.
    • For example, you can burn between 200 and 300 calories cleaning your bathroom. Plus, scrubbing the tub is a great way to tone your arms and shoulders.
    • Just 30 minutes of making the bed will burn 130 calories – about what you’d burn if you ran on a treadmill for 15 minutes.


  1. Pace when you’re on the phone. If you spend time on the phone, you can use that time to get in a little exercise. Invest in a hands-free headset if you don’t already have one, and pace around the room as you talk.
    • Many smartphones have built-in activity apps that will also monitor your step count. Use these to see how many steps you’re getting in each day. Try to add a few hundred steps each week to gradually become more active. Set a goal for how many steps you want to achieve, then challenge yourself to meet or beat that goal.


  1. Incorporate strength training when putting away groceries. Instead of putting a milk carton straight into the fridge, use it as a weight and do a few bicep curls, or lift it over your head a few times. Switch and do the same thing with the other arm to prevent muscle imbalances.
    • Canned goods are also good for doing straight-arm lifts with a little resistance. Hold a can in each hand, then extend your arms out to your sides even with your shoulders. Lower your arms down to your sides on an exhale, then raise back up as you inhale. Do 10 repetitions. You can also extend your arms in front of you and do forward lifts.
close up of kettle bells

7 Reasons Why We Swing

1 – One of the Best Fat Loss Exercise

If your main objective is fat loss, then there are not many single exercises better than the kettlebell swing. The swing exercise targets multiple muscles in one movement creating huge demands on energy consumption which in turn means maximal calories burnt.

2 – Cardiovascular System

Swings are similar to sprinting. It takes a massive amount of oxygen to fuel the kettlebell swing, so it only takes between 20-60 seconds before your heart and lungs are really pushed to their maximum capacity.

3 – Increasing Strength Quickly

Big strength gains come from eccentric movements “Negative Movement” which involve lengthening muscles under load. The kettlebell swing loads well over a100 muscles eccentrically as you actively absorb the force from every swing movement. Now remember, the eccentric movements are what make your muscles feel sore the next day!

4 – Stabilizing the Shoulders and Knees

The weight of the kettlebell while performing the swing tries to pull the shoulder joints apart during the movement and as you fight to keep your joints in place and working on your posture, your “stabilizing muscles” become rapidly stronger. If you suffer with bad knees then often the swing can be tolerated due to the lack of excessive bend at the knee meaning you can still strengthen the legs, hips, and cardio without needing to squat or lunge.

5 – Learn Explosive Athletic Power

Sports are all about power. The faster you can release stored energy the more powerful you can move. The kettlebell swing develops lots of explosive power through the hips and legs which is vital for most sports. (Jumping, Sprinting, Agility, and Endurance)

6 – The World is Your Gym

Unlike lots of other exercises you hardly need any room to perform the kettlebell swing. Since your feet does not move and the kettlebell will only extend slightly further than your hands so you could workout anywhere with a 6-foot square space.

7 – Only One Kettlebell Required

The kettlebell swing is a very diverse exercise. You can start with the two-handed swing and as you out grow that movement instantly increase the intensity by using one hand.