Keep Fit & Focused During Isolation Part 1

by Alyssa Azar - Adventure Ambassador

Keep Fit & Focused During Isolation Part 1

COVID-19 lockdown isolation presents some challenges when it comes to keeping fit but there are certain go-to exercises I use when limited for space and equipment. You can make the overall session harder or easier depending on your level of fitness by increasing or decreasing the duration of your workout, the amount of reps and sets you choose to do of each exercise, and the equipment you have access to. You can also add weight to certain exercises with a kettlebell or dumbbell if you are able. So here are some of my top tips and exercises for keeping fit during isolation.


1. Reverse Lunge

The reverse lunge is one of the best leg-strengthening exercises you can do. Alternating legs, you want to take a step back with one leg, lunge down until your knee gently touches the floor and the opposite knee is at a 90-degree angle. You do not want to over or under extend, and try to stay upright through your upper body.

Try To Maintain Your Posture Through The Reverse Lunge
Step Back & Into The Movement

Try to maintain posture through the reverse lunge as you step back and into the movement.

2. Bodyweight Squat

These are great for general leg strength especially for outdoor trekking and climbing. Strengthening your legs will pay off when it is time to hit the hills again. A bodyweight squat targets your glutes and hamstrings, and builds strength perfect for walking uphill on steep terrain. To make this exercise more challenging, depending on the gear available to you, you can add some sort of weight like a dumbbell or kettlebell. To add some cardio into your routine, you can always do a squat jump. Make sure with a squat jump you land softly and keep correct form with the squat. Lower down and drive up.

Feet Approximately Shoulder Width Apart
Maintain Upper Body Posture

Feet approximately shoulder width apart, then 'sit' into the squat trying to maintain upper body posture.

3. Burpee

A great way to get your heart rate up and add a burst of cardio into your workout. This is one of my go-to exercises when in isolation and I want to incorporate cardio with strength exercises. Throw some burpees into any circuit and your heart rate will jump up quick. These provide an effective workout in a short period of time with minimal space or equipment required.


4. Sit Up

Having a strong core is vital when moving over different terrain and especially when hiking with a pack on. Core stability will enable you to move more effectively when on an adventure. A simple and effective core exercise you can do anywhere is sit ups. The thing to remember with sit ups is you should be using your core muscles to lift you up. You want to be careful not to just be curling your spine or neck. Spine and neck should stay neutral and only your core muscles should be lifting you up. You don't want to be using momentum to bounce up - this should be a controlled movement. To make this exercise more challenging, either go into a 'tuck up' or a 'V-up'.


5. Push Up

A classic bodyweight strength exercise, which will not only build strength in your arms but is another great way to strengthen your core. Start with knee push ups if you have not built up much upper body strength. Make sure even with knee push ups to have correct form. Your torso and body should be locked into a straight line. You want your body to be in a solid plank position before going into the push up. Think about squeezing your core and glutes tight throughout this movement to keep correct form. To make this a more advanced exercise, you can do alternating single leg push-ups. Raise one leg slightly off the ground before lowering down and completing a push up, then change legs.

Keep Your Torso In A Straight Line
Drive Your Body Weight Up Through Your Arms & Shoulders

Keep your torso in a straight line as you drive your body weight up through your arms and shoulders.

6. Glute Raise

Another go-to exercise of mine when in isolation. Many people tend to have stronger quads (as we use these more when we walk and move) but it's important not to neglect your glutes as these are vital to stabilise and strengthen your body and will both prevent you from injury but also give you the strength needed for adventure and hiking uphill. If you want to make these harder, go to single leg glute raises. Ensure with this exercise again that you are not overextending - you want to keep your core and glutes tight and in a straight line at the top of the movement. Be careful not to arch your back at all.


7. Side Plank

This exercise can be done anywhere and targets your core and in particular - your oblique muscles. This exercise will stabilise your core. Starting with one elbow on the ground lift into a side-plank position and hold. Make sure your body is in a straight line with your core and glutes squeezed tight. Change sides and hold for the same amount of time on the other side.


8. Leg Raise

Another great core exercise which can be done anywhere. Laying flat on your back with your legs straight up in the air, slowly lower down until your feet gently touch the ground and then lift back up to start position.


9. Step Up

If you can train at a park or even have a stable bench at home, step ups are another great exercise to add into your workout. Incredibly relevant to help keep your adventure fitness up. As with all exercises, make sure your core is tight, and you are stable and controlled in this movement. Form is as important as speed, especially with strength movements. Plant your foot on a stable platform, drive up to full lock out with both feet on the platform, and slowly step back down. Repeat movement.

Try To Stay 90 Degrees To Your Platform
Maintain Hip Alignment As You Drive Up

Keep your torso in a straight line as you drive your body weight up through your arms and shoulders.

10. Running

Adding a short run between exercises is a great way to get your heart rate up and build your fitness, depending on your location and conditions. If you have access to any trails to run on it is also a great way to get your adventure and fitness fix from home. If you are working out from home and can use your street or block as a measurement, add in a run before your other exercises at home.


Photo Credits

All images supplied by Alyssa Azar & Adventure Professionals

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