It’s easy to get back into old habits once the summer weather is over and it starts getting chilly again. When it comes to health and fitness, we all strive to get that “beach bod.” At the very least, we want to be in better shape for the summer when bathing suit season arrives. Who doesn’t want to show off toned arms and legs in tank tops and shorts?
Body confidence is fluid and there’s no perfect body type. But being in good shape never goes out of style. That doesn’t always mean having a lean body, but also eating healthier, feeling better, toning muscles, and yes, for some, losing a few pounds.
Summer screams outdoor activities like hiking, bike riding, and sports. But once Fall arrives, keeping fit requires a bit of extra motivation. It’s tough, after all, to rationalize exercising with the visions of bulky sweaters and Long Johns in our near future. Going for a morning run or a family hike doesn’t sound so appealing in colder weather. And chances are, you won’t be engaging in as many outdoors sports and activities through the Fall and Winter as you did in the summer.
There are ways you can set yourself up for success now to keep the momentum going and stay in shape even after the summer is over.
Set up a home gym
I was never game for working out at home, believing my house was too small and I didn’t have the necessary space to set up a home gym. I was wrong. After encouragement from friends who were doing the same, I converting part of our basement theatre room into a “workout space,” creating my own exercise oasis.
It doesn’t have to be elaborate. All I needed was a yoga mat, dumbbell rack to neatly stack dumbbells, and wall hooks for items like resistance bands, loops, and a cordless jump rope. I later added a small and foldable weight bench. I can store it out of the way when my exercise doesn’t require it or when we want to use the room for another purpose.
Combined with a big screen TV that’s also used for movie nights and gaming (I AirPlay the workouts to the TV from my phone), it’s the perfect set-up to turn a basement room that wasn’t being used often into a dual-purpose one that I use daily.
All you really need is a bit of space and screen, whether it be a TV or even a smartphone or laptop, to get going. Think it won’t work? I have not only toned muscles but also lost 16 lbs. over the last year and-a-half, all from exclusively working out in my little space at home.
Check out our home gym buying guide for plenty of ideas on what you can add to your home to make even a small space your own spot for keeping fit.
Get an exercise bike or treadmill
As noted, I opted for a foldable weight bench because the type of exercises I do require it. If you’re not into exercise programs and simply want to get some extra cardio in using an exercise bike or treadmill, you can opt for one of these two. See our comprehensive exercise bike buying guide to help find the right one to suit your needs and space.
On those frigid, winter days when bundling up for a morning run is the last thing on your mind, you can put in half an hour on the bike or treadmill instead, from the comfort and warmth of your home. There are foldable models in these categories as well to accommodate those with minimal space.
An exercise bike or treadmill can be set up in the corner of a basement, bedroom, even the garage. Having it around will help motivate you to get active each day when weather doesn’t permit. It’s also useful for parents who can only fit in a quick workout when the baby is napping. Busy individuals who don’t have time to exercise until late at night can also make use.
Interactive video games for keeping fit
There are ways to combine your love of tech and video games with exercise as well. Yes, video games can help with keeping fit, too! Instead of choosing a passive game that requires you to park on the couch with a headset and move only your fingers, consider adding some interactive games into the mix as well. Use popular consoles like the Nintendo Switch, Xbox One, and PlayStation 5 to play games like Just Dance, Nintendo Switch Sports, BoxVR, and Zumba Fitness: World Party. All of these will get you sweating since they require physical movement.
Add a VR headset to the mix and you can play other games like Beat Saber that require you to move around instead of being sedentary. It’s a small way to incorporate more movement into your days while also having fun.
Get useful small appliances to encourage healthier eating
Keeping fit isn’t just about exercising, it’s also about eating right. It’s tempting to indulge in heavy, comforting meals during the colder months. While there’s nothing wrong with that, you can offset the extra calories by eating healthier for certain meals. Or by finding healthier ways to cook otherwise unhealthy food. This often involves some of the hottest small kitchen appliances.
An air fryer is an obvious option and one of the most popular small appliances. With one, you can still indulge in food you like, like French fries, chicken wings, and fried fish. Except now, you’re using little to no oil to reduce the amount of fat and grease.
You can cook so many items in an air fryer. This allows for healthier alternatives to dishes you might otherwise order via fast food restaurants or cook in loads of oil. Plus, it saves time since they work much faster than an oven.
Have a look through our air fryer buying guide to see if there’s one that makes sense for you.
A blender is also a great option for making not only nutritious, vitamin-packed morning smoothies and protein shakes, but also homemade dips and sauces. You can control the amount of sugar and salt you put into them. Use quality ingredients, and avoid unhealthy additives you would otherwise find in store bought items. From hummus to guacamole, tomato sauce to spinach or bean dip, the possibilities are endless.
A juicer is a great way to ensure you’re getting your daily servings of fruits and vegetables. You’ll also get important vitamins, iron, and fibre to keep you energized and regular. On those days when you’re tempted to snack, or want to grab for the soda, make a healthy juice instead. It will satiate your hunger and reduce your sugar or caloric intake.
See our blenders and juicers buying guide to explore the option in each category, including models that can do both!
Improved sleep is part of keeping fit
One of the oft-disregarded elements of keeping fit is ensuring that you get enough sleep. Various sleep tech products can help. A fitness tracker or smartwatch can help you keep track of not only how much sleep you get each night but also the quality of sleep. With a tracker or smartwatch from a brand like Fitbit, one of the best when it comes to sleep tracking, you can see how much time and when you spent in light, deep, and REM sleep. You’ll also receive a sleep score. Over time, your sleeping patterns are compared to a cute animal. (Note that this particular feature requires a subscription to Fitbit Premium).
Find out more about the various brands and how they track sleep and other health data in our fitness and activity tracker buying guide and smartwatches buying guide.
You can also consider sleep aids, like a sound or white noise machine. These can help calm you at night and help you fall asleep faster with fewer interruptions. There are also items like sleep earbuds, such as the Bose SleepBuds II I reviewed last year. These play soothing sounds to help lull you to sleep. A good night’s rest can help you feel energized to tackle more during the day, and can also help reduce things like stress, anxiety, and even weight gain or bloating.
Don’t be discouraged by bad weather
Maybe it’s seven days straight of pouring rain, frigid temperature, or snow up to your ankles. Or maybe it’s that gloomy feeling that summer is coming to an end. Whatever the case, don’t let our lovely Canadian winters or the changing of the seasons get in the way of your fitness goals and your desire for keeping fit.
There are many things you can do to help keep fit from the comfort of your home. Lots of great items can help, from small or large gear to create a home gym, a simple mat and set of weights, small appliances, sleep aids, and more.
Find a wide selection of health and fitness gear to motivate you to keep exercising at home, small appliances that will help encourage you to eat healthier, and sleep tech for helping get a better night’s rest so you’re ready to go for the morning at Best Buy online.