Tuesday 21 Oct 2014

Information and opinions presented here do not always represent the views of the American Heart Association.

Heart-healthy DIY workout solutions

Published: 3:00 pm CDT, September 21, 2012

Finally, autumn is here! While we say goodbye to bikini season, fall is a great time to reinvigorate your workout schedule. Personally, I love going for a jog or hitting the gym this time of year. But gym memberships, new jogging shoes and updating your workout playlist can really break the bank. I’m a recent college grad, so “frugality” is my middle name, but that doesn’t mean I’m ready to give up on my workouts or my heart health.

Which brings me to the theme behind today’s post. You don’t have to drain your bank account to keep your waistline and your heart health in check. There are plenty of DIY solutions that will give your workout a boost and give your wallet a break.

 

Smart phone arm band- My phone is my best workout buddy. My music and fitness apps help me power through a workout but figuring out where to store my little workout guru isn’t always a simple task. Websites like Amazon are littered with armbands for smart phones but they can be pricey and uncomfortable.

DIY solution.-  Tube sock

Cut off the foot section of the sock so that you’re left with just the tube. Turn the sock inside out and insert your arm so that the top of the sock is at the middle of your upper arm. Finally, fold up the bottom of the tube, so that it’s right side out again, until it meets the top, forming a pocket. Insert phone and voila, a comfy smart phone armband! You can also sew the back of the sock so that your “pocket” stays in place.

Hand weights- The ultimate walking accessory. Hand weights are a great way to tone your arms and increase your activity level during a walk, but purchasing multiple sets can be costly.

DIY solution- Canned goods

Why not use something you already have lying around the house? Soup and vegetable cans make a great DIY substitution. For less weight use smaller cans, for more weight go for the ones labeled family size!

Kettle ball- any fitness guru will tell you these are a must. But the cost of a full set can be pretty steep.

DIY solution. – Milk or juice jug

Fill a clean plastic gallon or 2 liter jug (must have handle) with water or sand to get your kettle ball fix without the extra price. Going green never looked so heart healthy!

Sand bag- Start slow with this one. It’s not for everyone, but once you get the hang of it, the sand bag can be very useful for increasing strength and endurance. Remember, it’s important not to lift too much!

DIY solution- Dog food

If you have a pet, check out their food or litter bags. They’re huge! Easy to turn into a sand bag for a heart pumping workout. Tip: you might think about putting it in an old gym bag for extra protection, otherwise you might be stuck cleaning up cat litter if the bag busts.

Wrist/ankle weights- Great for a little added resistance. You can use them while doing house hold chores to keep your activity level up and your heart healthy.

Diy solution- pair of socks

Fill clean socks with pebbles or dry beans. Sew or glue the open end closed. Attach some Velcro strips to the ends and you’re done!

 

So there you are; simple workout substitutions that can keep your wallet and your heart happy. Do you have any DIY workout tips or ideas? Share them with us! We’d love to hear them!