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By Letshego Zulu


Keep fit and active on a budget

Ideas on how you can ‘train anywhere, train anytime’.

Many of us are still recovering from the financial strain of Covid. I can also imagine the number of gym memberships that were terminated in the process. And that’s okay, you will recover in good time. But with that said, it doesn’t mean exercise should come to a standstill.

I have always been in favour of the attitude of “train anywhere, train anytime” so today I’ll be sharing more ideas on how to keep fit and active on a budget.


Spot running

Have you ever considered putting on a pair of takkies and running on the spot? Well, spot running is fast becoming a movement. So people have even shared weight loss results from spot running. If you don’t know what it is, it simply is running on the spot. You don’t head out the door and run on the road or on a treadmill. You can do it in the safety of your home.

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No need to part with any money whatsoever. When you do try it out, remember to swing your arms in a running motion too. To make it interesting and to keep you motivated, keep changing direction and also put on your favourite music.

Air Skipping

Just as you would skip using a skipping rope, the motion is the same. If you don’t have a skipping rope it doesn’t mean you can’t skip. Jump on the spot with both feet and continue to swing your arms in circular motions. It sounds very easy reading it, but give it a try and set an alarm for two minutes and you will realise it’s certainly easier said than done. If you feel you want to make it a little more challenging, you can fill up two bottles with water and hold one in each hand.

This will add weight and result in a tougher skip. Try it.

Outdoor running and walking

Of course, running and walking are cheaper sports to engage in that don’t need much of a budget. All you need is a pair of takkies and if you don’t have much of a budget, you can make it work with inexpensive takkies.

Picture: iStock

Most of us have shorts and T-shirts in our wardrobes and a cap to shield us from the sun. That’s essentially all you need and you’re good to go.

Calisthenic Function Training

Callisthenics is proving to be the most cost-effective way to keep in shape. Whether you want to lose weight, tone up, improve your strength or gain muscle mass, all of this is achievable with functional training. It can literally be done any- where, anytime. All you need is a square metre of space around you and a full-body workout can be achieved in as little as 15 minutes, or as long as you want it to last.

Callisthenics teaches you to utilise your body as your training weight. No need to carry heavy dumbbells or barbells. For example, if you weigh 70kg and you do an exercise like jumping jacks for a minute, you are literally carrying 70kg for an entire minute.

Picture: iStock

Not many people can carry and utilise a 70kg dumbbell at the gym for an entire minute. As mentioned, you can achieve a full-body workout with a callisthenics training routine. A range of exercises like jumping jacks, knee-high jumps, front kicks, side shuffles, spot running, buttock kicks, air skipping, mountain climbers, burpees and sit throughs can be put together for a full-body workout.

If you want to focus on the upper body, exercises such as push-ups, chair triceps dips, multi-directional punches holding water bottles filled with water are perfect. Lower body exercises can include a variety of squats and lunges. A workout can include 10 callisthenics exercises performed for one minute each. Incorporate one minute rest periods after every five exercises and perform three to five sets.

Zulu is a qualified biokineticist and cofounder of PopUpGym. Follow her on Instagram: @letshego.zulu; Twitter: @letshegom; Facebook: Letshego Zulu

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