It's a new year, meaning a new chance to crush your fitness goals. COVID-19 is still present, so the idea of going to the gym or group workout classes remains uncomfortable for many. With winter in full swing, working out outside is not a favorable option for the majority either. 

So what is the best way to stay in shape? Homes have turned into our offices and classrooms, so why not a gym too? Break up the monotony of your day with fun workouts. They will make your energy high and serotonin levels even higher. All of these suggestions are virtual and compact, the perfect at-home workout combination. 

Dance workout

Don't doubt the power of dance. While some may not see it as a traditional workout, if you have ever attended a school dance, you know it is. You come out sweating and build endurance, tone and coordination. If you hop on YouTube and type in "dance workout," thousands of different results come up. Following a video is especially helpful if you aren't the best dancer. Instructors break it down in a simple format that's easy to mimic. 

You can choose from any music genre, from TikTok dances to One Direction -- or even your favorite musical like Mamma Mia or Hamilton. A personal favorite is MADFIT or POPSUGAR Fitness. MADFIT does one song workouts to today's hits, or about 15 minute themed dance workouts. POPSUGAR Fitness has longer videos at about 30-40 minutes too. They are usually a more general style of dance, which is useful if you're looking for a long activity. 

Abs during commercials 

This workout is perfect for those looking to ease themselves into fitness. It also is suited for those who prefer short bursts rather than one continuous exercise. While watching TV after a day of work/school, do an ab workout during the commercials. Stick to the basics and do crunches, planks or look here for more ab exercise ideas. If you're looking for more structure, go on YouTube and find two-minute ab workouts like this

Deck of cards workout 

Put that deck of cards lying around to use in the form of a workout. Write down each suit - ace, spades, clubs and diamonds. Next, assign one exercise to each suit. The activities are your choice. Check out these three different cycles for ideas. When drawing, complete the number of reps on the card. For face cards, do 11 reps each and 15 for Aces. If you're up for the challenge, work through the whole deck. To make it less intense, cut the deck in half or to your preference. 

Self-defense workout 

Interested in learning useful life skills and working out at the same time? Try a self-defense workout. Build confidence and strength, all while burning calories. Most self-defense workouts on YouTube are kickboxing style. This keeps you on your toes and puts your arms to work. Check out videos like Krav Maga Girl or Lombard MMA. It's easy to follow with knowledgeable instructors.  

Circuit workout 

A circuit workout is made up of typically 8-12 exercises that are repeated about 3-5 times. For example, you would complete eight activities, making up a circuit. Then, take a short break. Next, repeat those eight exercises, thus ending another circuit. This style is popular and beneficial because it is to do at home, and equipment is optional. It is also highly customizable to your fitness level, allowing you to decide what works best for you. Find a combination of following along with a video or written instructions.

Workout for Women app 

Workout for Women is an app that acts as a portable personal trainer. The app caters to your fitness levels and personal goals. The workout videos provided are then curated to fit what suits you best. There is even a reminder feature to motivate you to stay consistent with exercising. 

They have personal coach programs such as "30 Day Weight Loss" and "Ultimate Bikini Body." Exercises range of all kinds from arms to core to a full-body workout. Workout for Women is growing in popularity in the fitness world. It was titled the number 1 Health & Fitness App 2021 by the Apple App Store.

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