When it comes to surviving lockdown, moving your body in whatever way you’re able to can be a game-changer for your mood. However, whilst we all know that exercise is brilliant for releasing endorphins (the feel good hormone), it can be tough to find the motivation to do a home workout. Unless you’re a follower of personal trainer, Courtney Black.
People are as obsessed with her no BS personality as they are with the routines she creates and tens of thousands tune in to her online workouts. The same big numbers have also downloaded her app – Courtney Black Fitness app – and her new book, The Pocket PT (published 31 December 2020), has received rave reviews. But given that the gyms are set to remain closed a while longer yet, what does Courtney recommend fitness fans stock up on when it comes to home workout equipment? Luckily, her favourites are super simple: resistance bands and dumbbells.
“I stick to dumbbells, they’re easily stored and anyone can get them online,” she tells Cosmopolitan. “And if you haven’t got dumbbells, you can use washing detergent, you can use water bottles… obviously you’re going to need something a little bit heavier than water over time, but as a temporary solution they’re great.”
As for resistance bands, Courtney is a big fan of how versatile they are. “I’ve got two different lengths, one shorter and one that’s a bit longer that I used for all my HIIT workouts that are legs focussed,” she says. “A resistance band just makes your usual HIIT workout so much more of a challenge – it’s all about adding volume.”
She explains that if you were in a normal gym, to make your workout harder you’d likely lift a heavier weight. “Adding a resistance band is pretty much the same thing, you’re make it more difficult without adding any more weight on. You can also use them for burn outs (where you target one specific set of muscles with high reps and similar moves), activations and warm ups.”
Courtney also shares that it’s important to remember that everyone was a beginner once upon a time, so if you don’t immediately feel like you’re able to master a move, the only thing to do is keep practicing. “You need to take everything at your own pace, I always say if you’ve planned a 30 minute workout and you need to take ten breaks, then take ten breaks, but you have to finish that workout.”
But it’s important to be honest with yourself too, she adds: “Only take a breather if you need to take a breather though – be honest with yourself, are you just being lazy or do you genuinely need to take a pause?”
So there you have it: stock up on resistance bands, dumbbells (or water bottles) and push through the pain as best you can.
For more motivation, check out Courtney’s book:
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