Last Updated on June 3, 2022 by Michael Brockbank
Not everyone has the time or money to hit the gym every day to lose weight. In fact, I didn’t start regularly going to the gym until 2021. Luckily, you don’t need the gym to lose weight if you increase physical activity while you’re home.
This is speaking from experience as I managed to lose 80 pounds and keep it off primarily without going to the gym. Currently, I’m just going to the gym to sculpt a few areas of my body.
Well, and to lose the last 30 pounds. Still, I don’t necessarily need the gym to do that as long as I can keep physically active.
How to Lose Weight from Home By Increasing Physical Activity
It’s not all that difficult to burn fat, as long as you’re active and keep an eye on what you eat. Even the best diet plans all tell you to get more active.
That’s because there are more benefits to physical activity than just dropping the pounds. It’s a way to prolong your life.
Think of it like this; can you name three people in their 90s who are obese? I know I can’t…because they’ve long passed. Frankly, I want to be here as long as humanly possible.
What are some ways of increasing Physical Activity from the home?
1. House Work to Burn Calories
I know that house cleaning and maintenance isn’t the sexiest thing on this list. Yet, it’s probably one of the most underestimated for health and fitness.
You can burn more calories by vigorously cleaning the house than you can with a brisk walk around the neighborhood. Not only that, but you’ll have a nice, clean home to boot!
When I say, “vigorously,” I mean taking the chore on with gusto. Try to get moving as fast as you safely can while cleaning. Personally, I aim for 20 minutes per day of fast-paced, non-stop cleaning.
2. Yard Work for Fat Burn and Vitamin D!
Just like house cleaning, working on your yard helps you burn fat while improving your landscape. Well, as long as you have one. Some of you might live in apartments, so, there’s really not much you can do.
That is unless you grab a garbage sack and help clean up the trash in the neighborhood.
Being outside can also help your body synthesize vitamin D. This vitamin has a long list of benefits which include improving bone growth, fighting infections, and reducing cholesterol through the conversion process.
3. Building a Home Gym to Boost Physical Activity
It’s really not all that expensive to build a home gym, even if you’re on a tight budget. The trick is to buy things you’ll actually use. The last thing you want is to blow money on stuff that’s just going to sit in the corner and collect dust.
For instance, if you have a Five Below in your area, you can pick up a slew of cheap exercise equipment that’ll get you started.
In any case, the world is full of affordable exercise equipment that will contribute to increasing physical activity. You just need to find some things that you’ll really get into over the long term.
That’s why I suggest starting with cheap exercise equipment. Get a feel for something before you buy the high-end version.
4. Training for Your Favorite Outdoor Sport
Perhaps you’re interested in bowling more often. Or, maybe you would like to give golf a try. Whatever it is, you can always find ways to train your body to improve your game from home.
Let’s take golf, for example. Strengthening your arms, shoulders, back, and legs can improve your game. I know from experience that I’ve made significant improvements with swing control and power since I started exercising more.
There are a number of ways you can do this without breaking the bank as well. It all really depends on what game you’re interested in playing.
5. Do More Things for Yourself
One of the things that made a big difference when I started losing weight is making the decision to do stuff myself. I used to call on the kids to get me everything from coffee to bringing me random things from upstairs.
Doing it all myself made me walk up and down the flight of stairs with each cup of coffee, which is quite a bit. Then, I would leave the remote by the television so I would have to get up and walk across the room to change the channel.
We live in a world where there is far too much convenience. When you remove those convenient things from the equation at home, you’ll actually get more physical activity than you would think.
6. Put on the Headset and Do Some Walking
Here is one of my most utilized pastimes; put on the music and go for a 10 to 15-minute walk around the house. Often, I’ll even walk up to the store to do a bit of shopping, as long as I don’t intend to buy anything frozen.
Walking is one of the primary elements that helped me lose all of that fat.
Just keep in mind that your walking speed is going to be the biggest contributor to cardio exercise. You’ll burn far more calories at 3.5 mph than you would at two.
7. Create Physical Activity Challenges from Home
I am a big fan of challenges. And even though I’m not always successful, I’ll still create new ones to inspire me to reach my goals.
For example, I am currently trying to hit one million steps in 80 days. That’s actually quite a bit for a desk jockey who works and plays at his desk for up to 16 hours per day.
My point is that challenges can be inspiring, motivational, and fun, as long as you create one that doesn’t set yourself up for failure. Always challenge yourself to beat your personal bests.
You’re only in competition with yourself.
8. Using the Oculus Quest 2
There is a lot of hype about using the Oculus Quest 2 for fitness. And although the list of active games is increasing, I find it difficult to work up a decent sweat.
This is simply because my glasses keep fogging up. After 15 minutes, I can no longer see to play the game. I am currently working on a permanent fix for this problem.
Still, the short time I get to play winds up burning quite a few calories. Not to mention that it’s fun to play games with the kids, like bowling. And there are a few zombie games I wouldn’t mind trying.
Not to mention the popular, Beat Saber.
9. The Xbox Kinect…Yep, I Said It!
One of my favorite ways to boost physical activity from home is playing the Xbox Kinect. To be honest, I’m quite impressed the unit hasn’t broken down yet.
I still use it quite often as there are several games that work me up into one hell of a sweaty mess. In fact, I’ll often burn more calories within a 30-minute session than most people will by going to the gym for the same amount of time.
This is mostly because of how I play. I throw myself into each game and jump around the living room like a monkey on fire.
10. Gamify Everything
You can probably see a trend among the list of things above. I am all about gamifying everything. This is when you take a seemingly mundane chore and turn it into something fun.
Gamification is often used by corporations to increase employee happiness and productivity. The same effect is present when increasing physical activity in the home.
For me, it’s all about collecting numbers and setting up spreadsheets. I find data fun. I also enjoy the Fitbit games with friends and family, like Bingo.
My point is to find a way to make exercise a game that you’ll be interested in playing for the long term.
It’s All About Getting the Heart Rate Up
The overall gist about getting exercise at home is elevating the heart rate. Losing weight is simply a byproduct of cardio activity. The more you sweat, the stronger your cardiovascular system becomes.
In turn, your body begins using resources to maintain the level of activity, such as burning fat for glucose to power your muscles and movements.
However, the sheer amount of physical activity you get at home will mean nothing if you don’t monitor your food intake.
As I’ve told my son, it doesn’t matter if you ride your bike for five miles or 5,000 miles if you consume more carbs than you’re actually burning. It’s like trying to fit 15 gallons more of gas in your car when you’ve only used up five.
Losing fat and boosting health rely heavily on a balance of intake and output. Not to mention increasing the nutritional value of the foods you eat.
You’re not going to get the same results pounding down 2,000 calories worth of cupcakes every day versus a proper mix of proteins, vitamins, and minerals.
Find a Home-Based Physical Activity You Enjoy
The trick to losing weight from home is to find a physical activity that you will continue to do for the long term. Think about all the people you know who have workout DVDs still in their closet.
This is perhaps one of the biggest reasons why many gyms opt for a contract membership. That way, they’re ensured a certain amount of money even if you never go back after a month.
Finding something you enjoy can help you maintain that activity for more than just a few weeks. Otherwise, you’ll get bored and start doing it less and less. Before you know it, you’ll get ultimately bored of physical activity while sitting at home on your couch eating a bag of Oreos.
A good example of finding something fun is how much I enjoy playing the Xbox Kinect. I love tennis, Virtual Smash, and Avengers: Battle for Earth.
I also enjoy collecting data from my Fitbit for certain activities and figuring out which is better for me to burn calories.
I’m a geek with a spreadsheet.
My point is that everyone will find a physical activity they thoroughly enjoy as long as they take the time to explore the options. Even if you have to go through several to find your groove, it’s better than the alternative.
Take it from someone who had a severe heart issue in 2016. It’s worth the time to get up and move while doing something you like.
What Kind of Physical Activity Do You Get at Home?
In the grand scheme of things, it’s really not all that difficult to lose weight at home as long as you follow two simple rules: boost physical activity and monitor your food intake.
Keeping yourself in a caloric deficit is actually relatively easy if you use an app like MyFitnessPal.
What kinds of things do you enjoy doing at home that gets your heart pumping?