When temperatures plummet, dragging yourself to the gym is the last thing you want to do. Luckily, you can work up a sweat in your own living room. But don’t take it from us—here, five fitness gurus share their favorite ways to burn calories and build muscle right at home, plus their favorite threads to look good while doing it.
What to do: “Strengthen the core. Strengthening the core is not just for chiseled abs. It’s also essential for everyday activities (and helps maintain good posture, thereby preventing achy backs and making you look your tallest!). My favorite core exercise is a floor barre exercise [called] ‘circle plank.’ Start in the plank position with abs tight; pull right knee in and circle it clockwise, then counterclockwise. Keep the rest of your body stationary. Repeat 10 times, then switch legs.” What to wear: “Anything Nike.”
Ms. Patel’s newest Chicago studio, Floor Lab, opens February 15 in River North.
What to do: “My favorite at-home workout consists of the Trifactive dynamic warm-up for 7 minutes and firm black foam roller for five minutes to release the muscles that were found to be tight during the dynamic warm-up, followed by alternating reps of 10 proper squats to strengthen the gluteals and proper push-ups to build core, pectorals, and shoulder strength.” What to wear: “I like to work out in Lululemon's For The People Short 2, because it stays put no matter what position I am in, and they are sweat-wicking, which helps prevent chafing during intense workouts.”
Bergen Wheeler, National Director of Core Fusion Talent and Development at Exhale: Go High Intensity
What to do: “The latest craze these days is high-intensity interval training, so anything inside of that is a really successful workout. So five or six moves that you can do a minute each, and you do a round of three cycles, is the way to go, especially if you don't have a lot of time or space. Really simple exercises that you could do: mountain climbers or double knee tucks for a minute, and then hold a plank and do pushups for a minute. If you have a shelf or an elevated chair, you can do tricep dips for a minute. Next, you could do arms overhead, or just air squats for a minute. So feet parallel, arms up in the air, and just literally sit with your hips back to 90 degrees in line with your knees and then right back up.” What to wear: “I like Nike and Candida, and very loud, printed leggings—camouflage and wild, crazy colors.”
Jillian Lorenz and Ariana Chernin, Co-founders of The Barre Code: Strengthen Your Abs
What to do: “Butterfly crunch: Place your hands behind your head, feet together, knees wide (in butterfly). Inhale deeply and on your exhale, flatten your back to the mat. Crunch up, keeping elbows wide and chin off your chest using your inner thighs to pull legs together; exhale as you contract. Lower your back to the mat and open legs to a butterfly position. Repeat 30 times. Next, side oblique knee pulls: Roll onto one side, place forearm under shoulder, stacking legs long, one on top of the other. Bring your other hand behind your head, keeping your elbow wide. Drive top knee into elbow while pressing up from forearm on mat, crunching into your side oblique. Lengthen long and stack legs. Repeat on each side 20 times. What to wear: ARIANA: “Quest Metro Slouch Pant from Athleta. These are honestly the perfect pant to take you from the studio to the street. They're also super comfortable and stylish. It really doesn't get any better than that! JILLIAN: “Barre Up Bralette. I own a version of this bralette from a previous collection and it's probably one of my favorite sports bras to wear when taking our Barre Code classes. The perfect amount of support and style.”
What to do: “Interval training workouts provide the highest calorie burn per minute. Tabata-style workouts using total body moves for 20 seconds, alternating with 10 seconds rest for 8 repetitions. A few moves that we love to do at our gym include a corner lunge with single arm press, mountain climber planks, and burpees.” What to Wear: “Don’t try too hard. Don’t be too matchy-matchy. I like to have fun with layers and create outfits that incorporate at least three colors. Try a tank top with an off-the-shoulder t-shirt or sweatshirt.”