Keeping fit and healthy during winter is extra hard because no-one wants to get up an hour earlier in the dark and swap their PJ-pants for gym leggings. Plus there’s all the comforting warm foods that need to be eaten like soup and soup with a roll and soup with two rolls because OMG how good does bread dipped in soup taste?!
But we know that just because we’re not planning on wearing a bikini any time soon, doesn’t mean we should stop exercising during the colder months. It’s good for, like, health and stuff, but most importantly it’s a way to warm up your freezing body. Ayanda Thabethe often posts her workouts on Instagram which makes us feel a lot of things: mainly a combo of scared and motivated.
We’ve got questions, like how TF do you do so many burpees in a row without having to call an ambulance? And will we ever be motivated enough to workout like this? And aren’t they dying of heat in the sun? And what are those big rope things they’re twirling around ‘cos those look fun?
We’ve been inspired by Ayanda’s glutes to up our workout game (which is easy to do when your workout game is sitting on zero). Here are some of the best workouts you can do at home to warm yourself up this winter while getting strong AF:
Cassey Ho is the founder of YouTube channel Blogilates where you can find hundreds of pilates videos, and they’re all free. It’s like pilates, except instead of doing it to old Buddha Bar CDs like you’re used to at your gym, these are done to fun pop music. Also, Cassey talks throughout her videos to distract and entertain you, which makes the agonising time spent doing leg raises go by much quicker. Beginners download her 28-day workout calendar which tells you exactly which of her videos to do every day for four weeks. Afterwards you’re pretty much guaranteed to want to keep going; Cassey has an infectious way of making you feel excited about exercise.
RushTush, aka Rushda Moosajee, is one of the most talked about personal trainers on South African Twitter. She’s known for posting unbelievable before-and-after photos of her clients, her Instastories of her killer workouts, and smoking hot photos of herself in a thong bikini (a casual 3 months after giving birth). If you’re in Cape Town you can sign up to train with Rushda twice a week, which sounds chilled but it’s not (don’t expect to be able to walk the next day). But for those who can’t get to her studio, she’s launched a DIY Winter Challenge. Sign up and you’ll be sent a four-week meal plan, exercise plan, and weekly training via WhatsApp. People who have done her challenges before swear by them. They’re gruelling but are guaranteed to transform you and make you feel hyped to train and get stronger.
If you want to workout but also kinda want to get into a cult, then Kayla’s army is recruiting. The Australian personal trainer is the brains behind the BBG (aka Bikini Body Guide) workout programme, which has a community of about 20 million women. Download her app and you’ll be guided through 28-minute exercise routines which are split into four reps of 7 minutes. You’ll do moves like burpees, squats, sit ups and gradually be introduced to more intense moves (like did you know a burpee with a push up while holding a 6kg weight in each hand is a thing?!). It’s not free but the results are worth it. Be warned: devotees enjoy it so much that they change their Instagram handles to things like BBG_mama or dancingwithdumbbells.
The Fitness Marshall
If the thought of picking up a weight or doing a push up is a massive exercise turn-off for you, you’re not alone, and luckily not all forms of exercise involve going to the gym and hating your life. Dancing is a great form of cardio and leaves you with an amazing endorphin rush, plus you learn some new moves to add to your repertoire. The Fitness Marshall makes dance videos set to all your favourite pop guilty pleasures that are easy to pick up and really make you sweat. Once a week he makes a Sweat Set YouTube playlist where you can press play, follow his moves and get that heart rate up for a good half an hour.
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