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7 home workouts you don’t need a gym membership for

Stay home, get fit — it’s a win-win

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Finding the right gym is tough. Many things factor in: distance, traffic, exercise crowd, costs, exercise specialties, available equipment — my concerns could go on. But, these shouldn’t stop you from exercising! (Girl, they’re not valid reasons to slack off and you know it!)

What if I told you that it’s possible to get a good workout, even in the comfort of your own home? Yep, it’s possible.

Whether it be a lazy day, or just because you’re not into working out in public, here are some moves to get you going. All for a healthier you!

Home HIIT

What you’ll need: An interval timer app and the resolve to push yourself to the limit during high intervals

Simply put, High-Intensity Interval Training is a method of working out that calls for intervals of rest and high energy which allow for effective exercise. Don’t believe me? Here’s a quick explanation:

That being said, you can actually design your own work out based on your preferences, so long as you exert enough effort during the high interval period.

Personally, I go for full fifteen minutes of home HIIT sessions with one-minute high-intensity activities and 50-second rest intervals. I usually do a combination of high knees, jumping jacks, and jump squats to get my heart going. Every now and then, I just change it around to keep myself from getting bored. Of course, you can’t expect me to time while I’m exerting so much physical effort, so I always have the Interval Timer app (Android, iOS) and my workout playlist going every time I do this.

Resistance band training

What you’ll need: Resistance bands and the whole world as your playground (or yeah, your house).

Think giant rubber bands you stretch and pull around to get your heart going. You use the bands as resistance for each movement which eliminates the need for weights or big gym machinery. It may sound simple enough but it’s real exercise, I swear!

Of all the workouts I’ve tried, I found resistance bands to be the most convenient. Not only are they cheap and easy to use, you can also bring them anywhere without a fuss (ideal for people who travel a lot, too). You can buy a variety of types and colors online. I got mine off Amazon for around US$ 10 — a legitimately small price to pay for fitness!

If you have no idea how these bands work, I gotchu:

More good news is that most resistant band brands also offer guides and videos. For example, Fit Simply has a curated list of moves you can do here. Another brand, Belus Active (which are bands that come in pink!), has a roster of personal trainers with exercise demos here and their Instagram account is updated with more mini-workouts you can do with their bands.

Speaking of Instagram…

Self-curated Instagram exercise routine

What you’ll need: A lot of random Instagram browsing time and will power to actually do the exercises

So let me tell you something you probably already know: There are a lot of fitness people on IG. That’s actually a great thing! There are so many mini-workout posts and all you need to do is try them.

When mindlessly browsing through Instagram (yes, I know you do this, too), keep an eye out for these mini-workout posts. When you see one you’d like to try, save it in a special “Workout” Instagram folder and just go back to it later on.

Just one of my workout folders

It helps to follow certain Fitness IG people. My personal favorites are @shona_vertue, @carlyrowena, @stef_fit, and @kayla_itsines. Following hashtags like #homeexercises or #homeworkout also give you more options.

Home Zumba

What you’ll need: Loud speakers on your phone or computer and a lot of dancing attitude

For those who have moves, Zumba is the way to go. This fitness routine burns a lot of calories without you even noticing. A combination of aerobics and Latin dance, this is definitely a fun way to get your blood pumping without even realizing you’re putting in effort to exercise.

Zumba itself has a number of routines online that you can learn. Time to get dancing!

Exercise app workout

What you’ll need: Chosen exercise app and the patience to find the workout sessions you want to try

These days, there are a number of great apps that can guide you through different workouts. From variation HIIT exercises and body weight exercises to weight training, there’s an app for that! My favorite one remains to be Nike+ Training Club. It not only gives a number of different exercise sets for varying fitness levels, it also walks you through each routine. Workouts are classified by specific fitness goals to make it easier for you to find your routine of preference.

Other notable free apps to check out are Workout for Women, Swortkit, and Johnson & Johnson 7 Minute Workout.

Wearables’ built-in workouts 

What you’ll need: A snazzy fitness wearable that has this function

These days, even sports watches have full exercise programs built in, and all you need to do is wear the thing, start the program, and do what it tells you.

Exercise coaching on the Fitbit Ionic

Even if you’re clueless, these wearables will show you how to do each movement on their tiny screens; some would even vibrate to signal the end of an exercise. It’s literally a training coach on your wrist! Watches like the Samsung Gear Sport, Fitbit Ionic, and Fitbit Versa are equipped with this function.

Home Yoga

What you’ll need: A yoga mat, yoga pants, and YouTube

Aside from being meditative, Yoga is a great workout for those who prefer something more calming and less high energy. Not only does it improve muscle strength, flexibility (which is great for people with scoliosis, like me), and balance, it’s even proven to decrease stress.

There are tons of videos online that walk you through a session; all you really need is to follow along. Here’s one for newbies like me:

If you want more control over your Yoga practice, you can download any of these free apps, depending on what suits your needs: Simply Yoga, Yoga Studio, Fitstar Yoga, or Daily Yoga.

Accessories

Samsung’s new LED light cover is the phone case we’ve always wanted

It lights up with different designs!

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The newest Samsung flagships have just been announced and they’re all great, but there was one thing that really caught my eye — mostly because it was literally glowing.

Yes, that is the Samsung Galaxy S10 in my hands, and yes, those are actual LED lights on the case. Just so you can appreciate how pretty it is, here’s the LED case in action:

So what exactly is going on here?

Samsung’s LED light case looks and acts like a normal smartphone cover. It comes in blue and white and has a smooth exterior. It’s also pretty thin, considering, and it has a sturdy feel.

Once it’s attached, the LED cover app will appear and you’ll have different LED designs to choose from. You can go for the “Mood lighting” option which was shown above, or…

You can choose LED icons. Just some of my favorites include this beating heart… 💓💕💖💘💞

… and this adorable doggo. 🐶

There are honestly so many to choose from, I’m not even kidding.

It even does a smartphone camera timer countdown…

 

… and just like that I am sold!

Cheers, Samsung! Just when I thought I was over boring smartphone cases, you shove a shiny, sparkling one in my face and I am very, very convinced.

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Cheap Unlimited Airline Wi-Fi: #TravelHacks (Episode 1)

Plus our favorite travel gadget!

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In the very first episode of #TravelHacks, we fly to Singapore on Singapore Airlines’ new 787-10 regional business class. I show you how to pick the right kind of luggage, give you tips on how to live out of a suitcase, get unlimited Wi-Fi on flights, taste the world’s cheapest Michelin Star meal, and of course, talk about my perfect travel gadget.

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PhoneSoap Go: A portable device that will sanitize your smartphone

It isn’t called PhoneSoap for nothing!

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That smartphone in your purse can do so much but it also has 18 times more bacteria than the average public toilet. Before we continue, let that sink in.

Before you drop that phone you’re probably reading this article on, know that there’s a way to clean your handset and it doesn’t involve soap and water. Introducing: PhoneSoap.

PhoneSoap Go is the brand’s latest release. It’s a tiny chest that will literally clean your smartphone. It uses UV-C light to kill bacteria on your device. All you do is put your smartphone inside, tap the lightning button, wait 10 minutes for one cleaning cycle, and your phone should be germ-free.

The inside compartment can house your phone, no matter what size. It’s pretty spacious so it can even fit small everyday stuff like keys or wallets. Despite all that space, the PhoneSoap Go is designed for portability. This is PhoneSoap’s smallest device — something you can bring along on trips to make sure your handset is sanitized anywhere you go.

On the back of the chest is a USB-A and a USB-C port. This is because the PhoneSoap Go has a 7000mAh battery built into it. That’s enough for 45 cleaning cycles, or four phone charging cycles.

Yes, I said phone charging cycles. That’s because you can actually use it as a power bank. There’s even a slot for your charging cable so you can charge as you sanitize your phone. That means even if the whole cleaning cycle is just 10 minutes, you can leave your phone plugged in longer. There’s even “acoustic outlets” at the bottom so you can hear phone notifications.

Of course, unless I have a petri dish and some phone swabs, I won’t be able to say definitively that this thing can clean 99.99 percent of bacteria on your phone, as the brand claims. But, I will say that if it does end up sanitizing your phone in any capacity, that’s already a good enough deal considering how dirty these things supposedly are, and how much we’re holding on to them on a daily basis.

But really, more than phone cleaning, what you get is peace of mind. Honestly, my own (many, rotating) devices have been chilling a lot in my PhoneSoap ever since I got it.

The PhoneSoap Go retails for US$ 79.95 and you can get it from their website.

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