Going to the gym with a friend or using a personal trainer is a great way to improve your fitness and stay in shape. They work as a physical aid in helping you do certain exercises but also a motivational one. However, personal trainers can be expensive and gym buddies occasionally unavailable. That doesn’t mean you should sack off working out though, as there are plenty of exercises you can do in the gym or at home on your own, whatever area you’re working on.
Using dumbbells, cables and machines is an obvious option for the solo gym goer. If you’re used to bench presses and squats with heavier weights that require a partner then it can appear trickier on your own. Attempting heavy bench presses solo is dangerous.
Instead use the power rack. The horizontal safety bars can be used like a spotter to ensure no injuries are caused. Set the safeties at appropriate heights for what you intend to work. For bench presses this would be at chest level and shoulder press at shoulder level. When you can go on no longer leave the barbell resting on the safety.
Many cardio workouts don’t require two people but having a partner provides that extra motivation to push yourself to the max. Going to a spin class is one way of boosting your drive as you’re surrounded by other fitness enthusiasts giving it their all as an instructor barks orders.
If that sounds too stressful then investing in your own indoor spinning bike from somewhere like Fitness Warehouse is another option. This means you can work out alone at home and for motivation put on your favourite music, a fitness DVD or TV programme that gets you going. It will also save money in the long run.
Specific boxing or martial arts training is a great way to increase power but often requires at least one other person for sparring sessions. A way round this is to use a tethered or free standing punch bag. There are plenty of punch bag workouts that prove extremely beneficial and can be done alone.
Again, if you have the space you could invest in a punch bag for your own home. You’ll need to purchase some good quality gloves to avoid injury either way. Then when your training partner returns you can show them the ropes!