Like most folks, I feel my best when I can get a little exercise in every day. Unlike most folks, however, I don’t have a home of my own (at the moment) and am currently housesitting in various parts of the country for a few weeks here and there at a time. Don’t get me wrong, I ain’t complaining! I love my vagabond life. Sometimes, though, getting in a good workout can be challenging, especially when I am in a snowy place or I don’t know the terrain well enough to go for a crisp walk (other than swimming, my preferred exercise modality).
Then, not too long ago, I discovered these two apps that really changed things around for me. They are both subscription-based and require an internet connection but, hey, for folks who travel a lot for work or pleasure or who don’t want to be pinned down to someone else’s schedule for a good workout, in my opinion they are worth it!
Daily Burn runs at $14.95 a month for the basic plan of live-streaming video after either a 1-month or 3-month free pass (they run specials). I’ve had my Daily Burn subscription now for about a year and I use its programs 1 to 2 times a week. The offering for fairly-traditional dance, aerobic, strength training, and Pilates workouts is fairly extensive. I have followed along with something called True Beginner for about 6 months now and it really works for me. Justin is the instructor for this series and I like his upbeat attitude as well as his emphasis on Shotokan karate, which gives his classes a mind-body feel. True Beginner is for folks who are as the name applies when it comes to workouts. Maybe they have had an injuring, are older or are starting out again after a long hiatus.
I have had some issues with a pesky frozen shoulder so the pace in True Beginner is just right for me. Other classes are fairly intense if you want more of a challenge. They also just started something called 365, which is an hour-long live, moderately-paced morning aerobics class (but you can pick up a recording of it anytime during the day that it has aired). This class is about an hour long and included some tips for healthy living which are fun and inspiring for the morning. In general, I like Daily Burn because it allows me to pre-choose a time frame for my class total running time (20 minutes to a half hour is good for me! ), get on a program and push “play” to get going. It’s a no-brainer. The system has other goodies like virtual coaching, a nutrition program and ways to track your progress as well, but I haven’t really dove in to all that yet. The only drawback of Daily Burn for me was the lack of a good selection of yoga classes, but that problem was solved with…
Gaia use to be GaiaTV. Yes, this is that same company, Gaiam, that has been offering videos and DVD-based yoga series featuring folks like Rodney Yee and Seane Corn since 1988. The creators of this new venture, gaia.com, really did their homework. The site seems to have just about every yoga DVD Gaiam ever produced in streaming-video format, plus they continue to put new offerings on the site every week. Membership begins at $9.99 a month. They are currently running a 1-month free pass special.
My favorite on Gaia these days are classes taught by Gina Caputo. Her eclectic style and positive/funny demeanor get me going when I am feeling low energy. I also like Morning Yoga for Beginners with a young Rodney Yee (circa 1990’s, he never goes out of style!). Like Daily Burn, the workouts range from 15 minutes up to more than an hour. Unlike Daily Burn, however, you cannot specify what timeframe you want beforehand, so in the beginning, you may have to do a little digging through the hundreds of yoga offerings they have to find the ones that you want. The system allows you to bookmark and categorize your favorites in something called “My Playlist” (under your username), so once you have checked the ones you want to work with, it is easy to access them and you are good to go.
Gaia.com also has a huge selection of consciousness-based documentaries, fiction movies and series to choose from and one of these days (when I have some free time…haa haa), I plan on eating all these up to. Hey, maybe I can squeeze in a Gaia.co movie-binging retreat one of these days!
Some examples of other series offerings are Hidden Origins with Michael Tellinger and Beyond Belief with Brian Wilcock. There are also live recorded talks from events like Wanderlust on subjects centering on yoga, Ayurveda, mindfulness, etc. Besides the yoga workouts, which I look forward to plugging in to every morning for at least 15 to 20 minutes of conscious stretching to start my day, I have enjoyed the How to Meditate series with Mark Williams and Bill Filter, which is a basic primer about meditation techniques and some discussion as to the science behind it by a couple of guys that look like they just pulled up in their 4 by 4 trucks from somewhere in the hill country. Adorable and very informative!
I hope you check out these two sites if you are committed to keeping your body MOVING for stress relief (and just cuz it’s good for you) but your life and lifestyle has you moving from house to house or from appointment to appointment. Of course, it goes without saying that both of these offerings would work well for any kind of retreat you may be planning for yourself in the future.
For me, I love the fact that I can just slide out of bed, push a button and have a world-class instructor get me going while I am in my PJs. It sure beats trying to get out the door and find a parking space at the local gym, where ever that happens to be!
Do you have a workout routine for people on the go that you would like to share? Please tell us about it in the Comments section below!