Working out is NOT my favorite thing to do. There. I’ve said it. I’m a health coach and I really HATE working out. However, I know movement is crucial to truly living a healthy life so when I found these 12 awesome YouTube workout videos, I finally made friends with working out. If you’re like me, hopefully you will find these workouts to be very accessible and a jumping off point to finding a home workout plan that will work for you.
Why These 12 Awesome YouTube Workout Videos Instead of a Gym?
Early in our marriage, Kyle and I had a health club membership and quickly realized that our bank account was being hit every month, but we weren’t hitting the club. We canceled (not without the song and dance with the sales guy) and started working out at home. Now a million years later, we are still doing this.
Keep in mind, this was so long ago that YouTube (or the internet for that matter) wasn’t a thing, so we used DVDs (and sad to say I’m pretty sure VHS tapes might have been involved.) But we loved having the flexibility to just walk to the living room to workout vs the many obstacles we had to hurdle to get to a club.
Fast forward to current days and YouTube is our norm. Whether doing a harder core workout like HIIT or Tabata on Mondays, Wednesdays or Fridays or a fast paced yoga flow on Tuesday and Thursday, YouTube is our healthclub. (Wondering about the difference between Tabata and HIIT? This is a great article. You can get the 16-24 hours of fat burning benefits in a 20 minute or less workout.) I’ve also recently added a 20-30 minute walk everyday just for a challenge and to give myself time outside while still learning something awesome from a podcast.
Make These 12 Awesome YouTube Workout Videos Work for You
The real key for consistently working out at all, or especially at home, is to commit to yourself like you would commit to a friend or boss. Don’t let yourself off the hook (unless you’re TRULY sick then you need to rest) but DO find the workouts that work for you. If it stresses you out to workout, it’s counterproductive because the cortisol being pumped out to combat the stress will sabotage your desire to get in shape and/or lose weight.
For me, I know if I don’t workout FIRST THING, I won’t do it. You do you on this. If morning works best, commit and do it. If you find your energy level is super high later in the afternoon, go for it then. As a rule, however, don’t workout after dinner. Your body will be entering “rest and digest” mode and you will not only throw off digestion, but your circadian rhythm which will make going to sleep hard.
In case you’re wondering, here’s my morning routine:
- Wake up and put on workout clothes immediately
- Drink one 12 oz glass of water with lemon essential oil and another 8 oz glass with lemon juice*
- Read a devotional or other meditative material while drinking water
- Set up workout area with mat, weights or whatever I need for the day
- Start workout within 30 minutes of waking up
- Stretch for 5 minutes (while watching something funny or inspirational on YouTube, I would love to say something heady and smart but it’s mostly Parks and Rec outtakes)
- Hit the day feeling accomplished!
12 Awesome YouTube Workout Videos|Yoga
These videos are all from Yoga with Adriene because I feel she has the most accessible style. You will notice they are around 20-25 minutes which matches my time capacity for Tuesday and Thursday mornings. If you have more time, do a couple of them in a row. My criteria for a quick yoga workout is they contain no headstands or handstands and are flow-style yoga which means lots of continual movement. FYI, the last video is only 5 minutes long because I use it as a final stretch or in combination with the HIIT and Tabata workouts below.
12 Awesome YouTube Workout Videos|HIIT and Tabata
These workouts are no longer than 20 minutes. (Some are shorter. See below for explanation and how I use these in combinations.) You can get a very good workout in so much less time doing HIIT and Tabata because of how your body works compared to doing solid cardio – check out the article I linked above for all the science. I love this because I ALWAYS have 20 minutes to spare so there are no excuses. When I thought I had to do an hour of working out, I never did it. The only one of these that isn’t HIIT or Tabata is the 7 Minute Dumbbell workout because I use it in combination with two other workouts that are HIIT and Tabata style.
12 Awesome YouTube Workout Videos|Combinations
While some of the workouts in the combinations below are included in the categories above (and can certainly be done independently if you are super short on time) I have created these combinations from shorter videos to make 20-25 minute workouts and pretty much hit all body parts simply to give us something different to do. Your muscles start getting used to the routine and can start plateauing, so changing it up keeps them working.
YouTube Videos for Yoga Basics and Stretching
Regardless of what workout I do, I do some yoga stretches every day – down dog, pigeon pose, extended child’s pose, happy baby and cobbler poses at the very least. Five minutes is all it takes to keep from getting injuries from overworked and underloved muscles. I used to think I didn’t have time to stretch, now I make sure and take the time because it feels so amazing. It is actually my little guilty pleasure at the end of my workout since I also take this time to watch a funny or inspirational YouTube video. Okay, I will be real with you…98% of the time it is outtakes from Parks and Rec and not an inspirational video since I find laughter truly sets me in a good place to head to my computer and start working for the day. Again, find what works for you.
Tell Me Your Favorite YouTube Workouts
I would love to hear what you think about these workouts, or feel free to share your favorite YouTube Workouts in the comments below or over on Facebook in our Healthy Happy Real community.
*Curious about why both? The flavor of both helps me pound 20 oz of water first thing in the morning, however the lemon oil supports the detox process of the liver and the lemon juice, while also a liver cleanser, additionally wakes up stomach acid to aid digestion throughout the day.