Based in Sydney, Australia, Foundry is a blog by Rebecca Thao. Her posts explore modern architecture through photos and quotes by influential architects, engineers, and artists.

On demand, at-home fitness videos and programs are trending - here are my five favorites, right now.

On demand, at-home fitness videos and programs are trending - here are my five favorites, right now.

Working up a sweat at least 4-5 days a week is one of the most important things that you can do for your physical and mental health. But for many of us, pricey memberships and classes, scheduling conflicts or the inconvenience of driving, make it rather difficult to stick to a routine. 

Thankfully, times are a changing, and the variety of at-home workout options are only getting bigger and better. 

Since forfeiting my gym membership nearly three years ago, I’ve committed myself to regularly working out almost entirely at home. I decided to make a long-term investment in one cardio machine (a Peloton spin bike), along with some minor purchases including a yoga mat, three and five pound free weights and some resistance bands to get me started, and I’d free style my workout routine.

The perks of not caring about what I wear or my tomato face, machine availability, and saving time and money never get old. On the other hand, there have been plenty of times when my workouts began to feel stale and boring, and days when I couldn’t find the energy to motivate and challenge myself to go harder, faster or longer. 

It can be hard to replicate the energy in the air at a gym that gives you the second wind that you need, or the challenges you must endure and push through in instructor-lead group classes.

 But it’s getting easier.

Over the last few years there have been major strides in the world of at-home fitness, from PDF workout guides and apps, to video downloads and live streaming your favorite in-studio classes. Most programs are created for you to do at home or while you travel, using limited inexpensive equipment or none at all - and most (if not all) of them are a fraction of the cost of joining a gym or purchasing in-studio classes.

I’ve tried my fair share of the options available over the last year. So if you’re looking to try something new, be sure to check out my thoughts, experiences and reviews below!

Yoga Glo

What it is: Subscription based online yoga and meditation classes, that range in length and level of difficulty. You can access classes from anywhere, on desktop, laptop, tablet or smart phone as long as you have internet access. 

Cost: $18/month for an unlimited access to classes unlimited online yoga and meditation for.

 Pros:

  • 15 day free trial
  • wide variety of styles and practices for different concerns and objectives (i.e. pre-natal, flexibility,etc. )
  • Over 3000 classes and 12 styles of practice, there’s something for everyone.  
  • over 40 programs designed to help you achieve your goals and objectives; classes are selected for you to schedule any time you like and include e-mail reminders in advance.

Cons: 

  • With 42 teachers, it can take quite a bit of time before finding one whose style of teaching you prefer.

Model Fit

What it is: Online subscription based classes designed to mirror the popular studio classes in NYC and LA. The workout focuses on stabilizing muscles throughout the body while smaller muscle groups are targeted through minor, repetitive movements that results in an effective ‘burn’ feeling from muscle exhaustion and long, lean elegant muscles.

Cost: $19.99/month for an unlimited access to classes online.

Pros:

  • classes are between 5 and 20 minutes, for a short yet effective workout for those pressed for time
  • classes are segmented by muscle group, allowing you to choose the portion of your body you want to focus on
  • movements are simple and easy to learn
  • not all classes require equipment
  • focusing on small muscle groups and stabilization, instead of large and chaotic movements such as burpees, the workout is less prone to causing injury or muscle strain

Cons: 

  • relatively new, so class content is somewhat limited.
  • doesn’t offer any internal system or infrastructure for things like tracking classes, goal setting, or personalizing your account. 

Kait Hurley

What it is: A monthly subscription to ‘move and mediate’ classes online that combine light or no weight strength training to improve body tone and flexibility, as well 5-20 minute guided meditation only classes.

Cost: $19.99/month for an unlimited access to classes online.

Pros:

  • 15 day free trial
  • strength and toning classes are categorized by length - short classes range from 15-22 minutes; medium length classes from 30 - 40 minutes; and longer classes from 45 minutes to more than an hour.
  • movements are mostly simple, and more difficult motions are given clear and easy to follow instructions.
  • minimal equipment is required (mat, very light free weights).
  • classes have added focus on achieving mental clarity with breathing techniques throughout and a brief meditation at the very end.
  • new classes are added monthly

Cons: 

  • only one teacher to choose from (however, Kait is full of positive energy and very likable).
  • video library is somewhat limited relative to other workout subscription services.

Fitness Blender

What it is: No cost, instant access to more than 500 full length cardiovascular and strength training workout videos.

Cost: FREE

Pros:

  • cost-effective
  • includes a very wide variety of workouts including kickboxing, pilates, yoga, barre, HIIT,  kettlebell, strength training, plyometrics and more.
  • workouts range in length, from 5 to 85 minutes. 
  • effective filters allow you to choose your preferred duration, difficulty, area of focus, and type of training to help narrow your search.
  • the ability to ‘favorite’ workouts that you enjoyed or want to eventually try
  • has a personal online calendar for scheduling your workouts
  • includes access to a library of healthy recipes to support you on your health and fitness journey.
  • also features 22 workout programs starting at $9 and up to $25, as well as meal plans for omnivores, vegetarians, and vegan for only $25.

Cons:

  • only two fitness instructors to choose from

Amanda Kloots (Dance Cardio)

What it is: Online unlimited streaming of cardio, toning and jump rope videos. Videos are sold individually and inspired by Amanda’s signature Dance Cardio and Rope Toning workout classes NYC.

Cost: Dance Cardio - $19.95

Pros:

  • Try a dance cardio workout, without the intimidation factor that comes with a group class setting. 
  • Amanda carefully walks you through six dance routines, step-by-step, preparing your for a final run through, which you’ll perform at the end of each dance sequence. Formula ensures you learn the steps at a reasonable pace, and keeps you moving so you will break a significant sweat.
  • no equipment required.
  • Amanda’s positive energy is infectious, and the focus required for choreography forces you to think only about the task at hand.
  • raises your heart rate and is genuinely fun.

Cons:

  • while she offers two other videos (rope toning and rope cardio - both $19.95 each), there is only one Dance cardio video to choose from.
  • no option to play without the selected music and substitute your own, if it’s not your taste.
Grain-free sweet potato breakfast bowl

Grain-free sweet potato breakfast bowl

Coconut matcha dream balls

Coconut matcha dream balls