When we think about exercise, ‘lazy’ isn’t normally the word that comes to mind. In fact, even just stepping foot in a gym requires motivation and energy — pretty much the exact opposite of laziness. So, when we’re planning out our workouts for the week, ‘do nothing’ doesn’t usually appear on the schedule.
But if a new workout trend is anything to go by, this may be about to change. According to Michelle Morrey, a group fitness expert at London’s Equinox gym, there’s been a shift in focus from high-intensity session to ‘lazy workouts’ that involve doing, well, not much at all!
People are realising the importance of a holistic and balanced approach to fitness. And I’ve seen far more interest in regenerative classes.
-Michelle Morrey, via Daily Mail
Unfortunately, the classes aren’t ‘lazy’ in the sense that you get to lie on a lounge and watch TV. Rather, they focus on breathing, stretching, flexibility, and mobility— all things that fitness experts have come to acknowledge are just as important as physical strength and agility.
In the past, I’ve personally been guilty of feeling like these kinds of classes aren’t ‘real workouts.’ Nevertheless, I used to drag myself along to the flexibility and mobility classes at my small group training gym each week. As much as it wasn’t really my jam, there’s no denying that the sessions improved my overall fitness. Not only did it help me to lift weights more efficiently (probably by increasing my range of movement), my muscles were less tight and sore after my sessions. Not only that, I felt surprising relaxed after the classes (especially compared to after my burpee-filled HIIT sessions!) According to Elle Landgren, the stretching expert and yogi behind Elle Fit Active, there’s a good reason behind this.
Even if you don’t feel peaceful whilst you stretch or do gentle exercise, on a physiological level your body is starting to find balance. It will come out of the fight or flight state and things will begin to return to normal. The more you do it the better it gets.
We’ve written before about the impact stress hormones can have on your body when you’re trying to lose weight. So, if you’re constantly slogging it out in intense gym sessions and still can’t seem to shift that last layer of fat, there’s a good chance these low-key workouts are the missing piece of your fitness puzzle. Flick through the gallery for our favourite styles of ‘lazy workouts.’
It doesn’t get much lazier than having a snooze in the middle of your working day — and that’s exactly what the NapTime class at Sydney’s The Indigo Project involves! It’s no secret that sleep has some amazing regenerative effects and having tried this 30-minute-class, I can definitely say you walk away feeling focused and revitalised.