My best friend Nicole (love you) asked me to help her out with an at home workout plan. Her goal is to get overall toned and she told me she has about 45 minutes in the morning or a couple hours in the evening to put toward working out. Nicole will be at home where she doesn't have access to machines or weights.
An important step to getting healthy is taking a look at what you're eating, I've blogged a little bit about this before, you can take a look here for my tips.
Maybe soon I will work on some more specific work out plans, but for now here's what I found for my friend. I did a little research and found this site that I absolutely recommend, it's loaded with at home workout routines. And I'm also going to share my Exercise Inspiration pinterest board (here) that is loaded with pictures, quotes and a few put together workouts. Check them both out.
I would start with a little cardio (anything that is going to get your heart rate up). To wake yourself up, warm yourself up and get your blood pumping. At home this could be jogging in place, jumping jacks burpees, etc. A lot of people have opinions about whether you should do cardio before or after a work out if you want more info on that I found this, that might help. Personally if I'm going to do a workout and run I like to do my workout/weight lifting first. So if I'm going to the gym I will start my workout with about 5 minutes of cardio on the bike to warm up, then do my weight lifting, then take off for my run. My reasoning for this is honestly because after my run, I don't have the motivation to lift. I like to get my lifting done first so I can get it all out of the way, that way I know I get it all done, and then go for my run. It's absolutely up to you which way you do things, maybe you feel the opposite. Maybe you're going to choose not to do cardio at all. I think it's an important part of every workout primarily because if you're working out to build muscle, you aren't ever going to see the tone in your muscles if you aren't doing some form of cardio to remove the fat from on top. Whether or not I'm going to put in a run after, I will still start with a quick cardio warm up.
My next suggestion is to break up your work outs into an every other day routine. Monday, Wednesday, Friday do leg and ab exercises. Tuesday, Thursday arms and back. When you're working out you're actually breaking down your muscle fibers to build them up, they need time to heal that's what's making you stronger.
If you're going to work out a muscle, you need to work out it's opposite to keep the tension even in your body. For example if you're going to work out your biceps you should also do tricep work, hamstrings/quads, abs/back.
I would also take time before and after each work out to stretch, take time to warm up and cool down. Make sure you're DRINKING WATER!
If Your Goal is to be Consistent and Maintain an Exercise ProgramIn order to stick with exercise, it needs to fit into your daily routine and lifestyle. It also has to feel good to you. For this reason, it is helpful to pick the type of exercise, the order of exercise and the time of exercise according to what works the best for your body. You may be naturally inclined to feel best if you do endurance exercise first and then do weights. You may also find that your body responds best when you lift weights at one time of the day and go for a run at another. It's OK to let your body, mood or interest determine when you exercise. (By Elizabeth Quinn, About.com Guide)So I would just go through the work outs and make out a plan/schedule that works right for you! Start anywhere and when you're feeling comfortable increase it. If you come across a workout and you don't know what it is or don't understand go to youtube.com, I'm not joking, type it in and you should have no problem finding videos explaining and demonstrating it for you. If I find something that I don't recognize that's absolutely what I do. Most times I will find out that I just new the exercise by a different name. Or maybe you'll find you were doing something incorrectly.
Listen to your body and don't forget to feel good about YOU! That is really what this all should be about! Have fun!