Novel Ways to Make Yourself at Home

Exercising with online videos made Constance Hall realize her TV is too small. Photo: Peloton

Most of us have been “social distancing” for several weeks now. Although we have to get out of the house for groceries, a walk, or a sanity escape, we’ve been spending way more time at home than usual.  

Many people are asking themselves, “Do I love where I live?” and, more important, can my home support the independent lifestyle I’m currently forced into?  

We may find, after all this is behind us, that our homes can become more hospitable for work, entertainment, and healthy living. The current changes in our lifestyle may leave a lasting impression. 

WORTH THE WEIGHT
I’ve been asking myself why I never installed a home gym. For one, I live five minutes from Club Fit. Plus, I don’t have a basement, and my ceilings are low. Still, I’m envious of my friends with Pelotons and weight racks. 
 

Luckily, the weather is mild, but a treadmill would make seclusion more tolerable. If you’re like me, and can’t dedicate an entire room to exercise, there are some reasonably-priced basics you can add to your home to make exercise a little more accessible.   

  • A yoga mat is not just for yoga– use it for abs, stretching, planks and free weight work. 
  • A set of free weights –based on your fitness level, choose three weights to use for arms, back-, and chest exercises. If you’re a complete beginner, I suggest 3, 5- and 8-pound weights. 
  • Exercise bands– they come in different thicknesses, and can be used for stretching or resistance (strength).

The quarantine has opened my eyes to a whole world of exercise classes available on YouTube. Some require equipment, but for others you’ll just need a mat.  

I’m surprised how pleasant it is to work out at home. If you can connect with like-minded people, you’ll find live classes on Zoom.us and other platforms. 

UPGRADING YOUR TV 

Online exercise is one of the things that makes me realize my TV is too small. I spoke with Richard Zuckerman, owner of Enveloping Sound in Briarcliff, who said that the typical TV in a family room is 65-in. (diagonal) and ideally has surround sound for give a theater-like experience.  

TVs today need a strong wi-fi signal to deliver streaming services such as Netflix, Hulu, and music. Now that we’re working from home, people are discovering the inadequacies of their wi-fi signal.  

When called in to address that problem, Zuckerman first measures the current wi-fi strength throughout the house, with particular focus on where the signal is most needed. Is it strong enough? Is there interference from neighboring homes, baby monitors, or a microwave?  

Through a variety of methodologies, such as relocating the router, and installing extenders or a mesh wi-fi system, your home can become a more efficient place to work and binge. 

As a designer, I’ve worked alone at home for over 15 years. So, if you’re home, and would like to discuss a design issue, email me at constance@constancehalldesign.com and we can arrange a time to talk. In the meantime, stay home and stay safe.

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About the Author: Constance Hall