1984 Olympic gold medal gymnast Scott Johnson shares keys to self-motivation with a series of exercises you can do easily at home.

Fit Factor: Staying in Shape at Home

By Scott Johnson

During this crazy and unfortunate time of uncertainty with the COVID-19 virus affecting almost every aspect of life, it is so important to stay focused and motivated toward your goals! When we do get back to our normal way of life, we need to be prepared for the regular schedule of pushing ourselves in the gym.

Many exercises can be done at home to keep your body and mind in shape and focused. Not only are these exercises beneficial for everyone in general, but also they are useful for periods when an athlete is injured or not able to be in the gym. The biggest challenge: self-motivation!

With today’s virtual tools, you and your teammates, coaches and friends can conduct in-home training sessions.

The following are a few exercises that will keep you conditioned while out of the gym:

Upper body: 

  • Push-ups: both regular and behind-the-back for triceps
  • Sit-ups, V-ups: flutter kicks all to work the abs
  • Plank holds: hold a minimum of one minute

Lower body:

  • Lunges 
  • Toe raises
  • Squat jumps

These simple exercises used in a circuit will build not only strength, but cardio endurance as well. I have done this, and it works wonders. I usually do this circuit four times, but the amount of reps depends on the current condition of each person. For example, push-ups can be five, 10 or 30 per circuit.  


If you have access to exercise bands, this chart is a great tool for low-impact strength and cardio training!




Scott Johnson is a 1984 Olympic Gold Medalist, tumbling and gymnastics expert, and author of “The Round-Off and Back Handspring: A Complete Training Guide.” You can follow his blog, ScottJohnsonsGymExperience.com.