5 simple exercises for home-based entrepreneurs

Running your business from home is a great way to save on expenses when you’re starting out. You avoid paying for office rent, eating out at lunch and money spent commuting. But, one area where you could end up paying is your health. If your home-office routine means you walk no more than a few meters from your bed to your desk each day, and then sit in front of a computer for 8 (or more) hours, you could be doing real damage to your health.
Fortunately, research suggests that you can get a lot of health benefits from doing as little as 15 minutes of exercise per day. So, let’s look at 5 simple exercises you can do in your own home which will get your heart racing, without interrupting the flow of your work too much.

Here are 5 simple exercises for home-based freelancers and entrepreneurs:

1. Burpees

Burpees offer a full-body workout which will burn calories fast and get you sweating. Aim for three sets of 10 burpees, with a 30 second break between each set.

  • Begin stood up straight before crouching down and placing your hands on the floor in front of your
  • ‘Hop’ your feet backwards so you’re in plank position
  • Then, jump your feet forward to crouch position again, before leaping into the air with arms extended
  • When you land, move immediately back to crouch and repeat

Burpee

2. Mountain climber

Another high-intensity quick home workout, mountain climbers are a powerful exercise for getting almost every muscle in your body firing.

  • Once again, begin in plank position
  • Next, rapidly bring one knee up to your chest before returning it to plank before switching to the other leg. Do this as fast as possible
  • Do three sets of mountain climbers lasting 45 seconds each, with a 30 second break between each set

Mountain climber exercise

3. Squats

Squats are a powerful exercise for your leg muscles. After a few rounds, you’ll really start to feel the burn.

  • Stand with your feet in line with your shoulders and your arms in front of you
  • • Gradually bend your knees while keeping your torso straight until it almost feels like you’re in sitting position

    • Then, drive up through your legs so you’re standing up straight

    • Do 3 sets of 10 squats with a 15 second break between sets

Squat exercise at home

4. Raised push-ups

By placing your feet at shoulder height – on your couch or a coffee table, for instance, you increase the benefits of standard push-ups.

  • Get into plank position, before placing your feet on a stable surface which is parallel in height to your shoulders
  • Then, with your hands placed in line with your shoulders, bend your elbows so your chin is almost touching the ground before pushing back up
  • Do 3 sets of 10 push-ups with a 30 second break between sets

Raised pushed up

5. Jumping jacks

A great way to get your heart rate up, jumping jacks also help tone your legs and arms in this quick home workout.

  • Stand up straight with your arms by your side
  • Next, jump up, and simultaneously swing your arms up into the air (watch out for lights!) and your legs out to the side into a star shape
  • When you land, return your arms to your sides before repeating in quick succession
  • Do three 30 second sets of jumping jacks with 15 second breaks

Jumping jack exercise at home

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Len is a tech and business writer who covers small business and startup advice and has appeared in many print and digital publications. He lives in London, UK, where he's also a sub editor on a national newspaper. He loves to travel and has lived in France, Spain, Senegal and Rwanda.

5 Online Service Businesses you can start on $1,000 or less

Starting an online service business doesn’t need to cost the earth. With some dedication and a little bit of luck, you can start an online services business for as little as $1,000. Let’s look at five popular kinds of online service businesses you can launch with limited capital.

1. Event Planning

To become an event planner, you need little more than a website where people can book your time and a knowledge of your niche. It’s a wise idea to choose a specific kind of event that you help plan for, as this will allow you to differentiate yourself in the market. Whether it’s kids’ parties, weddings or business networking events, you need to make a name for yourself in one specific sector.

You’ll need to be able to source entertainment, refreshments and space for your events, but once this is organized, you’ll be able to include these in your prices and start turning a profit fast.

2. Online Tutoring

Got a college degree in Physics? Know a language that people the other side of the world want to learn? Have years of experience in a sector and can provide guidance and mentoring? Online tutoring is a great, low cost way of selling your expertise in a specific area. You need little more than a laptop and some lesson plans to get started and making money!

3. Copy Editing and Proof Reading

Whether it’s reports, brochures, whitepapers or guide books, there’s ever more companies producing ever more content. To make sure that content is well written and free of grammatical mistakes, many companies turn to copy editors and proof readers. If you can spot a spelling mistake a mile off – and proof copy fast and efficiently, your services will be in high demand. And, because you need nothing more than a computer (and maybe a printer) to get started, this is one of the cheapest businesses to start around.

4. IT Consulting

As businesses use technology more and more, the demand for friendly, efficient and knowledgeable IT consultants keeps on growing. Whether you’ve got experience installing hardware or are more comfortable migrating databases or coding applications, there’s an almost limitless number of companies who will need your help.

5. Virtual Assistant

Many companies have a range of jobs and pieces of work that their own employees don’t have the time or skills to do. Whether it’s chasing customers about invoices, managing their social media or data entry, if you have versatile office skills you can offer your customers a huge help – all you need is a website to get started.

Whatever your business idea, you need to make it easy for customers to book your services. Learn how you can do that in just seven minutes here!

5 trends for entrepreneurs in 2018

All too often, small business owners are so focused on the present that they fail to see big changes which could have a huge impact on their business. Being aware of what’s around the corner can help you adapt your business model and strategy for the coming evolutions.
Here are five entrepreneur trends which will likely affect your small business in 2018.

1. Massive growth in freelancing and self-employment

According to this Nasdaq article,

43% of the US workforce will be freelance or self-employed by 2020 – compared to 34% in 2017.

That’s a big leap, and so we can expect 2018 to be a major year for people starting their own businesses.

2. Growth in remote teams

As a corollary of the expansion in freelancing, we can also expect a huge growth in remote teams working for established companies. As an entrepreneur, you may well employ a number of full time staff in-house, yet the expansion in freelancers means you can also build remote teams of less permanent employees anywhere in the world, supported by cloud apps and email.

Read our review of Asana, one of the new generation of online task management tools for remote teams

3. Ever more workspace options

We’ve written before about the places freelancers can run their businesses outside of the home. However, in 2018, we expect the range and diversity of workspaces specifically designed for the needs of entrepreneurs to keep on growing. You can expect to find more offices with better deals as the market adapts to growth in demand from solopreneurs and start-ups for low cost and social workspaces.

4. LinkedIn up, Twitter down

It’s no secret that Twitter has struggled to monetize the platform for a long time, and we can expect the number of new users to continue its long term decline. On the other hand, after a massive injection of cash following Microsoft’s buyout, we can expect LinkedIn to keep on growing and become an ever more powerful platform for entrepreneurs and freelancers to find jobs.

5. Regulation of the freelance economy

From Uber to Upwork, we expect 2018 to be the year that regulators begin to play catch up with the gig economy. While for many freelancers, the opportunity to find work online is hugely beneficial, offering a tonne of flexibility and great work, it needs to be acknowledged that it does open some freelancers up to exploitation, poor working conditions and instability. So, we expect more regulations to emerge around the sector next year.

Reckon we’ve missed a major 2018 trend for small businesses? Leave your comments in the section below!