Updates about this year’s COVID-19 outbreak are all over the news. Everyone – even those without any symptoms – has been asked to self-quarantine to keep people healthy and to refrain from overwhelming our health care system with a sudden onset of serious COVID-19 cases. Non-essential services have shut down and there seems to be little to do besides sit at home and twiddle our thumbs.
However, lounging on the couch for days on end is probably not going to make any of us feel better about the challenge in front of us or get any closer towards maintaining your health. I encourage you to use this time of (forced) stillness to establish some healthy habits and to help you get one step closer to your fitness goals. Here are a few things you can do at home to stay on track with your fitness journey:
Go Outside (Safely!)
It’s still springtime and the weather is getting better by the day. Take advantage of your extra free time and the longer days by going outside and getting some steps in. Not only will going outside keep you active, but it will also get you some sun exposure, which will boost your vitamin D levels and your mood! This can help keep the cabin fever and quarantine blues away. If you do go outside, please remember to practice physical distancing by keeping 6 feet apart from other people.
Try Bodyweight Workouts Online
Some of us are much more familiar with exercises that you can do in the gym with lots of equipment, so it can be hard to figure out how to exercise without all the gadgets. Fortunately, bodyweight exercises can be just as challenging and just as good at working your muscles and cardiovascular system! Try a few of these moves out in the comfort of your home.
Self – Compassion
I really encourage each and every one of you to practice self-compassion. It is a hard time for everyone, so there’s no point in beating yourself up because you couldn’t get your regular 60-minute workout in. Keep your body moving as much as you can so you can feel sharp and calm. If you feel you have stress, lower the expectation and start small. Ten minutes is a good start.
Explore the Power of Social Media
Gyms and community centres are closed, which means there are thousands of personal trainers and group class instructors who are also sitting at home without any work to do. Many of them have taken to social media and are offering free online classes during the quarantine. This is an awesome opportunity to shake your exercise routine up with new classes!
Take Deep Breaths
Stress is related to weight gain and a number of chronic illnesses, so a major part of staying on track to your fitness goals is to reduce your stress levels. During an extremely stressful time like this, it’s even more important to practice your favourite mindfulness activity. This can look like doing a yoga DVD workout, finding a guided meditation on YouTube, or just stopping to take 10 deep breaths every few hours. Proper breathing will help keep you calm and centered during a time of ambiguity and panic.
Posted by Burke