Exercise During a Pandemic
A lot of people in the world have likely been affected in one way or another regarding the covid-19 pandemic. Unfortunately, with all the negative side effects it has brought upon us we must stay strong, adapt to the changing times and continue on a path to being healthy and happy.
This leads us into our next topic, which is ways and ideas to stay fit, healthy, and active through exercise during the pandemic. I am sure lots of people have struggled with self discipline, sacrifices and staying in a normal schedule day to day. I know it has affected the way I live and train day to day and will continue to change month after month.
Whether you have lost your job, can’t perform the hobbies you enjoy or even just miss going out with friends to socialize and laugh, it can be hard to adapt and get used to “a new normal”. This new normal is no doubt a new challenge to most, or maybe it’s affected you even worse. We must stay on top of our own health and lives no matter what especially during times where we are susceptible to a virus.
With local gyms closed all over as well as sports that we all used to partake in make it more difficult then ever to stay in shape or get in shape. I hope to give some basic ideas for people out there in ways they can create the self-discipline to get out there sweat and still find a way to get exercise even when it seems more difficult then ever.
No gym – No problem
Even without a gym we have tons of options to get exercise whether we think so or not. Many of them may be new to us or out of our comfort zone but we must adapt and take on new challenges if we want to succeed in staying active now.
Even if you can just get out every other day for a nice walk in nature this will have many benefits for your body and mind. We need to get out of the house and allow ourselves to be relaxed and calm. Hopefully, you live somewhere where it’s not too crowded and you have some space to get out in the woods or out on a nice path for at least 30 minutes a few times a week.
Get Resistance Bands
This has helped me greatly since the gyms have all closed. I purchased many types of resistance bands, but I will share a great kit that can work mostly anywhere you go. These allow me to either workout in my house if need be or take them outside and get some sun while getting in a workout. The benefit of using resistance bands is you are being much easier on your joints with less chance of injury as well as getting constant tension on the muscle throughout the range of motion.
This is another great way I’ve been able to continue with my yoga practice is to do it at home. I throw my mat down and usually do between 20-30 minutes per session. There is a fantastic channel I found on YouTube called Yoga with Adriene. She is down to earth with very practical yoga sessions which are all free. Schedule a couple of these sessions into your week and you will be well on your way to feeling great.
Sprinting is one of the best full body exercises in my opinion. It shocks the body greatly and can promote muscle growth. Go outside and do 10 sets of 30m, 50m, or 100m sprints. Your body will be aching for days and you will likely work a lot of muscles you normally don’t target during a workout or sport. Doing sprints outside once a week can push your body to levels beyond what you thought and make you an all around better athlete or in better shape in general.
Even though a lot of people may not be going to the gym or exercising as regular as they once were when things were more “normal” that doesn’t mean we have to give up on our bodies because we’re not as active. Foam rolling is critical to recovery and spending time before or after we exercise is important. Getting rid of the knots, tight areas and flushing out that lactic acid will keep you less prone to injury and in an overall better state of well-being. There are many different types of rollers out there and my favorite by far is a company called Trigger Point. I have a bunch of there rollers and will recommend a few of my favorites that I would recommend throwing in your gym bag or have at your house. I also recommend grabbing a standard lacrosse ball as this can help to get in tighter areas and relieve a lot of tension:
The vibrating roller as well as the ball are my all-time favorites. They are extremely compact and have various frequencies of vibrations. They aid in the recovery process of rolling even more and help dramatically. These are recommended by Tom Brady in his book - TB12. He goes into great detail of his routines as well as recovery and he emphasizes foam rolling and pliability to be at the foundation of everything for him and are a key reason why he has been able to play at the top of the NFL for countless seasons.
Play Sports with a Friend
We all should want to help in the cause and continue to stay social distant from others. That being said there are some fantastic sports or activities you can still partake in that are safe for you and others like:
Throwing a football or Frisbee
Having someone to keep you accountable and to go to the park with can keep you both on track.
Lastly, I want to remind everyone of the fantastic body weight exercises they can do each morning or afternoon from home or outside such as:
These will get your heart rate elevated while getting you stronger than before. Perform them everyday or even just a couple of times a week and aim for a higher number or reps or longer time to perform each exercise week after week.
You will have to get creative to continue your fitness journey or begin it right now. Scheduling it into your calendar will help you to stay accountable. Perform your exercise of choice early in the morning to make sure your day does not take over and you are too tired or run out of time later.
We are going to have to get out of our comfort zones and perform different and new tasks to us to achieve a healthy mind and body. Do something every day to get your blood flowing and your endorphins going. Work hard and never give up on yourself. Thanks so much for taking the time to read this I greatly appreciate it and hope it helped you in some way.
In best health,