How to stay active during self- quarantine
Due to the current global coronavirus pandemic, thousands of people all over the world have been compelled to put a halt on any activities that involve leaving the house. Although as of the 15th of May 2020 lockdown in Romania has ended, it is still not advisable to visit crowded or public areas, making it hard for people to practice their normal physical activities such as going to the gym, workout studios or even the park. However, the World Health Organization recommends that all children and adolescents, aged 5 to 17, should do “at least 60 minutes a day of moderate to vigorous-intensity physical activity, including activities that strengthen muscle and bone, at least 3 days per week.” Yet, the fact that we are housebound does not mean that we have an excuse to jeopardize our health and resume all physical activity. Especially at this time when we spend a considerable fraction of our day sitting motionlessly while watching movies or reading, it is important to find some time and include exercise in our daily routines. Regular physical activity can not only prevent health problems associated with prolonged sitting down, such as bad posture or the formation of blood clots in your legs, but can also ease anxiety related to coping with the pandemic.
Here are some methods to help prevent sedentary behavior while self-isolating:
1) Follow online tutorials Take advantage of the multitude of online classes available for free on platforms such as YouTube. Exercise tutorials for people of all physical levels, experience and body goals have been made accessible for anyone to follow. Some of the most in vogue and efficient channels are listed below:
Chloe Ting- who has recently gained a lot of popularity especially for her “2 week abs” and fitness challenges that have proven to give noteworthy results!
Popsugar fitness- has a wide range of tutorials, from traditional workouts, to cardio and Zumba classes. Moreover, they often include short breakdowns of often incorrectly performed exercises.
Blogilates- combines pop music with Pilates workouts, all by substituting gym equipment with objects that are likely available to everyone making it perfect for when you are stuck at home with no performant apparatus at your disposal.
2) Exercise with a partner
Social distancing does not mean that we have to interrupt all communication with our friends, especially since technology has allowed us to connect with people from all over the world, so find a friend and challenge them to workout with you! You can set goals, which will motivate you to keep up the exercise, maintain a regular routine every day, and prevent you from slacking behind your companion. You could arrange a video call with your exercise buddy which might make you feel more confident and productive rather than working out by yourself. Since you have a friend to encourage you through the process, this can even increase your power and make you willing to exercise harder in order to race with your partner!
Grooving to the sound of music often succeeds in taking our worries away, but there have also been proven health benefits resulting from dance. Moving to the beat of the music can improve cardiovascular health and boost your balance and strength. Plus, this is the perfect opportunity to develop a new skill while you are stuck in quarantine! So, whether you are following the choreography from your favorite video clips or expressing yourself freely, dance like nobody is around!
4) Stand up
It is ideal to interrupt sedentary time by standing up every 30 minutes in order to remain active and prevent muscular atrophy. The World Health Organization recommends that you could invest in a standing desk, or even set up your own ad hoc desk by stacking a pile of books or other material to the optimum height. And if that is not a good solution for you, resume to taking regular, active breaks.
Even during this time of crisis, the fact that we are not allowed to go outside and make use of the performant gym equipment does not mean that we have to let aside out usual active habits. Everyone can definitely find their own exercise routines that are adequate for their need and resources. Besides being physically active, it is recommended that you also focus on keeping your mind active adequately by spending sedentary time practicing cognitive activities, such as reading, puzzles or board games. So, change in your most neat workout clothes, collect all the necessary equipment, find an adequate place to exercise and unleash yourself!