During this time of uncertainty there are a few things that we can do to remain certain in ourselves. Finding out how to stay active at home is a top priority. Of course, we need to socially distance ourselves from others, meaning staying home instead of going to the crowded gym where germs are constantly passed around. I know this means switching up your routines, and I know the feeling of losses instead of gains may be a big factor to wanting to continue going to the gym. However, during this time-frame it is imperative that we focus on our goals as well as the health of our communities.
There are many activities that we can do within the comforts of our own homes, yards and garages without risking the spread of COVID-19 any further. These exercises can be adjusted to any level of expertise so that they fit your current routine. Here are a few suggestions that will help you get active and remain active during our Social Distancing phase of the Coronavirus. You may need a few pieces of equipment, such as kettlebells, dumbbells, steps or stairs, but for the most part you’ll use your body as your equipment.
Walking. Walking can help you just feel better in general and help revive your soul from the craziness of what we are currently dealing with. Walking also helps relieve joint and muscle pain as well as lowering your chances of heart disease, diabetes and stroke. You should try a brisk walk for 30 minutes a day to help you stay active during this time period.
Stand. I know this seems like an odd recommendation, however, the less you sit, the more your muscles work. If you stand up while doing things like eating, you’re spending less time in a stationary position, also you’re more likely to move more. So, just try standing a little more.
Gardening. This is the perfect time of year to get out and start a beautiful flowerbed, or even an abundant fresh herb and vegetable garden. You’ll be soaking in the sun, digging, potting, planting and pruning all throughout the summer. This is an activity that helps you remain active even after COVID-19 has passed, plus you get yummy fresh fruits and vegetables out of the deal!
Biking. Take a bike ride. It doesn’t have to be anything crazy, or a wild biking adventure through the mountains. Just ride your bike a few miles and take an adventure. Still recommending at least 30 minutes of this blood-pumping activity.
Jogging. Of course, if I recommend walking and biking then I am going to recommend a jog! This would be for the more advanced people who already have a good cardio routine implemented into their routine. Just remember to stretch afterwards and go the distance you would normally go. Keeping active is just as important as getting active!
Tai Chi. Tai Chi is a great cardio exercise to get your heart-rate up and stay at a steady cardio targeted zone. Tai Chi is a form of Martial Arts that dates to ancient China. It can help with metabolic disorders such as diabetes and cardiovascular diseases and help with obesity. As you progress in Tai Chi from beginner, your routine will become more intense. Tai Chi can also help with mental clarity, depression and anxiety.
Now that we have cardio covered, I will also suggest some weight training exercises so that your muscles get lean, strong and you’re improving as much as possible daily. These activities are great for beginners and advanced alike, the only difference would be the amount of reps and weight. These exercises will target your core, legs, arms, booty, and shoulders.
Dumbbell Side Bends. This exercise helps improve balance, and oblique muscles which improve the abdomen muscles. Get a weight you are comfortable with, nothing too heavy to start out with for the first set of 15 reps. You’ll simply bend your body to the side, bringing the dumbbell to the lower portion of the outer thigh. Now with set 2, increase your weight to a heavier option and complete 15 reps. Take a 60 second rest time between each set. For your third and final set of 16 reps, use your maximum weight for this.
Dumbbell Step-Ups. This is one of my personal favorite exercises to do. This exercise works multiple muscle groups at one time. You’ll be hitting your legs, abdomen and your back muscles all at once, plus doing a cardio exercise because it can bring your body into a higher heart-rate zone. To do this exercise you’ll need something to step up on, if you’re doing this from home you can use the bottom stair of your staircase or front porch. Get a weight you are comfortable with, nothing too heavy to start out with for the first set of 15 reps. Now with set 2, increase your weight to a heavier option and complete 15 reps. Take a 60 second rest time between each set. For your third and final set of 16 reps, use your maximum weight for this.
Wide Leg Dumbbell Squats. This exercise will help strengthen your leg muscles in the quadriceps region as well as balance and range of motion for your hips. Simply stand with your legs spread slightly wider than shoulder width, holding a dumbbell in front of the pelvic region, you’ll simply bend your legs, keeping your back straight and go as low as you can without pain. Do the first set of 15 with the lighter weight. Now with set 2, increase your weight to a heavier option and complete 15 reps. Take a 60 second rest time between each set. For your third and final set of 16 reps, use your maximum weight for this. If you are unable to use a weight and have a balancing issue, place the back of a chair in front of you and position your hands on each side of the backrest, use your leg muscles to bend and come back up only using the chair for a security with balance.
Seated Leg Extensions. This exercise will help to strengthen and tone your leg muscles by having you focus on your movement and controlling your speed. Bring your leg up as high as you can and concentrate on bringing it down with controlled flexed movement. Start this with 3 sets of 15 reps and a 60 second rest between each set.
These are all very important things to do while being restricted in our everyday life, I hope that some of these recommendations help you get active and stay active in your everyday life, not just during the Social Distancing phase of COVID-19. I hope you are all safe, stay safe and healthy. If you have any other recommendations, please leave a comment, I would love to hear from you!