Courtesy of Cecilia Hammond
The gym is closed. You’re sitting in bed all day in front of your laptop. You’re trapped with your family and want to run up a wall, but both spatial constraints and the laws of gravity won’t let that happen. You have an unhealthy amount of carbs stockpiled in your basement, and all you’ve eaten since in-person classes were cancelled is pasta. Instead of working on your summer body, you’re getting a quarantine body.
With rec centers shut down in several states and new shelter-in-place orders being issued seemingly every day, it’s difficult to get your typical workout in. But there’s no need to add a healthy lifestyle to the list of things COVID-19 has ruined. There are plenty of out-of-the-box ways to stay in shape while in quarantine that can be done at home and require no workout equipment at all!
Make Netflix NetFIT
Lots of us will spend a great chunk of our time in self-isolation watching movies and television. But catching up on shows we didn’t realize we were missing and rewatching old faves doesn’t mean we have to sacrifice staying fit. If you’re watching shows with commercials, take advantage of those breaks to do jumping jacks, squats, pushups, etc. If you’re watching Netflix, take a nice walk every time you get the dreaded “Are you still watching?” screen.
Go on a walk (or a run, if you want to flex)
Most stay-at-home orders note that citizens are still able to go on walks. Walks and runs are a great way to keep your body moving and are immensely beneficial to your mental health when in constant isolation with the same few people. Take a walk or jog through your neighborhood and even invite a friend (but make sure to stay six feet apart!). Tips: Maybe change out of the pajamas you’ve been wearing all week, and avoid coughing so that fellow walkers don’t try to avoid you).
Do you even lift?
Perhaps the most difficult type of workout to complete at home without additional equipment is weights. Now is the time to use those hand weights and kettlebells if you have them, but if not, try lifting some of the giant bags of rice and beans or the water gallons you’ve stocked up on.
We know you’ve stocked up on an embarrassing amount of toilet paper, so you might as well find another use for them. As many of us have learned the hard way, it’s usually not a great idea to throw a ball around indoors. Playing catch with toilet paper rolls is an infinitely better option to burn some calories — it (probably) won’t break anything, and it won’t hurt anyone if you throw a rogue pass.
Chef it up
With more time on your hands and the advantage of not living in a dorm, you have the opportunity to prepare a healthy meal. Even if you’ve stocked up mostly on carbs, try mixing in some veggies and avoid snacking while binging Netflix.
Take advantage of technology
Not all of us have exercise equipment in our homes, but luckily there are lots of guided workouts that can be done using only your body. YouTube abounds with videos of full-body workouts that take 20 minutes or less. A quick search on the app store reveals hundreds of at-home workout apps for strength, core and cardio.
By figuring out which of the above methods works for you and sticking with it, you can practice a fit lifestyle even while you’re practicing social distancing.