COVID-19 AND EXERCISE: STAYING ACTIVE WHILE SOCIAL DISTANCING

COVID-19, business closures, social distancing, pandemic, and shifts in everyday schedules are upsetting just about every aspect of everyday life — and exercise routines are no exception.

With coronavirus, the outbreak is in complete flow. Gyms, parks, fitness studios, and other public places are resulting in reduced possibilities for physical exercise especially for people who are not able to maintain a workout routine at home. If you are working from home, you may find that you are lying for more extended periods. And, changes in your daily routines such as caring for school going children who are home may make it more challenging to find time to exercise.

For some people it might be tempting to skip their workout during these challenging events, public health officials say that exercise is essential to your physical health and mental well-being during the COVID-19 pandemic.

So, here’s why you should stay active and how you can practice safely during the pandemic.

It’s nothing new to know that the benefits of physical activity and exercise have been proved across the lifespan. We, humans, are meant to move and our multiple body systems work better when we are physically active. However, here are a few reasons why exercise is especially crucial during the outbreak.

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Exercise Helps in Weight Loss

Research shows that exercise helps you stay fuller on less food, lose fat faster, and maintain or even gain muscle while losing fat. It also helps in burning extra calories caused by dietary modifications and balance the consequences of inactive activities.

Exercise Boosts the Immune System

Exercise has immune-boosting benefits that may help your body fight off infections, including COVID-19.

“Exercise increases blood and lymph flow as your muscles contract, it also improves the circulation of immune cells, making them roam the body at a higher rate and higher numbers,” says Study author David Nieman, DrPH, a professor in the department of biology at Appalachian State University and director of the university’s Human Performance Laboratory.

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Exercise Reduces Stress and Anxiety

Workout experts or people who follow a consistent workout routine know that exercise is a proven mood-booster. According to a scientific research, frequent participation in aerobic training has been shown to decrease overall levels of tension, elevate and stabilize mood, and improve sleep and self-esteem.

Do you know only 5 minutes of aerobic exercise can stimulate anti-anxiety effects? Try this mood boosting exercise today.

Exercise Improves Sleep

The BBC reported that the hashtag “can’t sleep” has been trending since people have been stuck in lock-down under stay-at-home orders. Exercise can provide excellent benefits for your sleep and getting a good night’s sleep has also been found to boost your immune system.

How to Stay Physically While Practicing Social Distancing

There are many ways you can be active even while you are practicing social distancing. According to recommendations from the American Heart Association, “adults should aim for at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity physical activity, or at least 75 minutes of vigorous-intensity physical activity, per week.”

  • Take one thing at a time. Try not to overload your day by accomplishing everything at once.
  • There are a lot of great videos on YouTube, Instagram and other social media platforms of people being creative with their workouts. Start taking workout challenges.
  • If you can stay at least 6 feet away from other people, outdoor activities are the safest. Jogging, bicycling, hiking, or walking will not only let you get fresh air.
  • Set an exercise goal such as doing yoga six days a week. Make a plan to work toward achieving it.
  • Consider supporting your local fitness studio or personal trainer by signing up for online fitness classes or training sessions if you have financial resources.

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Stopping the spread of COVID-19 may bring unusual changes to daily routines, but staying strong and healthy through it all is still a priority. We hope these tips will help you to stay motivated and take great care. 

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