Posted on Mar 13, 2020, 3 p.m.
Most people really can’t stay that long being stuck inside their homes without going at least a little bit stir crazy, but staying physically active can help your physical and mental health during any such time according to experts.
Currently businesses and schools across the globe are encouraging and opting to have employees work from home where possible and partake in remote learning to help with containment attempts and social distancing to limit the further spread of COVID-19.
While this is a great idea being inside for extended periods of time can leave a person feeling somewhat isolated and be very stressful not to mention being boring. The CDC is recommending that people maintain a healthy routine during this time which includes a healthy diet and regular exercise to stave off the anxiety associated with social distancing.
Being stuck at home for whatever reason may seem great after first, after long periods of time it isn’t really appealing any more after several days for some, but if you are there are a variety of ways to remain physically active right from the comfort of your home.
Check out online exercise programs such as yoga which is not just good for the body but also great for the mind by helping to relieve stress, emotional health, sleep, flexibility, balance, and breathing. Yoga can also help to relieve lower back and neck pains while helping to manage anxiety and any negative/depressive feelings. You don’t need any fancy equipment either, just comfy clothing.
While this is a great time to catch up on movies and series with a good binge, while you are working/studying from home try to avoid spending too much time in front of that screen being inactive. Set reminders to get up and move around a little and perhaps do some stretching. Stretching is simple and also requires no special equipment, you can also find plenty of programs on the internet to follow along. Additionally stretching can help improve your mood while making your muscles feel better.
Walking is another great exercise that does not require any special equipment. Try taking a break in the day and go for a walk, you can do this in your home, in the backyard, or around the block. You should aim for at least 30 minutes a day of physical activity to maintain a healthy weight and improve your mood. This 30 minutes can even be broken up into shorter sessions of say 10 minutes at a time throughout the day according to Mayo Clinic.
Doing housework is also exercise, lifting laundry, vacuuming, going up and down stairs, and just being on your feet and moving around can all add up to a lot of physical activity that provides the added bonus of providing a clean house while using a variety of muscle groups without even realizing it. Organizing the kitchen, garage and your closet may have been on your to do list, this may be the perfect time to get that done.
While at home you can still do simple exercises such as planks, walls sits, squats and a variety of other routines. Once again the internet can help you find a wide selection to follow along with rather than going to the gym. For instancing dancing is a great way to have fun and it can burn as many calories as swimming, depending on the intensity and how long you dance for.
For those looking to create an at home circuit workout the American Heart Association has recommendations on their website for a simple and effective circuit routine that can be done from home which included push ups, lunges, jumping jacks, and high knees.
While being home bound the CDC recommends the following to help look out for your mental health during COVID-19 social distancing:
- Without over saturating yourself with coverage on the virus stay informed
- Eat healthy foods as much as possible and remain physically active
- Take some time to meditate and take deep breaths
- Make time to relax and unwind to help any strong feelings fade away
- You don’t need to constantly look at coverage, make sure to take breaks from it
- Stay connected with friends and family to talk about what/how you are feeling and maintain a healthy relationship
- Try to stay in a positive mindset and maintain positive thinking
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This article is not intended to provide medical diagnosis, advice, treatment, or endorsement