More time spent at home thanks to the COVID-19 coronavirus means you have more time to find new ways to exercise.
“Remember that time in 2020 when we all ran out of toilet paper,” joked the man who stood behind me in line at Walmart. We were lucky to arrive in time to buy our rationed package of toilet paper. They were already out of disinfectant wipes, but he had enough in his cart to spare one for me.
These are unprecedented times and many of us are worried. Some are concerned for their health or the health of friends and family. Others face financial issues and those who are fortunate enough to be working have to find time to help their children with schoolwork at home. I feel for the high school seniors who will not get to experience their prom, for the nurse who has to find childcare for her little one, for the elderly people who may not be able to get the groceries they need, for those that live alone and miss social interaction and, of course, for those affected by the COVID-19 coronavirus. It can be stressful and even depressing, but it is important to remain positive, find ways to connect, keep busy and, most of all, support each other because we are all in this together.
We have no control over what is going on in the world today, but we can control how we deal with it. Besides the obvious frequent hand washing, social distancing, etc., there are other ways to stay well during this pandemic.
If you must be homebound, make a list of things you have always wanted to do but hadn’t had the time to start. They could be home projects or something fun like gardening, painting landscapes, crocheting or teaching yourself another language. Use this time to try new recipes, read a book, check in with your neighbors and bond with family.
Gyms are closed, but do not fret! Many workouts do not require any equipment. You can find them online or connect with a group exercise instructor or trainer offering virtual classes. For those that can, get outdoors to stay active and go for a walk, run or bike ride. If you are not used to running solo, you can connect with other runners using an app like Runkeeper to hold each other accountable or join a Fitbit challenge.
It always feels good to help others. Do you have a neighbor with a health condition who might need groceries or paper goods? Support local businesses that are open for takeout. FaceTime or start a group chat to keep in touch with friends, and be kind to the teachers navigating through this new way of teaching.
The Tampa Metropolitan Area YMCA is trying to do everything it can to help people stay connected, healthy and well. Though our facilities must remain closed to members, our centers are offering school aged relief care to help support healthcare workers, emergency responders and other essential workers. You can also find many ideas to keep you busy at tampaymca.org/tampa-y-member-resources. This includes a variety of free workout videos you can do at home with little to no equipment like Barre, Yoga, HIIT, kid-friendly workouts and workouts for active older adults. There is also free access to LesMills on demand for YMCA members and links to free at home entertainment.
It’s our way to help you stay active, healthy and connected in your own home, and on your own time.
These are challenging and confusing times so let’s try to do whatever we can to lessen the burden on each other and our community as a whole. Stay strong and healthy!
Angela Fulgieri is a Program Director for the Tampa Metropolitan YMCA. Write her at email@example.com.