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7 ways to stay active and fit during a winter lockdown

by Tina Sendin December 01, 2020

7 ways to stay active and fit during a winter lockdown

Photo by GMB Fitness on Unsplash

 

It’s wintertime. You’re stuck at home. Not (only) because you hate being in snow, you also hate the prospect of bringing COVID-19 into your home. So you’re doing the right thing and trying to stay at home as much as you can.

Props to you!

 

 

But you want to keep staying active, albeit being indoors. How can this be possible?

Most gyms are closed and group workouts suspended. Your usual routine that involves walking, cycling, and catching public transportation are momentarily put on hold. Add to the mix work-from-home arrangements, remote learning and having everyone in the family at home. Is there any way to incorporate a little more movements into your everyday life?

Fortunately, it is possible to stay active and fit despite the current circumstances.

Here are some ways you can stay on top of your workout regimen, safe and warm in your home.

 

Start small and break down your workout

According to James Clear in his book “Atomic Habits,” start with an incredibly small habit. James says: [1]

Solve this problem by picking a new habit that is easy enough that you don't need motivation to do it. Rather than starting with 50 pushups per day, start with 5 pushups per day. Rather than trying to meditate for 10 minutes per day, start by meditating for one minute per day. Make it easy enough that you can get it done without motivation.

Applied to your lockdown workout lifestyle, set goals that you can easily smash. Maybe start with 10-minute daily stretching exercises, gradually increasing the duration to 15 and eventually 30 minutes. Perhaps start with activities you enjoy doing like dancing or yoga. If you struggle with long and arduous workouts, try breaking them down into 15 minutes in the morning, 15 minutes at lunchtime and/or 15 minutes at night. Before you know it, you’ll be doing an hour of yoga and find yourself enjoying the entire session. You’ll be glad you started.

To quote zen habit master Leo Babauta, “make it so easy you can’t say no.”

 

Consider household chores

Want to kill two birds with one stone? Then get out of the couch and start doing active household cleaning. While you’re at it, pull out your favorite Spotify playlist and blast some feel good music around the house. 

Perhaps it’s about time to repot your indoor plants.

Dust gathering on top of your cupboard or under your furniture? It’s time to bring out the vacuum and do a thorough clean of the carpet.

Clean your windows and those dusty blinds.

Believe it or not, cleaning the whole house can be equivalent to running miles!

 

Set up a gym at home

The silver lining to this whole lockdown thing is finally getting the chance to set up your own gym at home. Maybe part of item #2 (house cleaning) is decluttering your garage and turning it into your workout space.

You don’t even need a massive space. Even that tiny nook in your bedroom or living room can turn into a makeshift gym, thanks to a couple of dumbbells and those pull-up bars you can easily buy from Ebay. A lot of people attending yoga on Zoom are setting up their mats in the lounge room or along the hallway. There are many ways to establish a workout space (and eventually a routine) at home. You just need to get all your equipment and accessories in one place to help with organizing them and psyching yourself up in the process.

If you have a tiny space, don’t fret! Sometimes, you do not need any equipment at all. You can try bodyweight exercises like burpees, air squats and push-ups. Search Google for an appropriate rep regime for you and take advantage of your own bodyweight in the absence of any equipment and workout accessories!

 

Take advantage of (free) online workouts, apps and videos on YouTube

Once you’ve got your gym or workout nook ready to go, set up your computer and other devices for those live or recorded sessions. Pro tip: if you’re working from home and also have your own personal devices, set up these multiple screens to provide your instructor with various angles. Especially for live online classes, some yoga or Pilates instructors provide tips and corrections for students’ poses.

Most gyms and yoga classes have moved online now. Some are offering free classes while others are providing live sessions at discounted prices. You can also go to the ever-reliable YouTube for free at-your-own-pace workout videos. There are many workout apps available for either Apple or Android devices.

 

To aid your workout and give you an extra boost, consider some hydration energy support.

 

Run around your backyard (or around the block if possible)

If you have a backyard, why not walk around and achieve a certain number of steps a day. And if it’s allowed in your city, squeeze in a walk around the block. Just make sure you are observing social distancing and regularly sanitizing your hands.

Have a pet? Walk your dog with you. Or play with them in the backyard and around the house. You’ll be burning calories while having fun.  

 

Shift positions regularly

Sometimes, physical activity can be as simple as changing positions every 20 minutes or so. If you’re working remotely, do the Pomodoro and take a break every 40 minutes of deep work. Stand up and walk around the house. Prepare snacks or cook a meal in between tasks. Use a standing desk (or request one from work) so you can shift from sitting and standing every now and then.

 

Block a specific time for physical activity every day

Set your morning walk around the block before clocking in. Sign up for regular HIIT or yoga sessions twice or thrice (or more) a week, after work. Squeeze in an online session during your lunch break (one of the benefits of working from home.) The key to incorporating a healthy habit into your lifestyle is to block a specific time and constantly committing to this schedule.

 

Conclusion

Quarantine and staying at home don’t have to mean a sedentary lifestyle. Treat this extraordinary, unprecedented moment as the perfect opportunity to use spare time at home developing an active and fit lifestyle. There’s no better time than now to maintain such healthy habits. In such a stressful time, all the happy hormones from working out (endorphins) will help in combatting anxiety and life stressors, all while boosting the immune system and reducing risks of chronic diseases.

As you do your workouts, help yourself with some electrolyte salts that can help with energy boost, recovery and endurance. Try VALI Electrolyte Salts for hydration energy support.

 

 

Sources

[1] https://jamesclear.com/habit-guide 




Tina Sendin
Tina Sendin

Author




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