Staying Active During a Pandemic, Winter, and Holidays
With the weather changing, staying at home due to COVID-19, and the upcoming holidays it may be difficult to find the motivation to exercise and stay active.
Why Stay Active?
Exercise is one of the most powerful tools we have for staying physically and mentally healthy. The current recommendation for adults is that we get a minimum of 150 minutes of moderate exercise per week. So get creative and make a plan. Schedule your exercise, workout as a family, try something new, change it up, work more steps into your day.
Exercise boosts our immune system, eases stress and anxiety, can lower blood pressure, cholesterol, manage diabetes, and help keep those dreaded holiday pounds away.
Here’s to a Healthy 2021
Make your 2021 resolution to get and stay fit! Seek help if you need motivation to exercise and stay active. This winter and holiday season, give yourself the gift of exercise! Not sure where to start? Try these tips:
- Pick up a winter hobby. Ever think about snow shoeing or ice skating? Cross country skiing is something you can do without mountains.
- A brisk walk or a hike at your local park can be invigorating. Just beware of ice.
- Play outside with the kids. Sledding and making a snowman can be a good workout.
- Layer up. The Scandinavians say there is no bad weather, only bad clothes. The trick to winter is layers that are not tight and not cotton because cotton holds in moisture. Make sure to cover your skin with gloves and scarves, hydrate and pay attention to signs of frostbite (you’ll feel it in your fingers and toes first).
- Sign up for an online class. Zoom makes it possible to try yoga, Pilates and other group-style classes from the comfort of home. Or go to your local library and pick up an exercise DVD.
- Make a splash. Check out your local indoor pool for a class or lap swimming.
- Find an indoor place, such as a mall, to walk or climb stairs.
- Invest in home exercise equipment such as a treadmill or exercise bike. For a low-cost option, look into resistance band exercises.
- Break up couch time by doing calisthenics during commercials or breaks. Stomach crunches, jumping jacks and other exercises can be done from the comfort of your living room.
- Have a dance party at home. Spin your favorite tunes and dance like no one’s looking!
Martha “Marti” Monnig, RN, BSN, ACSM, ETT is a supervisor for cardiac rehabilitation at CHI Health Creighton University Medical Center – Bergan Mercy.