WORKING OUT IN THE TIMES OF LOCKDOWN

It’s been over a year now, that we have stepped out of our homes normally, have had a hearty game of squash, badminton, tennis or cricket with our buddies or had a nice long run on the go or a gym session or a biking, hiking trail to get that refreshing feeling after doing a heavy workout and profusely sweating out. Truly, working out for about an hour in a day is a welcome and heathy change from mundane routine work and life. Though the main aim of exercise is physical fitness, the generation-z has also found ways to link it to enthralling activities which are physically strenuous as well as exercise-oriented and they rev up our mood too.

Now that COVID-19 pandemic sets a raging second wave across the country, we are locked up in our homes and our workout activities are restricted to the four walls of the house too. The lockdown measures like pulling the shutters of offices, malls, shops public places and fitness centres have taken a toll on many aspects of people’s lives including daily fitness activities of fitness freaks and this break in routine has led to many psychological issues and serious fitness and health concerns. Over a long period of time, these constraints have posed a challenge to the continuity of physical activities as well as activities for social interaction, as people grapple with the fear of contracting the deadly disease. The pandemic has made it quite difficult for people to maintain the tempo of their physical activities. However with time, people have found out ways and means to continue their fitness spree during these difficult times by doing ‘at-home’ exercises, challenging friends to complete a task, face-timing over good cardio sessions and putting up those fat-burning workouts on social media to motivate others to follow a daily fitness routine at their homes. People are coming up with innovative methods to keep up the gusto of the weary and bored ones who like outdoor sessions to modify their exercises to suit an indoor environment. Technology has been a great helping tool during the time of lockdown, bridging the 6-feet physical gap and the wide, tense social gap the pandemic has wrought upon us. We can easily connect with fitness trainers from all over the world and follow their effective and safe exercises and monitor our activities through fitness trackers and smart apps.  We can follow live or recorded workout videos for intensive workout sessions and get expert guidance through fitness and lifestyle coaches online. Experts across the globe have suggested to practice yoga and breathing exercises as substitutes to daily outdoor exercise. Staying updated on the current fitness trends in town through social media is currently a good way of productive social involvement and a great stress-buster too. For people who are used to listening sounds in their workout area, simulated environment and playing music while exercising may be a great way of pumping up the body and providing a distraction from the home-setting. Various researchers have suggested that regular physical activity with necessary precautions might significantly reduce the risk of respiratory illnesses, one of the major causes of COVID-19 deaths. Exercise has a positive effect on our mental health and emotional well-being too.

The attitude of people regarding the situation might still be on the frowny side of the happiness scale, but their self-awareness and perception towards bringing about lifestyle and routine changes has definitely shifted on the positive side. People have accepted the situation and have taken an initiative to step out of it by setting personal and squad goals and are trying to maintain good physical and mental fitness in a constructive manner. They have shifted focus from gym and heavy workout equipment to simple substitutes available at home. The energy of this positive side of coping up with the pandemic is great, and we do wish it spreads faster and with greater intensity than the coronavirus!

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