Life on the inside: Tips for keeping fit in the coronavirus lockdown
BEING trapped in the house doesn't have to mean being stuck on the sofa, and with the NHS recommending everyone does at least 150 minutes of exercise per week, it is best to keep moving. Here's how to stay fit and healthy while avoiding Covid-19.
1: Running or cycling (alone): People are still allowed out to exercise, but only once a day and only alone or with members of your own household – so going for a run, cycle or a walk is fine. And with air pollution levels plummeting due to the lockdown, it might be more pleasant than you would think.
2: Yoga: There are thousands of free websites offering video tutorials, so it is a case of shopping around and seeing which you get on best with. Most websites have dozens of videos ranging from beginner to advanced, as well as routines tailored to plus sizes and to those with mobility issues.
3: Skipping: It might conjure up memories of playground rhymes, or even mental images of Rocky Balboa but skipping is simple and gets the heart rate up in no time.
Mind you, with shops shut you may need to rely on a younger member of the household for a skipping rope.
4: Stairs: If you are short on gym equipment then you can always make use of a set of stairs, should you have them. There are various exercises you can try including stair pushups, reverse lunges and tricep dips – even just walking up and down them a few times will at least get you moving.
5: Sofa: The call of the sofa might be strong – but see if you can resist Netflix for 20 minutes and try a quick workout instead. It might sound simple but even sitting down and standing up again 10 times in a row will work out your thighs. Search "sofa workout" online for hundreds of videos promising to get you fit from the comfort of your living room.
6: Wellness gurus: Endlessly chipper wellness gurus might not be everyone's cup of tea, but perhaps a dose of their endorphin supply is what is needed to get you through the Covid-19 crisis. Joe Wicks, known as The Body Coach, has made it his mission to keep parents sane by offering daily online PE lessons to children during the lockdown. He streams live at 9am, weekdays.
7: Gardening: If you are lucky enough to have a garden, get out in it. In fact, avid gardeners probably won't notice the lockdown at all. Now could be the time to plant an insect garden – purple flowers attract butterflies – while pots of herbs and easy-to-grow seeds are available in most of the major supermarkets.
8: Mediation: Aimed at slowing the heart rate rather than raising it, meditation might just keep you sane and save your relationships after a month cooped up with your nearest and dearest. There are dozens of apps promising to help you breathe your way to peace of mind, including Calm, Headspace and Insight Timer.