Obviously quarantine has changed all of our lives, and if you aren’t an essential worker, you probably find yourself spending most of your time at home. Gyms and studios are closed, and if you live in an apartment in the middle of a city (like me), getting around and staying active is probably quite a challenge.
As a yoga/Pilates/dance teacher and practitioner, my body is my tool. It’s a combination of liking physical activity with the need to stay active in order to be able to keep doing my job. Since going into lockdown I teach between 5-10 classes per week, and I take 1-2 classes per day. I am actually more active now than I had been in at least six months! So how do I do it?
- I have time! I have time and I am bored, and fitness has always been my go to when I have nothing better to do, or when I am feeling anxious. I don’t always feel like taking a class, but I always feel better after taking a class (if for no other reason, thanks to endorphins and all), so whenever I don’t feel like taking a class, I remind myself of that.
- I plan my week. I keep a little journal and before the beginning of every week I check which classes are available and create a timetable. Though it is subject to change, and I don’t always take exactly all the classes I write down, I do roughly follow my plan, and it helps me see what are my options for the week. It also helps me keep a routine, stick to a normal sleeping cycle and keep track of what day of the week it is.
- Find your community and your favorite teachers! So many fitness instructors are now giving classes online. This actually means that you can pretty much join in with any community you want, no matter where they are based physically. This is amazing for a person like me, who has lived in 3 different cities (continents, to be more accurate) in the past couple of years, as I get to take classes that I normally can’t take. When quarantine began I searched my favorite teachers and studios from all over the world and figured out who was teaching, I tried their class and I keep trying more every week (more and more studios and teacher keep joining this trend). Make sure you find a class you like and that works for you.
- Try different platforms. You might have tried Zoom and hated it, or Instagram live-streaming and hated it, but make sure to try all options. I combine the different platforms. I found I like taking Zoom classes for motivation, and it helps to know someone is watching, but sometimes taking a live-streamed class (maybe even not live) can give you the freedom to explore, to do things your own way and at your own pace, and it can actually feel nicer.
- Try different activities. As we are quite inactive it’s important to keep working on strength, flexibility and endurance (or cardio). While I normally hate cardio, I am doing it now. I used to walk all around the city, and in the past years I had been cycling a lot, but these aren’t really an option now, so I take 1-2 circuit/HIIT classes per week, and I also walk up and down the single step I have at home hundreds of times (intentionally), or jump/jog on the spot. It’s not very fun, but it’s actually not that bad either, and it always makes me feel quite accomplished once I’ve made it through. Find something that works for you.
- Don’t get discouraged! Even if you haven’t been active up until now, don’t worry and try not to judge yourself. Any day is a good day to start! We regain fitness quite quickly – if you haven’t been active for a month, it will take less time than a month to re-build your strength. Generally speaking, these are weird times, we all do what we can and we are all trying to adjust, so try being kind and empathetic towards yourself.
Would love to hear what you do for physical activity during your quarantine.