While the ongoing lockdown officially came to a close in Texas on 1st May, Gov. Greg Abbott recently encouraged residents to stay at home in light of the recent surge in COVID-19 cases. As the pandemic continues to abate and intensify sporadically, people are, for the most part, practicing social distancing and avoiding leaving their homes unnecessarily.
If you’ve been struggling to stay active during the lockdown, you’re not alone. The large majority of residents across Texas have been finding it hard to maintain an active lifestyle and are falling back on sedentary habits.
Spending more time indoors and unsanitary conditions in many fitness gyms can limit workout routines and reduce the motivation to stretch, exercise, or simply move around. Fortunately, there are several measures you can take to make up for your lack of activity.
1. Find a Spacious and Uplifting Space in Your Home
While heading to the gym may not be possible or preferable, you can still find ways to sneak in a quick workout. Space is integral here; if you attempt to work out in a cramped section of your living room, you’ll struggle to move freely.
We suggest finding a spacious and uplifting space in your home that not only helps you stretch and exercise properly, but also has an energizing effect on your mind. Follow a custom workout plan if you have neck pain, back pain, lower back pain, shoulder pain, hip pain, or joint pain.
In addition, create a daily schedule to stay on track. If consistency becomes an issue, find a workout partner (a family member or friend who’s social distancing with you) to regain motivation and make things more fun and you can hold each other accountable.
2. Take Periodic Work Breaks
If you’re working from home, take periodic work breaks to keep up your mobility. Prolonged sitting can cause neck and back pain, tighten your hip flexors, and weaken your posture.
Instead, stretch and move around every 30–40 minutes to stay mobile and flexible and keep pain at bay.
3. Take On More Household Chores
Increasing the frequency and intensity of your household chores is a great way to stay active during the lockdown. Plus, it can make your spouse very happy.
Make simple switches to stay active. For instance, you could vacuum your home yourself instead of using the Roomba or wash the dishes instead of resorting to the dishwasher.
Don’t take on more than you can handle. The additional stress of overloading yourself with extra chores almost defeats the purpose. Switching from mechanized solutions to manual chores a few times a week is a great way to get started. You’ll manage to stay more active and feel energized throughout the day.
4. Go Out for a Run!
It’s important to note that you should only wear a mask when standing or walking. Avoid wearing a mask or any sort of protective covering when running so that you can breathe.
Here are some more tips to help you run safely amid the ongoing pandemic.
5. Consult a Physical Therapist
If you’ve been experiencing persistent body aches or localized pain, consult a physical therapist. It’s very likely that a prolonged lack of or reduction in exercise has taken a toll on your musculoskeletal system. With a timely diagnosis and treatment, you can correct these issues and regain optimal mobility, flexibility, and comfort.
Our physical therapists at Houston Physicians’ Hospital have extensive experience in treating patients of all ages in Webster, South Houston, Clear Lake, Galveston, and League City. You can also consult our Joints Solutions Center or Spine Solutions Center to find a doctor and make an appointment to get individualized diagnosis and treatment plans.