There are plenty of hilarious memes out there about overeating and streaming hours of television and TikTok during the quarantine, and while it’s okay to indulge in a homemade chocolate chip cookie or a couple episodes of the newest Netflix release, taking care of our physical and mental health is one of the best things we can do for ourselves right now.
Shelly Fritz, the owner of Reality Fitness, says there are four important steps to maintaining physical health: eat well, exercise often, drink plenty of water, and get a good night of sleep.
“If a person is new to exercise, I would encourage them to be creative in [their efforts] to become and stay more active,” Shelly says. According to Shelly, there are a few easy steps Sandites can take to tone their muscles and boost their metabolism: do calf raises while you brush your teeth, do squats while you wait for your lunch to finish cooking, take the stairs instead of the elevator, and park at the far end of the grocery store parking lot to get extra steps in.
Shelly recommends taking jogs and walks outside, plus she offers a helpful routine to add movement throughout your day:
1. Start the morning with a five minute lower ab workout
2. In the afternoon, do some squat jumps (outdoors, if possible!)
3. Before bed, see how many push-ups you can do
“Physical health is extremely important, as your physical health has a direct affect on your mental health,” Sherry said.
Local yoga instructor Sonia Marshall says one of the best ways to maintain your mental health is through guided meditation. “Try an app like Headspace, which provides an opportunity for self-reflection,” says Sonia. “With meditation, you can live in the present moment instead of worrying about the future.”
For beginners, Sonia recommends making exercise fun and making it a priority. Sonia recommends taking a playful approach, even incorporating silly dance moves or a plank challenge with a friend. “If it’s fun,” Sonia says, “you’ll do it again.”
Both Shelly and Sonia recommend searching for exercise and yoga programs online. Many gyms and studios are offering live classes with qualified instructors on Facebook and Instagram. Some are free, some are donation-based, and some charge a small fee to participate.
“Hang in there,” Shelly says. “The key is to be creative and keep moving!”