With all that’s going on, I’ve had to revisit how and where I’m able to stay on track with my fitness and wellness goals. Our family created a chart a few weeks ago with progressively longer hikes/runs that we have to do each week and that is working well for all of us. We put a little sticker each time we complete a distance for extra motivation.
In addition to the chart, I’ve listed 10 ideas that we’re trying. Plus, other than virtual races, they’re all free!
- Try Spark+ Challenges. With both short- and long-term challenges, Spark+ is a program that has variety, fun and fitness all built right in. While there is a paid version, you don’t have to be a member to see and do the challenges.
- Go for a run/walk. “Unless you are very sick or under a quarantine that requires you to stay indoors, running (or walking) outside is one of the few activities experts agree remains pretty safe.” Link
- Try meditation. I’m pretty new to this one, so I found this article helpful.
- Build muscle. Unless you have access to weights, you might feel a little limited. But there’s a lot of good that can be done by pushups, squats, lunges, crunches, and back extensions. If you have access to a suspension trainer (like TRX), that can give you a lot of other variety too. To start, aim for 3 sets of about 10 reps each (to failure (find a resistance where you can’t do any more with good form at about 10 reps)).
- Stick to a routine. In these abnormal times, a sense of normalcy goes a long way. Here’s a good article about routine.
- Hit up nature. Spending time in nature is very cleansing and (depending on how dense population is where you live) can easily help us keep our distance from others.
- Avoid social media for a bit.
- Avoid the news for a bit.
- Do something vigorous to manage stress/blow off steam. Whether it’s doing any of the above or doing something new, I find it quite useful to do something physically demanding.
- And of course: Try one of our virtual races. In particular I am drawn to the “Overcome” race. It’s honoring the 50th anniversary of Apollo 13. When I get discouraged, I think about how dire it must have felt for the crew & those back on Earth – but they figured it out and pulled together. I think we can do a similar thing now.
Certainly these aren’t the only ways to get/stay on track right now, but hopefully there are some good reminders to help you each day. Lastly, I live at about 6000’, so Spring is just barely springing. When I look at the daffodils that we planted last fall just starting to poke up, I am reminded that good things are just around the corner and whatever we can do to get/stay on track right now will help us push through whatever challenges that lie ahead.
Virtual Running Club/Spark+ COO