There has been a drastic change in Shweta’s life in the past few days. The 31-year-old used to start her day with an hour of exercise, but that changed a week ago after the gym in her area shut down amid the novel coronavirus scare.
“Since I am a programmer and we don’t get any exercise, the only time I indulge in some physical activity is in the gym. Moving online was the only option available,” said the IT professional who started an online yoga class to ensure her physical health doesn’t get compromised.
The lockdown has made many rethink about how they can remain active, with meditation, breathing exercises, online training modules and altered diets showing them the way forward.
“It’s important to maintain a routine movement of the body, otherwise it may affect our immunity. The lockdown is important, but if we neglect our physical health, we may become susceptible to other diseases,” said Surakshit, a yoga trainer, adding that people can opt for an hour of yoga daily. “We don’t have to exercise at a stretch.
It can be done in two rounds, morning and evening,” he said.
Experts also pointed out the importance of making exercise a group activity. “Since everyone is at home, it will make sense for families to undertake some training exercise together,” said Francis, a fitness trainer.
It’s important not to take risks in this environment, he stressed. “I suggest that people go for low intensity workout sessions by keeping their age and medical history in mind. Light cardio exercises, including squats and pullups, are the easiest way to remain healthy,” he said.
While several gyms and yoga trainers have started offering online classes, unverified tutorials on YouTube, Instagram and other social media platforms have also become a viable option for some. While experts say they may not cause harm, they also warn against setting unrealistic expectations.
“People have a lot of time on their hands at the moment. We know people search for fitness videos and then try to replicate them. My only advice is to not get overambitious. Remember that the person performing those exercises on videos have trained for years,” said Ankit, another fitness trainer.
Dietitian Ishi Khosla pointed out that it was important to figure out a balanced diet. “Since our bodies are at rest, it’s important to remember that our diets can’t be the same as before. We need to cut down on the number of meals and maybe limit them to just two,” she said. Khosla added that the lockdown has also caused mental stress, which leads to heightened cravings. “When our movements get curtailed, our appetite falls but cravings increase.
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