Whether you call it a lockdown, a quarantine or put a hashtag in front of Stay Home, New Yorkers and others are facing a new chapter in the new normal: isolation.
Concerns over coronavirus resulted in drastic actions like shuttering restaurants, casinos and gyms in hopes of staving off the spread of the virus. People are being told to stay home. But for a society accustomed to freedom of mobility, it’s taking some getting used to — and that’s for the people who are listening to authorities.
Xu Hong is a reporter based in Shanghai who weathered the COVID-19 siege in China. She has been following Governor Andrew Cuomo's press conferences. "The lockdown is important and is essential, I think. That's what we did the whole month of February. We didn't work. We had no economic activities and people didn't go out. And I think that's the best way to contain the virus."
"There's never any wasted opportunity to either maintain or to establish a regimen or routine or ways to really keep physically fit and healthy, even in the midst of the COVID crisis," says Don Applyrs, an Albany-based fitness educator, personal trainer and coach. He says having your daily routine interrupted can be a shock to the system, especially when that routine involves workouts at the gym.
"We all have the best equipment made to man, and that's our bodies. And we can certainly utilize our bodies to accomplish fitness goals. So I'm one who's certainly a strong advocate for calesthenic type exercises. These are natural exercises that can be done at home. whether someone is physically able to, you know, do pushups or situps or leg raisers or jumping jacks, or even jump rope within their home. You know, many go to gym for cardiovascular activities, whether it's the treadmill or biking, things of that nature. But you know, with the right combination of exercises and cardiovascular exercises like jumping rope or jumping jacks, or anything is really going to increase the heart rate, you can certainly get the same effect if not a greater effect in the traditional machine."
Applyrs says if you are able to get outdoors and walk, jog or run as the weather warms, all the better, but make sure you get the OK from your doctor first, then set a goal, and start out small. And when the day comes that the gym re-opens... "Be careful to not assume that you're at the same level or strength or that you were, perhaps, you know, over the course of this interruption to your routine. Certainly, again, start off slow and kind of ease things back in if it's certainly significantly different than what you've been doing and in the interruption with the COVID-19."
Hong says Coronavirus peaked in China in January. She adds things are beginning to return to normal in Shanghai, and encourages New Yorkers to "be patient, you'll get through this." "Small businesses are reopened again and people are starting to go out. We say that WuHan provides hope for the rest of the world, that even the most severe situation can be turned around."
Here are a few links to Don Applyrs' workouts: