May 27, 2020

Staying healthy and staying active

Now is a great time to review your exercise interests and goals, and this can include revising your routine with some new moves. Make a plan to combat low motivation!

For most of us, the pandemic and the changes it has brought have upended our routines. It’s tough to get the motivation to keep moving when it feels like the whole world has stopped. But it can be done! Exercise plays a huge role in our physical and mental well-being. What better time to start some new habits?

Before tackling a new routine, it’s important to know your activity interests and how much time you can commit to making a SMART (specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, and time-bound) exercise goal that you’ll stick to. Think about what you enjoy and what you can fit into your day, whether it’s yoga, HIIT, biking, running or walking.

  • If you’re working from home, a program like HIIT might be best for your busy schedule. This is high-intensity interval training that really works your cardiovascular system and gets you energized quickly.
  • If you have more time, try a mindful walk or yoga session, or consider learning a new exercise program. There are many online exercise programs that encourage and support at-home workout programs.

Many of us take exercise classes and go to the gym for the social contact. With gyms closed and classes cancelled, we can feel isolated from our normal activities. Online activities can support feelings of community. Using an app or joining a Zoom class can really boost your motivation and overall mindset.

The UCalgary community is staying on top of this exercise trend, and Active Living is no exception. They’ve posted a variety of videos on their site, featuring everything from bike basics from the Outdoor Centre and home workouts from personal trainers. You can also register to attend a total body strength circuit class on Mondays and Thursdays with one of their instructors!

Check out episode 2 of COVIDcast for more tips.

If you’re struggling with motivation, think about having someone hold you accountable to your new health habits. Maybe it’s a partner, parent or friend, or even an app. Find a way to keep yourself on track to reach your health goals.

Although you don’t need to have lots of equipment to keep active, it’s nice to dedicate a space in your home to your workout. Try to exercise in front of a window or in a safe outdoor space. Research has suggested that connecting with nature has added benefits when you’re getting fit.