According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 78 percent of people hospitalized for Covid-19 were either overweight or obese. The same report notes that obesity is a recognized risk factor for severe Covid-19, possibly due to chronic inflammation that disrupts the body’s immune response and affects lung function.
These findings support the need for prevention strategies that include continuous vaccination, but also the role diet and fitness play in our health. Based on these findings, it is possible that more and more health professionals are prescribing a healthy diet and exercise as a means of improving health and well-being, concurrently with medication and other interventions.
Hopefully, once our communities are better able to cope with Covid-19, more people will be physically active. Here are some activities that I think more people will take part in:
Walking / jogging / running. One of the most convenient activities is going for a walk. Go into areas where you can do these activities with adequate social distancing. While there are those who prefer to do this on a treadmill, these outdoor activities are also good for our mental health. I would suggest looking for good shoes.
Swim. This requires more preparation as you need to have access to a body of water, but swimming is a good cardiovascular exercise that will help increase lung and heart capacity and strengthen muscles.
Strength training. Weight training isn’t limited to barbells, kettlebells, and fitness equipment. Bodyweight training can be a great way to develop strength for some people. More and more people are also investing in a home gym. Strength training has been found to improve our functional skills as we age, so one more reason to take part. To avoid potential injury, be sure to use proper programming or hire a professional to create a program and monitor your progress.
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CrossFit. For people who enjoy being part of a community and exercising at a certain level of intensity, CrossFit can be a viable fitness option. Make sure you find a CrossFit facility that values good technique, proper progress, and good coaching. This type of exercise is known for overuse injuries. Just like weight training, programming is paramount.
Golf. For those who love the outdoors and have a sense of community and competition, golf is also a great way to get out in the sun.
To dance. This is a good activity to help improve your mood. You can do this from the comfort of your living room. Just play some music and dance your heart away. Husbands get ready!
Yoga / Pilates. There are many online yoga and pilates classes from local and international teachers. These exercises are suitable for those who prefer a gentler exercise routine.
When attending class, it is important to choose your instructors wisely. It is beneficial to be tutored by someone who has a good understanding of anatomy and physiology.
Neglecting physical activity exposes us to the risks of lifestyle diseases and poor health. Too much exercise and / or too little recovery also risk overload injuries to our joints, ligaments and tendons. I read this quote from one of the coaches I follow on social media and it sums up the concept in an elegant way: “You only get one body. And it has to last a lifetime. Train accordingly. “