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Health

How to Make Exercising Fun (During a Pandemic)

With gyms and fitness centers being closed due to the pandemic, now is the best time to get creative with your exercise routine. This past year, I discovered a bunch of fun, creative ways to exercise regularly without needing to go to the gym. So, here are some of my favorites!

Kayaking 

It may be a little too chilly out right now for this one, but once it starts warming up, I highly recommend you go out and kayak! At home, I was fortunate enough to have a lake all but in my backyard, so over the summer, I took up kayaking. Not only was it a great way to be out in nature, but it is an amazing workout, too. Kayaking is a great aerobic exercise since it gets your heart rate up, but it also can help you tone your arms and abs. All around, it is a nice way to stay active and enjoy the outdoors. 

Roller Skating 

Recently I was inspired by a series of Instagram reels to try out rollerskating, and is it challenging! If you would like to improve your balance, feel the wind in your hair, and do some cool skating tricks, then I highly recommend you give rollerskating a chance. Also, roller skating has similar benefits as jogging since it burns a lot of calories and fat and tones your legs. Be warned, however, it is a lot trickier than it seems. You will feel the burn even if you aren’t a pro skater. 

Jump Rope 

I used to jump rope all the time in elementary school, but now as an adult, I completely forgot how intense it is. Lately, I jump rope on my balcony every so often if I need a quick energizer or when I want to do cardio but don’t feel like running. It is an ideal form of exercise because all you need is some open space and a rope! Jump roping is a very intense form of cardio that tones your entire body. You do not need to do it for very long before getting exhausted, though. There is a reason pro boxers jump rope during training! 

Yoga 

If you have not tried it already, yoga can be an incredible way to get exercise and destress. There are so many different types of yoga that all have unique kinds of movements and intensities, so you will never run out of new things to try. You can practice anything from breathwork and deep stretching to energetic movements and chants. While yoga is not categorized as aerobic activity, except for some forms like power yoga, it’s still good strength training since it takes a lot of strength to hold your body in certain poses. 

Hula-Hooping 

Like jump rope, Hula-Hooping is something I even thought of since elementary school, but I can now recognize it as an amazing form of exercise. Hula-Hooping is a great way to strengthen your core, improve posture, and burn calories. It can give you similar results as other aerobic exercises like belly dancing, salsa, and swing dancing. It is a great choice if you are looking for something simple.

 

Exercising without access to gyms or even proper gym equipment can feel extremely limiting. Even after you think outside the box and find ways to be active it can still be hard to stay motivated. So here are some tricks that help me find the inspiration to work out even when I would rather do anything else: 

  • Wear workout clothes during the day. We are all at home anyway, so you do not have to dress up. Personally, I notice I am way more committed to working out when I am already in workout clothes since it is one less task to do. Also, if you have a limited amount of workout clothes then there is even more pressure to workout so you do not “waste” the outfit. 

  • Make a list of reasons why working out is good for you and why you should do it. This strategy is a good way of reminding yourself that working out is all about taking care of yourself. 

  • Add it to your to-do list and set a reminder on your phone for extra accountability. 

  • If you live with other people, see if they can join you that way you can hold each other accountable, or you could set up workout sessions via Zoom or FaceTime with your friends. 

Juliana Elg

West Chester '21

Hi, I'm Juliana Elg! I'm a junior Psychology student with a minor in Global Studies and I'm passionate about writing, telling stories, and helping others. When I'm not studying you can find me going on nature walks and painting.
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