We have been going through a time where there has been a significant shift in all our lives. Commuting to work, going to your favorite restaurant, partying with friends on the weekends, none of this is safe anymore. The COVID-19 pandemic has completely changed our lives, and now we are adjusting to the new normal. Why? Because the onus of making everything come back to what it was before is upon us, we need to break the chain to get through this situation together.  

As the world embraces this change, we have started to find ways to continue working from home, staying entertained, and healthy, especially. Our dining tables, home desks are now our work desks, the internet allows us to stay connected now more than ever, with our friends and family, and are experimenting with any and every kind of food item in our kitchen.  What probably is the newest addition to our lifestyle and is here to stay for the longest time is the face mask.

You should always wear a mask when you step out of your homes as a precautionary measure for maximum safety. Covering your mouth and nose can help contain the spread of COVID-19. It works as a barrier that helps prevent the movement of water droplets from traveling in the air from one person to another. Even when you maintain a 6 feet distance from others in a public setting, it is necessary to cover your face. It protects you and others from the risk of contracting the virus and other infections.

The pandemic has made us want to stay at home, wear a mask, and maintain social distancing when we are outside. It is necessary to stay healthy amidst it all. Changing lifestyles lead to a change in bodily functions too. While we are at home, we should ensure our body gets the right nutrients and also the right amount of exercise. A healthy diet consisting of fibers, vitamins, proteins, etc., can be highly beneficial to boost immunity. Along with that, you should keep your body fit by exercising regularly.  

It is essential to exercise for at least 20-30 minutes daily to maintain a healthy lifestyle. Just staying at home every day can get very monotonous when you are only doing your house chores and office work. Physical exercise can act as a change from your sedentary lifestyle and encourage the movement of your muscles and joints. It also helps you to lighten your mood positively. Running is one such exercise that can help you to maintain fitness. But given the current situation, running can be a task. If you go out for a run outdoors, you should ensure your residential area is not a hotspot. If your residential area comes under the containment zone, we recommend you to stay indoors.  

If your location is not in the containment zone and movement is allowed, you can go out for a quick run. Do not forget to wear a mask when you're heading out. You need to wear a mask that has an expiratory port so that you can breathe easily. As running can be an exercise where you can exert yourself quickly, it is recommended you take off the mask while you're running (if the routes are empty) or take breaks between your run and not exceed your run time for more than 15-20 minutes. You should wear a heart rate monitor so that you can ensure keeping a check on your cardiovascular functions and take a break as and when required.

Remember, running outdoors should not be taken as an activity for losing weight or enhancing your fitness. It should merely be a means to feel fresh and move your body so that you feel mentally and physically better. To lessen the time spent outside, you can do your warm-up exercise indoors. This way, you are already ready to go sprinting about on the roads without wasting any time!

If you wish to go out for a run daily, you can do it on alternate days, and for the days when you are not running outdoors, you can follow some home workout routines. Remember to research before you proceed to exercise. Know what your body wants, and consult a trainer if need be. It is necessary to wear the right exercise accessories as well. If you are a beginner, choose workouts that require minimal to no equipment. Home workouts that consist of spot jogging, spot running, high knees, burpees lunges, etc., can be beneficial to maintain cardiovascular fitness.

Running indoors can be equally fun and productive if done rightly. Even though there is the disadvantage of not having to run around scenic places, there is also an advantage of being able to run for a longer time as you will be exercising indoors. Running indoors can help you check off your fitness goals, you can increase your ability to run longer and at the same time, practice other exercises. Understand your physical limits. Do not stress your body too much. Listen to your body to understand when you get tired. Take enough rests and hydrate as and when required.

While running is a useful physical activity with multiple benefits, you should ensure that you are responsible for the safety of yourself and your family. Whenever you go outdoors for a run, choose a time when there is not a lot of foot traffic, avoid crowded places.  Ensure you are keeping at least 6 feet or a 2-meter distance from other pedestrians on the road. Do not forget to take breaks and hydrate. Be safe!

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