People are commanded to “Lockdown” and they’re only permitted to leave their homes for the essentials: fast food, liquor and any items to be purchased at Home Depot or Target. Yet, parks, gyms, churches, restaurants, sporting venues, beaches and many other areas where physical activity and spirituality are promoted were closed. Far too many people fell into the rut of ordering fast food, drinking and sitting on the couch to watch Netflix...The Net Result, or should I say “Netflix Result” was the addition of unwanted weight and the adoption of habits steeped in poor eating, alcohol overconsumption and inactivity. Just when we thought that this situation would be over...the ugly head of another COVID19 Lockdown is on the horizon.
This is dangerous on many levels. Why?
According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC). “The types of health conditions and contributing causes mentioned in conjunction with deaths involving coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). For 6% of the deaths, COVID-19 was the only cause mentioned. For deaths with conditions or causes in addition to COVID-19, on average, there were 2.6 additional conditions or causes per death” (Bondy, 2020).
Many of these comorbidities include obesity, high blood pressure, Type 2 Diabetes, Coronary Heart Disease (CHD), Anxiety, Depression and certain cancers (United Health Foundation, 2019). Sedentary living is responsible for the death of over 300,000 Americans yearly and has surpassed smoking as the number one preventable cause of death and has more than double the attributed death toll of cancer.
OK great. We know all of these horrible things...What can be done?
The answer is simple, but not easy. Simple in the “what” that needs to be done, difficult is the discipline that is required to create and maintain the good habits. Be prepared for the 90 Days of Suck! I’m not going to candy coat this (put down that chocolate bar!), it takes 90 days to form a habit and make it stick so that it becomes more routine.
Here’s the Hit List:
- Caloric Intake: Take in less calories than you expend.
- Take Vitamin D, especially if you live in the North.
- Workout Daily: Recommended 30 to 60 minutes of moderate to intense training five days a week.
- Use “Exercise Snacks”. Many people claim that “time” is their main aversion to an exercise routine. So, do 10 to 15 minutes stints a few times per day. If you are at home, put 2 to 4 movements and do them throughout the day. Get up every hour or so and exercise. If you report to an office, wake up and do 10-15 minutes in the morning, go for a walk at lunch time and when you get home, do another round or two. You will meet your minutes.
- Workout the first thing in the morning. Every day do Squats, Push-ups, Sit-ups, Bridges and work in some stretching as soon as you get up. This gets the blood flowing and increases your energy level.
- If you are able to go to the gym, don’t worry, they are some of the safest places to go. This is addressed further down in the blog.
- Find a means to train virtually. There are videos that you stream through Collage Video as well as other live one on one and group training through UBQFIT. Many of the workouts on these sites require minimal to zero equipment.
- Remove the “Dread Factor” and do exercise that you like and will stick with.
- Choose a variety of methods; cardiovascular, strength circuits, flexibility/mobility, dance or martial arts based workouts. Keep it interesting and stimulating.
- Your strength workout should be based on the Seven Basic Movement Patterns: Lower Body Push, Lower Body Pull, Upper Body Push, Upper Body Pull, Single Leg Work, Bridges and Transverse Plane. Examples: Lower Body Push: Squats, Lower Body Pull: Deadlifts and Kettlebells Swings, Upper Body Push: Push-ups or Press, Upper Body Pull: Pull-ups or Rows, Single Leg Work: Single Leg Deadlifts, Single Leg Bridges, Bridges: and Transverse: Kettlebell Snatch or Single Kettlebell Cleans. Loaded Carries, such as Farmer’s Walks are also beneficial to incorporate.
Training, like anything else, requires consistency to attain results. Pick an instructor(s) and training methods that will motivate you and prompt you to continue. Dedicate some time, money and effort to your health - you are worth it! Have fun and embrace the challenge - you will reap the rewards! Trainers, instructors and health and wellness experts are here to help guide you on your journey, whether in person or virtually. This is what we do.
Good luck on your quest!
Strength and Honor,
United Health Foundation (2019). America’s Health Rankings. Explore Physical Inactivity in the United States | 2019 Annual Report | AHR (americashealthrankings.org)
Bondy, Dave. (Sept. 1, 2020). CDC: 94% of Covid-19 deaths had underlying medical conditions. CDC: 94% of Covid-19 deaths had underlying medical conditions (msn.com)
Phil Ross, AKA Master Phil and The Kettlebell King is a Master Kettlebell Instructor, College Professor in Wellness and Exercise, holder of a Masters Degree in Sports and Health Sciences, Author, 9th Degree Black Belt, and Master Bladewielder & Bodyweight Specialist. Master Phil has also launched a certification course: BodyBell Method, which is recognized by the highly regarded ACE (American Council of Exercise). Read a more in-depth description of Master Phil’s qualifications and accomplishments here. Have a question for Master Phil? Click here and send it in! View Phil's collection of Fitness DVD's here.