Working from home or being stuck in self-isolation presents a serious challenge to your health and well-being, so at Precision Physio, we’ve laid out a guide to your body in quarantine.
Whilst it is a necessary precaution to be taking in these times to stop the threat of COVID-19, it is important to realise the negative consequences being stuck at home can have on your body, and how staying physically active – however you do that – is key.
Staying at home for prolonged periods of time can pose a significant challenge for remaining physically active. Sedentary behaviour and low levels of physical activity can have negative effects on the health, well-being and quality of life of individuals.
A study in the Journal of Applied Physiology suggests that just two weeks of inactivity can begin to negate gains to your heart and muscle mass. Another study found that obese adults who worked out for four months and then took a month off lost most of the improvements to their aerobic capacity, insulin sensitivity, and cholesterol.
Increases in fat percentage, weight gain and muscle atrophy significantly increase the risk of injury to the body as it struggles to support itself. The world health organisation suggests 150 minutes of moderate-intensity or 75 minutes of vigorous-intensity physical activity per week, or a combination of both. These recommendations can still be achieved even at home, with no special equipment and with limited space.
Basic Exercises at Home
- Take short active breaks – break up your day with 15-20 minute breaks of exercise like squats, jumping jacks, push ups – be creative.
- Stairs – stairs are a cardiovascular dream for a stay-at-home situation. Using the stairs as a way to break up working hours or doing a workout on the stairs is a great way to easily get your heart rate up
- Get the family involved – putting some music on and dancing with the kids or playing a game of tag in the house are ways to break the monotony and up your step count
- Joining an online class – Precision Physio is putting on online classes and 1 on 1 online sessions to help you stay active without endangering yourself. To sign up for an online consultation or online email us here
As well as having benefits for your physical health, staying active can also do wonders for your mental state. Whether you’re confined to a room because you’ve been exposed to the virus or simply working from home because your office now requires it, this reduction in physical activity can affect your mind. That may manifest as sadness, irritation, frustration, anger, and other uncomfortable emotions.
Exercise has been shown to reduce anxiety and depression, with one study proposing that the increase in blood circulation feeds the limbic system and hippocampus, the body’s control centres for motivation, mood and memory formation. Other studies propose that increased physical activity promotes self-efficacy, distraction and social interaction – all proven boosters for self-esteem and motivation.
Having a tailored exercise program or routine based on what you have around the house can allow you to get into more of a routine, which makes things easier when feeling sluggish or unmotivated. To get a program tailored to you, simply book a consultation with one of our exercise physiologists here
Speaking of social interaction, humans were programmed to seek out partnerships and relationships in order to survive. “If we think about loneliness as this adaptive response kind of like hunger and thirst, it’s this unpleasant state that motivates us to seek out social connections just like hunger motivates us to seek out food,” said lead study author Julianne Holt-Lunstad, a professor of psychology and neuroscience at Brigham Young University.
Obviously if you are at home with other people such as family or housemates, this is the perfect opportunity to interact more with them – doing exercises or games together is a great way to boost your overall health. However, for those isolated at home, something like an online class is an easy way to create and maintain relationships whilst also boosting physical health. To sign up for an online class, email us here
Understanding how your body responds to being forced to stay in a single environment is an important step to empowering you to prepare for the times ahead. Make sure you have organised a clear plan to maintain an active lifestyle over the next few months and have good support behind you to help you achieve it.
How Do I Book An Appointment?
We’re taking the health of our clients, members and staff very seriously and our preference would be for you to call to book an appointment, so that we can make sure to explain our approach to keeping you safe. You can call any of these numbers to schedule a session:
- Customer Support Centre: 02 8607 4000
- Precision Physio Concord: 02 9736 3950
- Precision Physio St Marys: 02 9623 2220
Evolving with the current environment, we are also now offering online appointments, meaning that we can support anyone who is unable to leave their home. Sessions are done via Zoom and as long as you have a laptop or tablet with an inbuilt camera, or a phone with camera, we can help!
To learn more about online consultations, please call us on any of the numbers listed above.