Cold weather and the continued increase of COVID infections make it more and more difficult to find a safe place to enjoy a complete, effective workout. Your community fitness center makes it easy to work out without leaving home, but you need to take the same precautions you would in a public gym. The following tips can help you stay fit and avoid infection.
One of the many benefits of living in your apartment community is a fitness center in which the equipment is only shared by the residents of your community. Even if very few people use your fitness center, it’s still important to wear a mask, clean your hands and surfaces, and practice social distancing to help protect the health and safety of other residents.
– Do not use the fitness center or any other public amenities when you feel sick.
– Wash your hands or use hand sanitizer when you enter the gym.
– Wipe down the equipment before and after you use it.
– Do not use public water fountains and avoid touching the mouth of your water bottle with your hands.
– Be conscious of when you touch your phone, headphones, and other personal items during and after the use of fitness equipment. Sanitize these items after your workout.
– When you return to your apartment, wash your clothes and take a shower.
It may seem like a difficult or unreasonable expectation to wear a mask while exercising, but some adjustments to your workout routine can make the adaptation to a masked workout easier than you might think. If you usually perform long cardio workouts, now is a fantastic time to switch up your routine and try some circuit training – keep your heart rate up with short bursts of activity followed by short intervals of rest or weight lifting to avoid breathing heavily.
If you’ve always wanted to try yoga, this is a wonderful time to start! The meditative effects of yoga have been shown to reduce stress, something we can all appreciate as we face new challenges. The slow, measured breathing involved in yoga practice also makes mask-wearing less unbearable and makes it less likely that you can spread the virus. Pilates is another effective workout that requires you to control your breathing so that you can maintain your fitness while wearing a mask.
Learn the patterns of other community members who use the fitness center and do your best to work out when the gym is empty. It’s best to avoid sharing air with other exercisers when you can. Even with a mask, you can catch or spread COVID when you breathe heavily in an enclosed space with another person for as little as 15 minutes. Plan more short workouts, perhaps one in the morning and one after work, to minimize the consecutive time you spend in the fitness center. It may even boost your energy level to split your workouts into smaller components!
If working out in a fitness center is still not an option for you, check out our blog post about Home Workouts for how to achieve a successful workout right from your apartment!