CORONAVIRUS and exercise
By Dr. Cazamed (www.cazamed.com & @cazmed22)
For many people, exercise may be an occasional event, but for others, it is part of their daily routine. Here are some suggestions regarding how to use this «medicine» in the best way and fight the pandemic.
You know that I am an exercise-loving doctor, and one of the first things I thought when in my country indicated that we should close all public places to avoid crowds, was: «And now I will not be able to do exercise? » Here are some recommendations about exercise, if it is done in the right way, you will help us (doctors) to fight against this global threat.
Can I continue exercising?
Of course. Whether at home or in open environments we must continue exercising, there is no doubt that it is one of the best strategies for managing physical and mental health during this time of little social contact.
Can I go out to exercise outdoors?
Of course. In terms of spread infections, it is much better to exercise outdoors than in closed environments such as gyms or houses where we have people isolated and infected with respiratory symptoms or suspected coronavirus. If you do an exercise session outdoors, remember to go out alone or maximum with one or two people at low risk to be infected (no recent trips or contact with people who have done, there are no respiratory symptoms)
What type of exercise can I do outdoors?
Definitely, aerobic exercise like walking, running or cycling are excellent options. Don’t hesitate to start a low-intensity exercise plan or continue your training despite the panic that exists worldwide. It is not recommended to swim during this time, not because of the risk of contagion with the water, but because most of the aquatic training centers conglomerate people in the entrance, dressing rooms or around the pool.
Can I train hard during these days?
The recommendation is to carry out workouts that stimulate your defense system and not weaken it. For this reason, I suggest that the workouts be short and of mild or moderate intensity, without performing sessions of high intensity or duration to avoid the end of glycogen deposits in your muscles and liver, which could weaken your immune system for a short time post-workout. On the contrary, if your training is of moderate duration (less than 60 minutes) and with an equally calm effort, your immune system will be strengthened and ready to fight not only the coronavirus but any other infection. In case you are just starting a habit of physical activity (you were sedentary), do not start with long or strong routines, it would be best to start walking at a fast pace for short periods of time.
Can the virus be spread with sweat or touching something in the external environment?
Until now it is not known whether the virus is spread by sweat. On the other hand, it doesn’t last long on surfaces with direct sunlight, however, if someone recently touched that surface and had sneezed into his hand, you may be able to get contact by contact. That is why I suggest that your training be quiet and no longer than 60 minutes so that you do not need to go anywhere to buy anything and will be enough with the hydration that you take from home. Additionally, I recommend that you carry a towel or sweat dryer on your forearm and this is the only thing that touches your face or body parts to dry your sweat, not directly with your hand. Remember to wash your hands immediately when you get home.
Is it dangerous to spit on the street when I train?
You should not remove respiratory fluids from your body outside, and saliva or sputum must be considered as a secretion from our respiratory tract, this is what can contaminate surfaces and nearby air and can generate contagions.
Can I do home aerobics?
Do not hesitate. Staying physically active can also be achieved at home and have great benefits. Try to keep the windows open and make it in a room or place where there is good air circulation, without people with symptoms or a high risk of being a carrier of the virus.
In conclusion, keeping your body active is a fundamental part of this fight against contact with COVID-19. Maintaining a mild to moderate exercise routine in sessions no longer than 60 minutes can be life-saving and help us stop infections. Training outdoors is a great option as long as you take the suggested and careful steps, but don’t let fear avoid using this wonderful medication to keep your defense system strong and ready to fight off any threat.