Wednesday, April 1, 2020

A for Aerobics - My favourite things to counter COVID-19 stress

(This post is part of the A to Z Challenge. I am writing this month on activities that keep me refreshed during these depressing days. It's Day 1 today.)

I was around 14 years then. While I was walking along with my father in the residential school campus, I met the school headmaster on the way. During our conversation, he looked at me and said, "Why don't you go for a run every day. Do some exercise, it's good for your body and health."

Soon my father began to gently prod me to go for a run in the morning. Initially, I was reluctant. Soon, a run for about 30 minutes became a habit. I was also a part of the school athletics team, initially for short-distance races like 100 meters, and later for long-distance ones like 2,000 meters and 5,000 meters. Once a month, I also went on a cross-country run, which is about 8 km.

During these days, it's a bit frustrating to realise that I can no longer do that sort of running, now that I am 55. But I do long walks and short-distance jogging, and follow that up with some stretching exercises and deep breathing.

Health experts say aerobics -- a term that stands for exercises that involve the active movement of our body along with deep breathing -- improves the blood circulation and generally keeps us healthy. These exercises also have a positive impact on our emotional well-being: it's refreshing.

I have realised that what works best is not short bursts of long hours of strenuous workouts, but consistently exercising, every day, even if it's short duration. And many exercises can be incorporated into our daily routine. Like climbing stairs instead of taking the elevator, or washing some clothes or vessels physically instead of putting them in the machine, or rearranging the study table or wardrobe, sweeping the floor and mopping it.

These are days when we need to take care of our physical as well as mental health.

21 comments:

  1. Thank you for visiting my blog Pradeep.
    Like you, I am very fond of long walks. In fact, all my thinking is done when I'm walking.
    Great tips to keep active too. Thank you.
    Stay safe and all the best for the challenge.
    https://artismoments.blogspot.com/2020/04/a-is-for-aloe-vera-atozchallenge.html

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    1. Thanks, Arti, for dropping by and for your comments.
      Looking forward to the rest of month :-)

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  2. Thanks for this interesting and timely theme. All I know is aerobic exercise lowers blood pressure.

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  3. I tried jogging before a few years and I was able to jog for short distances. But then summer came, and I couldn't get myself to continue!

    I was taught a few exercises in my Karate class when I was in school. I need to restart them sometime, esp. during these days when our physical activity has come down drastically.

    But we walk for at least an hour every day.

    Destination Infinity

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    1. Hi Rajesh - Never too late to begin.
      Walking for one hour is more than enough. But make sure you walk briskly.

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  4. Refreshing indeed, like your theme, it's going to be a very positive attitude here ;))

    If you want to, feel free to join the (non official) A to Z Challengers Linky Party:
    AtoZ Linky party

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  5. Consistent exercising is the key... agree with you. For me, it is easy to start walking/playing badminton, but it's harder to keep a consistent schedule and make it a habit. I really need to work on that. They say that it takes 21 days to form a habit. I am walking everyday in our apartment complex... hope I am able to stick to it after the lock down as well.

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    1. Thanks Shilpa for dropping by.
      Don't aim too big. Start in a small way, and gradually scale it. I will work. Even a few minute of some gentle exercise, even inside our house, is more than enough to start.
      Wish you the best.

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  6. I hope you give us some examples during this A to Z journey.
    Be well and take care.
    ~moonie
    http://moondustwriter.com/2020/04/01/alzheimers-and-old-butcher-knives-short-story-atozchallenge

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    1. Hi Vesseys - Thanks for dropping by. I hope to!

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  7. I've never liked running. But people swear by it. I prefer a nice long walk.

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  8. Exercise is life!

    http://tao-talk.com/2020/04/01/a2z-2020-essential-oils-a-argan-carrier-oil/

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  9. Very true, consistency is the key to long term benefits.

    dropping by from the AtoZ linkup
    Suzy Someday Somewhere AtoZ

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  10. Hari OM
    OH, nearly missed this - somehow it did not show in my reader... But great you are embracing the A-Z!!! YAM xx

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  11. Excellent advice. I miss going to the YMCA for swims and weight lifting. Oh, well. They've turned their facilities into daycare centers and places for first responders who can't go home and need rest. On that note, I should go take a walk in the park. It's a perfect, sunny day for it. I hope you and yours stay safe, sheltered, and supplied.

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    1. Hi Darla - Yes, our walks now are restricted to within the boundaries of the apartment complex. The cops here are way too strict, and are really cracking down on people who are venturing out on one pretext or the other. I don't want to take any chances with them, when there is ample space here to walk.
      Thanks, Take care.

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  12. Aerobics is a great excercise. Unlike gym, this is a lot more interesting and can be done wihtout any equipment.

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    1. Hi Backpack - You are right. I too am not a great fan of the gym.

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