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How to Cope With No Access to Gyms

By: George Clarke

The impact of this second lockdown on the mental health and wellbeing of the general population is a subject that is difficult to ignore. The first lockdown increased rates of depression and anxiety within the UK well above normal rates. Health and financial worries, general uncertainty, routine disruption and limited social contact will all contribute to this problem. That was all the case in the first lockdown, but this time around we are entering the winter months, with shorter daylight hours, grey skies and temperature drop added into the mix.

 

Of the many benefits, regular exercise provides, its positive impacts on mental health has never been more important! The inability to go to the gym and play sports with friends is an unfortunate result of the most recent lockdown rules. Those who rely on these activities for the maintenance of their mental wellbeing will no doubt be negatively impacted if over the next
month.

 

In a recent press conference, Boris Johnson, responded to a question on this very subject by saying that these rules are a “necessary part of a package of measures put in place to reduce the R rate”. Before this he has also admitted that “We know the cost of these restrictions, the damage they do, the impact on jobs, and on livelihoods, and on people’s mental health,’ So, what’s to be done over the next 28 days. Well as personal trainers, we understand the impact this is having on our client’s health and wellbeing! We’ve been busy trying to figure out
how we can properly navigate this lockdown period.

Here’s the advice we’ve been giving:

 

1. Don’t just stop! – It’s tempting to simply give up in the face of these new restrictions, not engage in any form of activity with the assumption that there’s just no point. We highly recommend you don’t fall into this trap! In the words of Bear Grylls.. improvise, adapt, overcome!

 

2. Create your new routine – find the times during the week you could dedicate to exercise (you probably have more time spare during lockdown). Make these time slots regular and explicit, then stick to them.

 

3. Identify a workout space at home – the first thing to do when building a home gym is identifying a space (we explain in this article).

 

4. Create a minimalist workout program – you can seek professional help such as online coaches or personal trainers to do this for you, or use the internet to search for workout
routines that are simple to follow and don’t need a load of equipment.

 

5. Enjoy the great outdoors – we are still allowed to head outside, so make the most of it, jogs and bike rides (especially in the daylight) will do your mental wellbeing a world of good!

 

6. Get others involved – join online exercise classes or create your own with friends and family. This will increase your social interaction and also keep you accountable!

 

The Daily Express featured some of these thoughts in a recent article called ‘Mental health tips during a lockdown: How to cope with no access to sports or gyms – experts’.

If you’re interested in starting your health and fitness journey with us…

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