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Stay home, stay fit

With gyms closed and countless families at home, many people’s normal workout routines have been disrupted. Those who have active jobs or who are used to moving around likely aren’t getting in their typical level of physical activity. Without school, kids don’t have the same opportunities for running and playing.

Exploring new online and indoor exercise options is a great way to stay fit and reduce stress in this uncertain environment. Regular exercise also improves immune function, prevents and controls diseases, improves mood and energy, promotes better sleep, reduces chronic pain, and helps with weight control.

Below are some ideas and resources to keep you active at home:

  • In-home gym workouts: Many gyms are making video and live-steam workouts available—with no membership requirements. Planet Fitness is offering free, live-stream workouts and posting the recordings on YouTube. Other gyms delivering free classes include Life Time and Gold’s Gym.
  • Yoga classes: Yoga with Adriene includes an extensive list of free videos. Some target certain areas of the body, particular emotions, or specific experience levels.
  • Intense workouts: The Exceed Workout Channel offers some heart-pounding workout options. CrossFitters can check out CrossFit SPOT or CrossFit Fort Vancouver for a free workout of the day.
  • Workout apps: There are a multitude of free and low-cost fitness apps. FitOn is one of the more popular free ones. Choose from videos focused on cardio, toning, strength, HIIT, Pilates, circuit, and more.
  • Cult workouts: Peloton is offering a free 90-day trial of its app. If you don’t have a stationary bike, you can try their bootcamp, yoga, stretching, strength, and other options. Barre3 online workouts combine cardio, strength, and balance, and are more affordable than a studio membership.
  • Older adult workouts: Go4Life offers fitness ideas for older adults, and many of them can be done at home. Fitness Blender allows you to find free videos based on fitness level.
  • Kid workouts: Teachers often recommend GoNoodle and Cosmic Kids Yoga to help little ones get some wiggles out.

Of course, you don’t have to exercise along to a video or app. You can also get moving by walking around the inside of your house, walking or running up and down the stairs, doing jumping jacks and pushups, or lifting hand weights.

When the weather is nice—or even when it isn’t—you can get outside for a walk, run, or bike ride. Just be sure to stay at least 6 feet away from others.

If you can, try to exercise at the same time of day. Keeping to a schedule will help you make exercise a habit. It can also be helpful to discuss your exercise goals with others so that they can encourage you and keep you accountable. If you haven’t been exercising, be sure talk to your doctor about how to safely begin.

Kristen Disbrow is a physical therapist at Vancouver Clinic. She believes each patient is unique and requires a treatment approach that is tailored to their individual needs and goals.