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Health Report: Easy at-home workouts for staying active

Published: Mar. 23, 2021 at 5:05 PM AKDT
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FAIRBANKS, Alaska (KTVF) - With many people working from home or staying inside due to the winter weather and the COVID-19 pandemic, some residents may wish to find ways to be more active at home.

While push-ups, sit-ups, and jumping jacks are all excellent ways to get the blood pumping, there are some other options people can participate in according to Mark Oldmixon, Director for Nanook Recreation at the University of Alaska Fairbanks.

“You don’t need to be rich and you don’t need to have a full gym in your garage to stay active. Certainly we have miles of trails around campus and the community for walking or skiing, any of that. Just getting up and moving is really important. The sitting that has happened pre-COVID, and highlighted during COVID, or increased during COVID is something we really have to combat. Simple things at home - you can find anything heavy to lift at home, whether it’s your gallon of milk or your dog food bag. You know you dread the day you have to bring the two bags of dog food up the stairs, do that,” Oldmixon explained.

For many, starting a workout regiment can be challenging. Oldmixon recommends setting easy-to-obtain goals when starting out. “It’s important to have set yourself some goals, some strategic and measurable and obtainable goals. You don’t have to sign up for a marathon on your first day. You can start by going out for an afternoon walk with a friend. Once you get that foundation of just prioritizing in your schedule, then you can set some bigger goals for yourself.”

There are several resources at home and online to keep an individual to their workout regimen. Oldmixon explained, “For me, once I’ve started small and maybe have created a bit of a habit for myself, prioritized that into my schedule, I think the next thing is to have some accountability to continue that because everybody can jump in there for a week and be really attracted to the idea of working out and hit it hard... but after, fall off the train there - so having some accountability whether that’s within your family or friend network. I’ve also found that different online challenges are helpful, whether that’s signing up for a plank a day and you’re posting on social media that you’re working up on your plank time... there’s hundreds of different apps and challenges that you can join to help keep that accountability if you can’t find that within your immediate social network.”

With workout apps, online exercise and yoga classes, and plenty of natural hiking and skiing trails around the community, there are many options for those stuck at home to stay active.

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