Canes Covering Coronavirus, Florida, Miami

Exercising outside during COVID-19

Maria Jose Flores
Miami, Florida
4 p.m. Tuesday, May 12

Exercising outside during COVID-19

Regular exercise is good not only for you physically but also mentally. And during this uncertain time, it can be an anchor to remain grounded through the storm.

While many states have stay-at-home and shelter-in-place orders, obviously most gyms and fitness centers are closed. In light of these closures, if you are a regular exerciser going outside for a short run, bike, or a walk with your dog is a great way to stay active and feel better.

I´ve been going on 20-minute walks outside my neighborhood for the last couple of days, and it really makes me feel better and helps clear my mind, especially after being home most of the time.

Janet Conner, an infection preventionist with North Colorado Medical Center, offers some guidelines:

1. Social Distancing

If you plan to head outdoors for a walk, run or bicycle, maintain your distance – 6 feet between you and others. If you are hiking, choose a less popular trail and at less crowded times. As exciting as it may be to gather at a park or neighborhood for an outdoor workout, don’t use outdoor exercise as an excuse to ignore social distancing.

2. Avoid Touching Your Face

Always avoid touching your face unless you know your hands are clean.

3. Wash Your Hands

Wash your hands before and after your workout with soap for at least 20 seconds

4. Stay Home If You’re Sick

If you have a fever, cough or are having difficulty breathing, stay home away from others to prevent sharing germs with others.

5. Don’t Go Overboard

Now is not the time to overdo it in the fitness department. If you aren’t used to a certain kind or amount of exercise, start out slowly to avoid injuries.

What about wearing a mask?

It depends. If you’ll be exercising in an area where you’ll be crossing paths with lots of other people, it wouldn’t hurt, Connor said.

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