DragonflyCBD Wellness Series: Exercise
In a moment when wellbeing is more important than ever, we at DragonflyCBD have called on our network of GP’s, pharmacists and scientists to gather some facts, tips and recommendations on the essential areas of wellbeing. Today we’re talking about staying active during the lockdown – an essential part of maintaining a healthy body and mind.
One of the most difficult aspects of the lockdown is that feeling of stir craziness we all get from being stuck inside for too long. Exercise is a fantastic way to alleviate some of the mental and physical pressure that builds up when you’re at home 24/7.
Whether you’re headed outside or staying at home, we’ve got some tips on how to make the most of your exercise during lockdown:
Walking is the easiest and simplest way of getting your body moving. A long, brisk walk is a great way to work your cardiovascular system without putting too much stress on your body. The NHS recommends trying to keep at a pace of around 3mph, which should leave you with enough breath to talk but not enough to sing a song.
Not only does walking provide physical benefits, it’s a great way to give your mind some room to unwind and process all of the thoughts and emotions that have built up during your time sat still at home. The physical rhythm of walking allows your body to go on autopilot, letting your mind work through whatever problems or concerns you might have been pondering.
Another simple way of getting some time out of your house and in the fresh air is to go for a run. Running is arguably the best way of reducing the age of our cardiovascular system. Indeed, a UCL study earlier this year confirmed that training for a marathon improves the elasticity of our arteries.
Of course, you don’t have to be training for a marathon to go out for a run. Even something as short as a 5K once or twice a week will benefit the body.
With gyms closed and few of us owning home exercise equipment, bodyweight exercises are the best way to stay strong and build and maintain muscle tone during our time at home.
The great thing about bodyweight exercises is that they tend to engage many different muscle groups simultaneously, as you’re utilising your bodyweight as resistance. Exercises such as push ups, squats, lunges, dips, planks and burpees are all great ways to get a sweat on without needing any specialist equipment.
‘HIIT’ is the latest trend to take the fitness world. Standing for High Intensity Interval Training, HIIT workouts involve doing short bursts of vigorous exercise, followed by short periods of rest, all packed into a short time period.
HIIT workouts tend to mix slow strength based movements, such as press ups or crunches, with dynamic, aerobic movements, such as lunge jumps or burpees. Typically you’ll perform one or two movements for between 30 and 45 seconds, followed by a rest period or around 30 seconds, repeating the process with different exercises.
HIIT sessions are probably the closest you’ll come to feeling like you’re back in the gym, but require the motivation to push yourself from the comfort of your own living room!