Many People Forced to Make Fitness and Exercise Adjustments

Amanda Ross, Reporter

During these times, it can be difficult to stay active, especially considering the closure of gyms, workout facilities, and certain sports. However, many have turned to alternative ways to get exercise despite these COVID-19 restrictions. 

There are plenty of ways to maintain physical fitness during this pandemic. By wearing masks, people can safely and legally hike, bike, or walk on some of the many beautiful trails that are open to the public in Marin. But, if that is something that doesn’t appeal to you, creating an at-home workout environment can be another solution. 

Novato High sophomore Elle Carrow described the creation of her garage gym during quarantine.

“My brothers and I have made a garage gym over quarantine, which has been really nice to have. We had started making it in the middle of quarantine, like May/June, and then we got boxing gear and a bench for Christmas so that has been our most recent addition, but we are looking to add more,” she said.

Another Novato High sophomore, Hannes Gerber, talked about his similar experiences with staying fit during quarantine.

“Since gyms are closed, I also do home workouts with the equipment that I have and try to focus on specific muscle groups at a time,” said Gerber. “I follow workouts on Youtube because it’s nice having your workout already organized by the person who made it.”

Youtube workouts have made a significant rise in popularity during the pandemic. Hannes enjoys watching Jesse James West, a vlogger who films his workouts and encourages his viewers to follow along. Other popular fitness Youtubers include Chloe Ting and Pamela Reif, both of which were extremely popular back in April through June of 2020. 

Denise McIntyre, NHS swimming and water polo coach and President of sports boosters, suggested a plan for students who are struggling or lacking motivation to get out and be active.

“Do their best to form their own cohort and stay within that social bubble. There’s tons of stuff available online, you know, with Youtube there’s really no excuse not to be able to do something,” McIntyre said. “But if the motivation is you need people with you, you could always create a challenge. And you don’t necessarily have to workout together, but you can report your results and challenge one another.”

Certain gyms in Novato are providing their guests with Covid-safe workout opportunities, including Crossfit Novato. Health Coach at Crossfit Novato, Michael Atkinson, explained that there are several precautions their facility is taking to ensure the safety of those working out.  

“It is a scary and uncertain time,” Atkinson said. “We have seen a huge increase in our personal training client base, so that is a blessing, and I believe people are becoming more cognizant of how important their health is with the pandemic.”

Staying active during these times is crucial to good health; both physical and mental. People are finding innovative ways to stay in shape regardless of any difficult restrictions they are faced with.