How to Stay Active During Self-Quarantine

It’s Corona time. No, sadly I don’t mean the beer. COVID-19 is sweeping the world. Gyms are closed, grocery store shelves are empty, and many of us are on lock-down at home in an effort to flatten the curve. On March 23, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer declared the State of Michigan’s “Stay Home, Stay Safe” order. I don’t know about you, but most of my days now consist of lots of screen time. As a dietetics Student, I know this is not okay for my overall physical or mental health.

So, how do you stay active if you’re confined to your house? Quarantine could be a good time to relax, but can also a great time to create new, healthy habits to maintain balance. Fortunately, a gym isn’t necessary to be physically active. As long as there is an open space somewhere in your house (or outside) that allows for full body movement, you’re good to go! Below, I have put together a quick workout routine that has helped me get off the couch and get my heart pumping. Each of the following exercises are body-weight movements. However, feel free to use dumbbells for extra resistance!

If you don’t have any dumbbells, but wish to increase resistance, it’s okay to get creative! Containers with handles, such as laundry detergent or milk/water jugs work just as well when doing bicep curls, squats, rows, and side/front raises. Obviously, the fuller the containers, the more resistance you will have and these objects can be filled with water to meet the desired resistance weight. Other options that don’t have handles, but work are water bottles, canned goods, or a 5lb. bag of sugar/flour (make sure it’s sealed tight or you’ll have a mess everywhere!).

Full body workout

Complete 4 rounds of Circuit 1, then move on to complete 4 rounds of Circuit 2.

Circuit 1

  • Squats – 10 reps
  • Stationary lunges – 10 on each leg (or if you prefer- complete moving lunges anywhere you have room (e.g. down a hallway)
  • Push ups – 10 reps
  • Dips (using a chair or stool) – 10 or until failure
  • Russian twist – 10 reps

Circuit 2

  • Burpee – 10 reps
  • Crunches – 10 reps
  • High knees – 30 seconds
  • Jump lunges – 10 on each leg

While this is only one workout routine, there are fitness centers, like Planet Fitness, offering free “Home Work-Ins” daily on their Facebook page for members and non-members alike. Moreover, the clothing brand, Gymshark, offers free in-home workouts on their app. Both of which include a variety of options to choose from. Or, if you enjoy dancing, you can take all this down-time to learn the newest TikTok dance! Exercise does not have to revolve around your typical “weight-lifting” regimen, and it can be fun if you find something you enjoy doing! Facetime a buddy to do a workout together. If the weather is nice, go out for a walk or jog. Just remember to practice social distancing and to stay away from large groups.

About the Writer

Hello, my name is Miranda Greene. I’m a junior in the Coordinated Program in Dietetics at EMU. Although I’m not yet a Registered Dietitian, nutrition and fitness have been big interests of mine for many years now. Finding unique ways to stay fit is a passion of mine.