How Exercise Might Help Beat The Odds Against COVID
The gyms were all closed down for months and we had a hard time getting ourselves up and exercising at home. The COVID 15 isn't just a joke – many people put on weight during the lockdown.
You know it wasn't the healthiest, you know you should be exercising. You also know it's hard, getting yourself motivated and doing the work it takes is not easy.
But, what if you knew that doing a little bit of exercise lowered your chance of getting sick? What if keeping your heart rate up, your muscles strong, and your body fit significantly reduces the chances of catching the flu, the common cold, or even COVID?
What if this exercise also reduced the co-morbidities that make illnesses so dangerous and you live a stronger, healthier life because of it?
Beating the Cold, Flu, or COVID Means a Strong Immune System
We should let our immune system take care of illnesses first, if possible. Antibiotics are overused, and the bacteria they are meant to destroy are getting stronger because of it.
Additionally, antibiotics do nothing for viruses. Your immune system has to take care of those completely on its own. The best we can do is offer a little bit of help to relieve the symptoms.
That's why you need a strong immune system. You should get in many fruits and vegetables to get the vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants that help the antibodies, T cells, NK cells, and macrophages destroy the bacteria and viruses quickly.
But that's not all. Your immune system needs your lymphatic system to flow freely to eliminate waste and move these antibodies and immune factors to where they need to be. Your lymphatic system is like a highway that ushers the good stuff where it needs to go and gets rid of the bad stuff.
It does not move on its own, however. Only when your body moves does your lymphatic system move. And the more you move in a healthy way, the more your lymphatic system will clear itself out.
This is where exercise steps in. Regularly exercising means you're moving your lymphatic system around regularly. Exercise helps clear out your muscles and replace sugars, oxygen, and other nutrients to build healthy muscles.
It can help clear out your lungs and that helps you breathe deeply. Yes, a lot of viruses are airborne. But, some research shows that breathing deeply helps get oxygen deeper into your lungs, allowing the mucus in the lower part of your lungs to refresh itself. When stagnation happens and you're not breathing deeply, any bacteria that can get into the lower part of your lungs has ample breeding ground that's well protected.
Drinking plenty of water helps. When you're dehydrated, your blood and lymphatic fluids get thicker, making it harder to move around. This is why you can get crampy and stiff when you sit around too much. It's a common cause of high blood pressure, headaches, arthritis pain, and much more.
The area of research most fascinating to most people is looking into the anti-inflammatory properties of exercise. Inflammation is a major issue with respiratory illnesses. Exercise helps the body produce anti-inflammation cytokines that help the body modulate its response. People who exercise tend to have lower inflammation and a higher response for type I interferons (IFN-I), which enables you to fight the virus.
Ways To Get More Exercise In When Stuck At Home
Some people are great at being able to exercise at home, but others are not. Let's take a look at some of the ways to exercise from home to see if these are some of the things you can do!
Go for a Walk
Walking is the best exercise to start. It's easy to do and gets you out of the house. As you walk more, you can turn it into a full-body workout going faster, carrying weights, and doing specific arm exercises while you walk.
YouTube Random Stuff
For people who like to change things up often, YouTube has millions of videos on how to exercise. It ranges from little 5-minute exercise demonstrations to full hour-long workouts. You can try several different exercises to see how they work for your body. Just remember to keep things truly varied and exercise all your muscles.
We know most people don't like to do crunches, but that should be part of your routine.
Sign up for a course or personal trainer
Because of all the lockdowns, many personal trainers went online. Through video conferencing and recorded classes, you can follow along with a personal trainer and get in your exercise routine. A personal trainer is great for accountability if you need that little extra nudge to keep you on track.
Do Out Door Fitness Routines
Many place have classes outside, so you can distance and get your classes in.
When You Can't Exercise At Home
I tried the steps above, I really did. They just didn't work for how I like to exercise. And that's okay, because not everybody can exercise at home. Here's what I did:
Join a gym
Can I schedule 20 minutes to exercise three times a week at home? Nope.
Can I schedule for 1-hour classes plus a 15-minute drive time each way? Absolutely.
Some people just need to get out of the house. There's a mentality of going to exercise that helps put people in the right mindset to do a good workout and get what they need in. For some, like me, it's a chance to shut off everything and take care of my body and mind. For others, it's an escape from chaos. For others, it's a social event. Gyms have the benefit of having various equipment and often classes to attend.
Exercise helps your body clear out and produces a lot of small effects that can boost your immunity. Simply moving around helps clear out your lymphatic system and open up your lungs. Regular exercise keeps you strong and strong people are healthier.