Experimenting with a COVID-19 lifestyle

I recently undertook an experiment to determine what effects a sedentary lifestyle brings to our bodies. I train six mornings and four evenings a week. Some days I train four hours a day on top of my work hours. I train damn hard. Kickboxing / gym / early morning cardio & stretching sessions. I also walk, on average, 15,000 steps per day (thanks to a Fitbit I received for Christmas).

Due to COVID-19 I recently undertook to work from home for just short of one full week. This was the perfect opportunity to try my own experiment. I took it upon myself to stay as sedentry as possible (laptop to kettle mostly) for the full duration. It was tough. Extremely tough! I did go for a walk on day 4 just to fill my lungs.

On day seven I went back to work by starting the day with a thirty minute stretch and cardio workout. The first few minutes were amazing! Getting blood flowing, speeding up the heart, stretching from the neck all the way down the body (12 minutes spent stretching, in particular my lower-back). Getting blood and oxygen firing through the muscles! Hitting the abs and obliques! Sweating again! This was amazing!

In the seven days with minimal exercise I had gone from 13.11 stone 14.4 stone! I wasn't sleeping as well as I usually do! I was becoming lethargic!  Towards the seventh day I noticed pains starting to creep in! My skin took a hit (spots)! I was also becoming grumpy! My diet was non-existent. Snacking with endless cups of tea followed by big dinners every night!

This was in a short time-frame of seven days!!
We have to be strict with ourselves. We have to move. We have to stretch. Pumping oxygen around the body makes the brain sharper. Toxins that build up from being sedentary are released. Set reminders to do the above. This is so crucially important!

I posted the below previously but now, more than ever is a good time to re-cap.

A large majority of employees (and people in general) that sit for long periods of time and not exercising will experience back pain or discomfort (in particular, lower back pain). The muscle mass we need to support our frame disintegrates because these vital muscles are not being used. It stands to reason. If the muscle thinks it’s not needed it’s not going to sustain itself and regenerate. It will simply disintegrate. It’s a fact of life. You have to work it in order for it to do what it needs to do. The more these muscles are not being used the harder it becomes to support our frame, thus leading to bad posture aches & pains!

We have to take responsibility of our health whilst working in different work environments. Work-life has evolved.  Technology means we are sitting. We have to take charge of ensuring our bodies are at their very best in order to do work that involves sitting for long periods. This doesn’t mean hitting the weights and building ourselves up to world-champion levels or going out smashing marathons. It simply means knowing the right exercises to do in order to sustain (and grow) the right muscles we use to keep correct posture. It means knowing the right stretching techniques to do (and doing them correctly!) to keep those important ligaments doing what they are designed to do. As little as 10 minutes a day exercising the right muscles will improve posture, will stimulate muscle-regeneration and promote growth.

We, and only we are accountable for our own health. It’s now that we need to account for our health…..Not next week…not next month…. Not next year…. now!