Let’s Get Physical

Governor Murphy has extended the stay-at-home order for New Jersey through at least May 15 as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic. While most people have been fortunate to stay healthy during this time, remaining sedentary in the house can have a drastic impact, especially to the waistline. With the thought of having to wear pants (at some point) after weeks of existing in sweats and pajama bottoms, it’s time to begin a workout for both the body and soul.

In this time of social distancing, many fitness chains have embraced technology to create virtual classes and applications that provide real-time instruction, on-demand videos, and tips to fulfill all workout needs. Whether it is a brisk walk outside, a game of H-O-R-S-E with family, an online Zumba class, or an at-home gym complete with weights and a Stairmaster, routine and consistency are key. According to the President’s Council on Physical Fitness, the Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans recommends 30 minutes of physical activity a day for adults and 60 minutes for children at least five days a week.

The American College of Sports Medicine recommends the following ways to be active in the home during this stressful time.

Aerobic Activities


  • Put some music on and walk briskly around the house or up and down the stairs for 10-15 minutes, 2-3 times per day.
  • Dance to your favorite music.
  • Jump rope (if your joints can handle it).
  • Do an exercise video.
  • Use home cardio machines if you have them.

Outdoor Activities (if allowed by your government)

  • Walk or jog around your neighborhood. Stay six feet away from others.
  • Be active in a local park. Spending time in nature may enhance immune function. Wash your hands immediately when you get home.
  • Go for a bicycle ride.
  • Do gardening and lawn work.
  • Play active games with your family.

Strength Training

  • Download a strength workout app to your smartphone, such as the 7-Minute Workout (no equipment necessary).
  • Do a strength training video.
  • Perform yoga – deep breathing and mindfulness can also reduce anxiety.
  • Find ways to do simple muscle strengthening exercises around your house such as:
    • Squats or sit-to-stands from a sturdy chair
    • Push-ups against a wall, the kitchen counter or the floor
    • Lunges or single leg step-ups on stairs

There are no recommendations at this time to limit physical activity if you do not have any symptoms. If you begin to have symptoms, follow CDC recommendations. As these recommendations are changing, below is a link to the CDC Symptoms webpage: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/symptoms-testing/symptoms.html

For more information or to find a specialist, please visit www.rwjbh.org/medicalgroup and select find a doctor, where you can search by physician name, specialty or location.