Recent circumstances might have changed the way you work and the way you workout. With tightened social distancing measures enforced by Ministry of Health (MOH) in light of the rapid outbreak of Covid-19, the authorities have been calling for everyone to stay home and minimise contact with people unless necessary. We know what you might be thinking: “Aha! This might be a good time for me to take a break!” So your cheat days will turn to weeks and you will soon find yourself falling off the wagon into a sedentary state. Let us tell you the immediate and long-term negative impacts to both your mind and body the moment you quit exercising. Don’t let this time be your excuse to stop.
Increase Your Risk For Heart Diseases
In a study, researchers found out that after two weeks of not exercising, our blood vessels will begin to stiffen and this can cause our blood pressure to rise.
As our blood pressure becomes higher, the cells of our arteries’ inner lining are being damaged. When the artery walls become less elastic, blood is unable to flow freely to our heart and this can cause us to experience chest pains, irregular heart rhythms or even a heart attack.
On top of that, high blood pressure can also cause the muscles in our heart to weaken and work less efficiently which can eventually lead to a heart failure.
Your Muscles Shrink
Your diminishing strength could be a sign that your muscles are shrinking.
During inactivity, you will start to lose muscle mass very quickly. The muscles that you have spent so much gym hours to develop, will be shrinking in just a few days.
Though protein shakes and protein powders are popular in helping us build muscles, an increase in protein intake might not result in muscle gain, if we leave our exercise plan out.
In fact, the slight muscle damage which occurs during our workout is associated with healing and this helps to improve the rate of our muscle growth.
Greater Chance Of Having Depression
We all know that exercising releases feel-good endorphins. That strong and invincible feeling you get after ticking off a good workout is definitely a mood booster for many.
Professor Bernhard Baune, head of psychiatry at the University of Adelaide, stated that when one ceases his or her exercises, a significant increase in depressive symptoms could be seen after just 3 days, in some cases.
Whereas other studies have shown that it can take one to two weeks for depressive symptoms to show up after exercises have been halted.
Your Energy Level Drops
Feeling tired all day? What you need probably isn’t long hours of sleep but some exercises to reboot your body.
In a review of studies, 1500 people found that exercise may reduce fatigue.
Simple exercises such as standing, taking a flight of stairs and walking are useful in providing your body with the much needed adrenaline to keep you fresh and alert while working from home.
So instead of sitting down all day long in front of your laptop, stand up and walk around your house to improve blood circulation throughout your body and come back to your desk with a clearer mind.
Increase Our Risk Of Osteoporosis
It is stated that people who spend most of their time sitting down, have a higher risk of osteoporosis than those with a more active lifestyle.
Most of us have probably heard about osteoporosis, a medical condition which causes our bones to become weak and brittle. When one suffers from osteoporosis, a fall or even mild stresses can cause a fracture which commonly occur in the hip, wrist or spine.
Stay Home, Stay Fit
The World Health Organisation stated that adults aged 18 to 64 are generally encouraged to do at least 150 minutes of moderate activity or 75 minutes of vigorous-intensity aerobic physical activity a week. For instance, you could try completing 30 minutes of moderate-intensity activity 5 times per week to hit the target.
Never let the stay-home situation be a hurdle for you to keep to your fitness routine. Fitness First Singapore as well as our other sister brands within the Evolution Wellness Group have launched free virtual classes via live streaming on social media.
These classes do not require any gym equipment and can be easily accessed via a laptop or smartphone, so there is no reason why you should skip your fitness routine.
All you need is just a set of workout attire and a burning enthusiasm for our classes.
This is the new normal in these difficult times, and it’s just something that we have to adjust to as communities isolate and distance themselves during this period. Together we can overcome this and swing back stronger than ever. #SGunited
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- Mayo Clinic. 2019. How High Blood Pressure Can Affect Your Body. [online] Available at: <https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/high-blood-pressure/in-depth/high-blood-pressure/art-20045868> [Accessed 28 March 2020].
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- The Independent. 2018. Cutting Out Exercise Can Increase The Risk Of Depression, Study Finds. [online] Available at: <https://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/health-and-families/depression-exercise-stop-increase-risk-symptoms-trigger-mental-health-study-a8270216.html> [Accessed 28 March 2020].
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- Mayo Clinic. 2020. Osteoporosis - Symptoms And Causes. [online] Available at: <https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/osteoporosis/symptoms-causes/syc-20351968> [Accessed 30 March 2020].
- Medicalnewstoday.com. 2019. What Conditions Can Cause Muscle Wasting?. [online] Available at: <https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/325439> [Accessed 30 March 2020].
- Shape Singapore. 2015. The Truth About Fat And Exercise | Shape Singapore. [online] Available at: <https://www.shape.com.sg/fitness/truth-about-fat-and-exercise/> [Accessed 30 March 2020].
- The Straits Times. 2015. Balanced Diet Better For Gaining Weight. [online] Available at: <https://www.straitstimes.com/singapore/health/balanced-diet-better-for-gaining-weight> [Accessed 30 March 2020].