Besides being good for your health, researchers are finding exercise may help protect you from a severe case if you’re diagnosed with COVID. New research from Henry Ford Hospital looked at 246 patients who did a heart exercise known as a “stress test” and then followed up to see which ones came down with COVID later. They found those who had better cardiovascular fitness during their test were less likely to end up in the hospital with COVID in the future, which suggests we can decrease our chances of getting severely sick with the virus by improving our cardiovascular fitness.
These steps can boost your fitness now and boost your chances of avoiding serious illness from COVID in the future, according toDr. Nicholas Nissen, resident physician at Harvard Medical School:
- Find your “why”- To really make your exercise goals stick, you’ll need to figure out why you want to improve your fitness first. Then, consider what’s keeping you from reaching your goal, like being too tired or not having enough time. Knowing the challenges ahead of time will help you work around them to carry out your new goal.
- Consider your options- It’s important to know your current state of health before you start exercising and to choose a workout that’s appropriate for you.
- Create a plan you can stick to- Consistency is key when it comes to fitness, so be realistic when setting goals and formulating your plan. Set aside time in your schedule for exercise and start easy, then ramp up slowly.
- Remove obstacles- Avoid common pitfalls that can become excuses. If you plan to hit the gym after work, but lose motivation when you get home, bring your gym bag to work so you can go directly there. Do you run out of time in the morning for a workout? Do chores like packing lunches and choosing outfits the night before to free up time.
- Make it fun- Can’t stand the treadmill? Try going for brisk hikes, playing tennis or socially distanced dance class. There are all kinds of ways to get your heart rate up and cardiovascular exercise is much easier if it’s something you actually enjoy.
Source:Good Morning America