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The majority of Spain is still in Phase 0 of the de-escalation process due to the coronavirus pandemic. As of last Saturday, people can now go out at different times of the day to take a walk, or do some sort of individual physical activity, like riding a bike or running.
- 6am-10am and from 8pm-11pm: people between the ages of 14- 70 may go out for some physical activity with someone from their household for a distance of up to 1km without leaving their county.
- 10am-12pm and from 7pm-8pm: people over the age of 70 or those who need special assistance (people who are disabled) .
- 12pm-7pm: Children younger than 14 years of age may go out accompanied by an adult. Once per day for an hour staying within 1km. (this is the only time block that has been restricted).
- No Restricted Hours: for towns with less than 5,000 inhabitants.
The general recommendation is to practice social distancing, and when that is not possible then you should wear some kind of facial protection like a mask. The most important thing above all else is to comply with the guidelines laid out by the experts. Of course you can enjoy your outing as well as follow the rules. Pay attention to our suggestions below so that you can make the most of your daily outings and feel great both mentally and physically.
Take Advantage of the Sun Shine
Walking in the rain, or under the stars has its charm, but right now we need more than ever an increase in Vitamin D as we’ve spent a long time locked up inside. Check the weather, and if you see that it’s sunny go outside and soak up those first rays of sunshine, or sometime before it starts to get dark. If it’s already heating up where you are, don’t forget to put on some sunscreen on your face and arms, especially if you have sensitive skin.
Although it might be hot when you leave the house, calculate how long you’ll be out. For example, if you start your workout at 8pm, don’t forget to grab a jacket or sweatshirt because it will probably start to get chilly when you’re headed home. The change in temperature, especially after spending so long at home can make you easily catch a cold, which will just put you back holed up at home. Same thing if you go out in the early morning, you can feel the difference in the weather from when you first go out (it’s chilly) but by the time you head home it’s started to heat up again. So keep all this in mind when picking out your clothes.
Attention Early Birds!
From 6 to 10 am, especially closer to 6am, are for those people who don’t hate the alarm. But let me tell you, starting the day with a little exercise and being able to feel free to do whatever you want the rest of the day is a great feeling. It’s also a great alternative for people who don’t have a lot of free time later in the day. Another advantage is that you’re sure to see far less people the earlier you go out.
Take the opportunity to structure out your day and schedule everything you want to do. If you’ve got a lot of work to do, meetings or other stress-related activities a walk or a little exercise at the beginning of the day will help you to be more relaxed and better prepared for whatever the day throws at you. You can be your own emotional coach filling yourself with confidence and positivity.
If you’re someone who doesn’t skip breakfast, you can decide to have it before or after your outing. A little almond milk with fruit, seeds and granola, or perhaps a fruit smoothie loaded with energy. Some raw nuts, or maybe natural creams to start your day off on the right foot.
Many of you can go out mid-morning and before eating. To feel more relaxed, and enjoy your outing as much as possible it might be a good idea to try and do your chores before leaving. That way you don’t feel stressed while you’re out, thinking of all the things you still have left to do at home. You’ll also go home feeling hungry, so start thinking about a good meal filled with vitamins and healthy fats. Watch out for those snacks, like juices or other pre-made products loaded with sugar. They are neither beneficial nor will they give you the lasting energy you need.
The last hours of the day: A Great Time To Disconnect
For some of us it’s a pain to think of leaving the house as the sun starts to set, but it’s the perfect time to connect with yourself. For those of us who work until the later afternoon, and have had many meetings, and tasks to do we usually crave getting out and getting some fresh air. You can still enjoy those last minutes of sunshine and you’ll go back home feeling relaxed and ready for dinner and bed.
Mindfulness In Action
If you wish to use your time outside as a moment of relaxation in the day to get in touch with yourself, then you can use this technique called mindfulness while you’re out for a walk or some physical activity. In this way, not only will you be getting some fresh air but you’ll also be learning new ways to relax which will be very useful when things start to go back to normal. Mindfulness is all about being completely aware of every sensation and movement of your body, or of the environment you’re in. While you’re walking you can focus on your breathing. You can inhale and exhale deeply which will start to relax you and clear your mind.
Focus on the movement of your legs and arms as you are walking calmly. Try to mentally go through every muscle moving in your body while you move,or just watch your feet spread apart and hit the road again. These are small things so your mind focuses on repetitive movement and stops you from thinking about things that worry you. The great thing about being Mindful when you’re outside is that you have so many parts that you can apply the technique to. A bridge, some stairs, a church, a sculpture or whatever it is that you find useful to just stop, go up and stare at.
The background noise of the wind, or the birds and even the cars can help you to focus more on what you are hearing and less on your worries. Obviously it’s more relaxing to be somewhere less noisy, or where the sounds of nature are more present as they often go unnoticed. As you walk during those last hours of the day, when there is less bustle in the streets it’s a great opportunity to just focus on the sounds of the trees moving. And, if you prefer some relaxing music instead you can also bring your headphones. There are a lot of videos and audio guides online teaching Mindfulness.
Share Your Day With Family or Friends
Besides just spending time with yourself, you can also take this moment in the day to share your thoughts with your family and friends. You can talk by phone and tell them about your day (probably better with headphones in, that way you don’t have to hold your phone the whole time) or you can simply chat with them as you walk together if you live with them. Don’t forget to plan a delicious and healthy dinner for at home or at work in the coming days.
Make Your Own Routine To Go Out
Although some people prefer not to have their daily walk totally planned out, for others it’s a great incentive to stick to their plan and achieve their daily goals. A walking routine or exercise plan will help you create that habit and feel good when you set out to do it everyday. Take the opportunity to plan a walk through those streets close to home that you really like but never have time to enjoy, or go to a green space if you have the opportunity.
Even though you can’t go far from home, I’m sure that there are areas near you that you don’t usually go through, but that sound like a good idea now. Create your own personal tour of them!
Sure, there are many of us who want to get in shape but don’t know how or where to start. However starting by walking quickly and then moving on to jogging is a great idea. Plus, you don’t want to just jump in to running as that would not be beneficial for your muscles or body. You can also start by going up and down some stairs near your home. Repeat these exercises everyday, changing the frequency and intensity each time and soon you will become a runner. It’s also a good time to take advantage of your bicycle or those skates that you have always wanted to use but that started to gather up dust in the storage room.
And Most Importantly: Choose Something That Makes You Feel Good
This is not the easiest time for anyone, especially if you know someone going through a bad time either emotionally, physically, or economically. So walking every day is the ideal time to reconnect with yourself and to try to fill yourself with good vibes. Wear some clothes you like, organize some delicious meals for before or after your walk, chat with someone special, whatever makes you feel good.
Take the opportunity to socialize more with the people you live with after a very busy day at work. It’s a good time for a quiet chat, or to challenge your sibling to see who does more exercise on their own during their time to go out. If after so much time at home you need a moment for yourself, to enjoy the fresh air and natural light, put on your favorite music or a fun podcast and go out on your own.
Most importantly, don’t make this feel like something obligatory but rather optional. Do it when you feel like it, and when you do, enjoy it to the max!
If you’ve been yearning to go, and you’ve enjoyed our tips to enjoying it to the max then please check out these other articles where we give you some other ideas to help you through this particularly strange time that we are living:
Obese and Overweight: Bad Allies Against The Coronavirus
Five Original Plans To Do With The Kids At Home
Avoiding Carbs: The Best Option During Lockdown
Natural Athlete With Our Health Workers
Healthy Snacks To Pick At During Lockdown
7 activities To Improve Your Mood During Lockdown