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Stay home, stay strong with this ‘quarantine’ workout

Louise Lizan



OutFit Philippines coaches Paolo Tomas (left) and Yds Establecida with Daily Tribune’s Louise Lizan.

We’re nearing Week Two of the Luzon enhanced community quarantine that was imposed on 16 March. And as the numbers of positive COVID-19 cases are still on the rise, more drastic measures are being undertaken to flatten the curve and stop the spread of the infection. Meanwhile, being confined in a limited space and trying to keep in shape will be a tremendous challenge in the next few days. Nonetheless, exercising is really essential not just for one’s physical being but it’s also a great way to boost one’s mood while in quarantine.

According to fitness coach Yds Establecida of Outdoor Fitness Philippines (OutFit): “Aside from the health benefits brought by working out, there’s a Harvard study stating that exercise aids in overcoming depression because of the release of endorphins (Happy hormone). Based on my personal experience, it really does. During this pandemic where people have no choice but to stay in their houses because of the quarantine and to further avoid spreading the virus, it’s best to be more productive by staying fit and by continuing to improve ourselves through exercise. It won’t only increase our immunity against diseases but it could also boost our confidence especially when our friends see how fit we still are after the quarantine has been lifted.”

All pre-workout routines come with warming up to mobilize joints and muscles and avoid possible injuries. Each workout session can take up just 20 to 30 minutes of everyone’s time and can easily be incorporated anytime of the day. Coach Yds advised, “Ideally, you can do these for three sets with 12-15 repetitions per set having 45 seconds to one minute rest every after set or depending on your level of capability. Make sure to observe the proper form, breathing and muscles being used to execute these exercises properly.”

In this set of exercises, you only need a floor surface that’s even. Make sure to have a yoga mat for extra safety. This workout shared by him with fellow coach Paolo Tomas aims to target the arms, core and overall body. Coach Yds said this set of exercises will mainly focus on developing the core, arms, butt and leg muscles.

Meanwhile, Coach Yds said that besides being physically healthy it’s also important to have a positive outlook. “Prepare for the worst but always, always hope for the best! This too shall pass. I know there’s a reason why these are all happening now. God has given this break (or trial for some) for us to stay home and cherish and spend quality time with our loved ones
“Frontliners have to go out and work for their families or for the sake of a better outcome but don’t think that by staying in our houses we’re not helping the society overcome the crisis. We’re actually saving lives by preventing the virus from further spreading to other people. Instead of whining, stay optimistic! Help spread good vibes and facts about the current situation, eat healthy, increase your immunity, always do standard precautionary hygienic practices, observe social distancing, workout, stay happy and pray that all of these are part of a better plan for the human race. Carpe diem!”

1. Hip bridges

Exercise 1: Hip bridges.
Photographs by DAVID JOHN CUBANGBANG for daily tribune @tribunephl_dvd

Coach Yds said, “The basic bridge isolates and strengthens your gluteus (butt) muscles and hamstrings (back of the thigh). When done correctly, the move can also enhance core stability by targeting your abdominal muscles and the muscles of lower back and hip.”

Lie flat on your back, knees bent and arms on the side to support your weight then lift your hips off the ground until your knees, hips and shoulders form a straight line. It improves hip flexibility and strengthens lower back — good for people who spend hours hunched back on desks and laptops. The main point of this exercise is the butt or gluteus maximus. It can last for 12 to 15 repetitions (reps), three sets with one to two minutes interval.

2. Elbow plank

Exercise 2: Elbow planks.

Planks are great for working the abs. Start with a plank aligned directly with your shoulders and forearms flat on the ground. Hold the position for 30 seconds or for as long as your stamina could last.

“The plank is an excellent abdominal and core exercise. It works not only the rectus abdominis, but also the other ab muscles and the core muscles that run from the pelvis along the spine and up to the shoulder girdle. To ensure you keep your core strong and stable, add the plank to your ab workout program,” noted coach Yds.

3. Straight-arm Planks with Ins and Outs

Exercise 3: Straight-arm planks with ins and outs.

Other than abs, work on muscles such as legs, arms, shoulders and back. With your arms straight, get into a push-up position on the floor and form a straight line with your body. Use your legs to jump in and out. It can last for 15 reps, three sets with two to three minutes interval.

4. Straight-arm planks with Lunges/Frog Steps 

With the same starting position, step with one foot for each side. 15 reps are required for each side with one to two minutes interval.

5. Jump squats

Exercise 5: Jump squats.

Start by doing a regular squat, feet should be in line with your shoulder before jumping explosively. To land, return to squat position. It focuses on the leg muscles.

Coach Yds said: “This exercise focuses on our glutes and leg muscles which will also affect our cardio endurance. Start off by doing a squat position and then jump. As you jump, slowly return to your starting position which is a half-squat. Make sure to feel the contraction on your glutes as you go down.”




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