With gyms closed, how are people staying active at home?


By Gavin Merschel, Staff Reporter

Junior Isaiah Willis used to go to the gym with the football team every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday after school. Now, with that option no longer available, Willis and most other athletes are trying to exercise with their limited resources.

“I am trying to keep the fitness; the work ethic is still in me. I usually wake up pretty early and do some workouts in the morning, usually some cardio or speed and agility type stuff in the morning when I’m most active and have the most energy,” Willis said. “I walk around the block or run around the block with my family, get active, just get some air.”

Before the COVID-19 outbreak, Conestoga students had access to various forms of exercise such as playing a sport, going to a gym such as the YMCA or Lifetime, or going on runs with a friend. Due to social distancing, most of these options are currently unavailable.

    For athletes training to perform at their peak, [something in the active voice]. To fill this void, teams such as the football, lacrosse, baseball, crew and track teams, have been sending out workouts to their players to give them a stable routine. Willis uses the football team’s workouts as a guideline. 

“I go by their plan every day they post something. I do what they do, but I do a little extra that me and my dad do as well,” Willis said.

Along with workouts, some teams have posted challenges and fun events on social media for their athletes to complete to encourage connection between teammates. The girls’ lacrosse team has been posting a series of workouts, stick tricks and other drills to benefit not only current players but also anybody interested in lacrosse. Girls’ lacrosse senior Anne Nikolic reflects on the experience.

“Since we found our season has been canceled, we have been trying to stay positive,” Nikolic said. “On our Instagram, our team has been posting many fun workouts, stick tricks and lacrosse series. We wanted not just ourselves but everyone in the community to stay connected by continuing to play lacrosse. It is such a special sport to many people, and there are so many activities anyone can do in quarantine.”

Students such as junior Nick Arbes, who go to the gym for personal gain, have also been affected by the outbreak. Arbes was dedicated to maintaining fitness to the top of his ability before quarantine, but now his plans have taken a detour.

“Before quarantine, it was a lot of heavy lifting. I was able to go to the gym. I had a routine. I was keeping my body fat levels super low. I was eating really clean,” Arbes said. “But then by the first couple weeks of quarantine, it was tough because the gyms were closed, and I kind of let it go a little bit. I was not eating super clean. But then after a week went by, I hopped back on the train.”

Junior Nick Arbes exercises in his home using whatever resources he has. Arbes worked out at the gym regularly to stay in shape prior to the implementation of state-wide stay at home orders.

    Though the incentives for staying in shape right now may be gone. Maintaining fitness during this time also serves to keep all athletes connected emotionally to their sports and ready to come back in full-swing as soon the social distancing orders are lifted.

“Our season might be over, but our team is still continuing to go through this together and staying connected as much as we can,” Nikolic said.

Gavin Merschel can be reached at [email protected]