Monday, 30 November 2020

why i won't be going back to the gym any time soon

 


Gyms will be throwing open their doors again this week after the government forced them to close for one month as part of national lockdown 2.0. Are you itching to go back? I'm not sure I am.

I miss training in a gym. I like to exercise in the company of others; I find it motivating and productive. The vast array of equipment is a big draw too, making exercise choice pretty much limitless. 

In times of stress the gym has been my breathing room; exercise helps me to decompress. I'm not alone in this. The damage to mental health caused by gyms closing has been a key argument raised by those campaigning for them to remain open in any lockdown going forward.
 
I've been a member of a gym for most of my life, for all of the reasons above.  I've had gym breaks before, many, and I've always managed to find my training feet again fairly quickly.


The situation this time around though is very different. The gym experience has changed. Members must follow social distancing and solo training rules. No training with mates and no spotting. No stopping for a sneaky chat by the weights stack either!  Equipment must be wiped down before and after use.

The one-way systems and 2m distancing floor markings are a further stark reminder of why this new order exists - there's a new highly infectious and deadly virus spreading in the community.

Where we each stand on a return to the gym this week will be influenced very much by personal circumstance and situation. 

I've been devastated by family loss this year. It has brought in to sharp focus the fragility of life. It's made me feel nervous and be more cautious over the choices I make. 

I'm also battling injury and worsening osteoarthritis. The physio plans I've been given I can complete at home. 

This week will mark eight months since I last stepped foot inside a gym (physio sessions aside). I miss it, but I doubt I'll be returning any time soon.
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