Staying in shape during the COVID-19 pandemic

During times of uncertainty and doubt, often our fitness and health are the first to be put aside. Prioritizing your health can improve your immune system and help your body manage the stress of the COVID-19 pandemic.

It is ok to continue training at your regular gym if there have been no reported cases of coronavirus. If you are planning on training at in public be sure to:

  • Wash your hands thoroughly before and after your workout
  • Avoid handshaking, fist-bumping and hugging your gym buddies
  • Be careful of using your phone (recording sets, filming, etc) because it can be an easy way to transmit infection
  • Be mindful of your hygiene whilst training and wipe equipment before and after use
  • Encourage others to adopt hygiene best practice as per the above recommendations
  • Refrain from going to the gym is you have returned from international travel in the past 14 days

If you are avoiding commercial gyms, try this Bodyweight Training Template and Workout Generator that I designed on Google Sheets.

Bodyweight Training Template & Workout Generator

The Bodyweight Training Template can be used to create a tough full-body training session. Use the dropdown menu to pick your favorite exercise. You can add exercises to the drop-down menu by adding them to the list on the right of the screen.

The Workout Generator can create a tough HIIT style session. Tick and untick the checkbox to randomly create a new session. Change the yellow box to change the type of workout (e.g. Tabata to interval training) and add your favorite exercises to the list on the right of the screen.

Both programs require minimal equipment (such as a chair to do dips on, or somewhere that you can hang onto to do rows). Having a resistance band or some DBs will allow you to complete more exercises.

The template can be used to create a program that you can complete at home with next to no equipment. Just change the yellow boxes and add (or remove) exercises in the columns on the right.

The importance of NEAT
If you are quarantined at home, your Non-Exercise Activity Thermogenesis (NEAT) will decrease. Consider NEAT as your overall daily physical activity. When you go about your day, you will complete a certain level of in-direct exercise (walking upstairs, to and from your car, walking around work etc). If you're at home, you will be doing much less physical activity.

For good cardiovascular outcomes and success in the Challenge, it is important to consider your level of NEAT. Be active at home by cleaning, doing housework or activities like gardening. Try going for a walk around the block a few times a day to get your step count up.

Train at home with Coach Steve
I will be creating a series of videos that you can follow to train with me. They will be divided up into Workout A and Workout B based on the Bodyweight Training Template.

Workout A and B are full-body workouts and I'll suggest that you alternate between the two. The videos will be 6 minutes long in a 30:30 structure (30 seconds of exercise: 30 seconds rest). Repeat the 6-minute circuit 2-5 times depending on your fitness level:

Beginner - Repeat the circuit 2-3 times

Intermediate/Advanced - Repeat 3-5 times

Try completing a training session 3-5 times a week with 1-2 sessions of cardio (go for a walk or try the Workout Generator on the Bodyweight Training Template).

If you're looking for a training structure try this:

M Workout A
T Cardio (30 min walk)
W Workout B
T Cardio (Workout Generator)
F Workout A
S Workout B
S Rest
I'll be updating this page every time there is a new video. Click the link in the table below.

Home workout warm-up

Workout A 
Workout 1

Workout B
Workout 1

The training videos will be with minimal equipment. You can always modify an exercise to change the program (e.g. swap a reverse lunge for a lateral lunge), or add load (e.g. dumbbell or resistance band).

Many supermarkets are looking bare and it may be difficult to complete your meal plan. If you are struggling to follow your meal plan, I'd suggest that you follow the Serving Sizes at the top of your plan.

The first number to consider is your overall caloric intake. If you are reduced to baked beans and rice, you can still transform your body. Simply read the label on your food and modify the serving intake to match your caloric goal.

The second number to consider is protein intake. Protein does have positive effects on your immune system and I'd suggest that you still aim to consume 2g/kg of bodyweight. I'd suggest that you base your meals around a source of protein (e.g. legumes, eggs or animal products).

Finally, for your overall health, consider a general multivitamin, Vitamin C supplementation and ensuring that you get enough sunlight (Vitamin D).