COVID and Jogging in the city: the pros and cons

Jogging in the city is definately an option. It really does push the body, increasing your heartrate and improving your cardiovascular fitness. It can increase the strength and endurance of your lower body, but really involves the entire body to some degree. It doesn’t require much more than a pair of shoes and requires little to no planning. You can easily vary the intensity and frequency. It can include others if you choose. It can make you feel stronger and more energetic. It can give you an endorphin high and zen like focus. It gets you outdoors and into nature.

But I will have to say, in the early stages of the COVID era it appeared that everyone including their dog and their cat were out jogging. At one point the streets of Toronto were rampant with joggers! No joke.

“Might as well go for a jog”. I remember feeling that way a very long time ago.  Actually, about 25 years ago.  When I was younger and my joints were more resilient to effects of pounding the pavement.  My reasons were I wanted to get fit.  Superfit to be exact.  Jogging can get you there. Lose fat.  Increase tone. A run could shake off whatever negative stuff I was feeling, and yes, I benefited from the endorphin high.  That was a given.

But then I might see several patients in pain as a result of running, and they couldn’t stop. My job was to help them mediate the balance between regeneration and degeneration. I have pushed myself to my own physiological limits several times in the past. A more calculated and reflective approach is now needed to stay clear of injury.

Back to the COVID jogging phenomenon. I will note that the volume of joggers on the streets has dwindled with the re-opening of gyms, and people likely returning to work, changes in schedules, etc. But now that the gyms are closed again, I am wondering if the jogging population will rise yet again?

Winter is also coming. Toronto sidewalks in general are not that great in terms of snow and ice clearance, so where are you going to take this jogging phase?

With the first round of COVID, there were actually fewer people on the streets, so there was indeed more space for the increase in joggers. Now we are essentially back to normal street capacity so it might get busy! Watch yourselves!

I have already been re-evaluating my COVID exercise routine. I think I may spend more time learning and creating new Essentrics routines or something similar of my own, with a strong emphasis on music. I have also been focusing on accomplishing true HIIT routines now that I have a heart rate monitor.

Just keep moving. The more variety you have to choose from the more likely you will keep up a physical routine, regularly. Having options already built in is great. Just think about the bends in the road that are no doubt going to present themselves (including the ice and snow). Have your back up plan ready so you don’t loose the momentum you’ve created.

Onward and upward!

Cheers joggalicious movers! See you on the street! 

Essentrics with Andrea