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I am excited to announce that we are  starting a NEW WELLNESS SERIES. Once a month we will be focusing on simple things we can do to improve our overall wellness. 

This month our piece is written by Laura Wyman. Laura is a Pediatric Nurse Practitioner, who also lives with several chronic conditions, like Lupus.  She and her husband opened a gym last year in their hometown.  She coaches the developmental youth group and is working toward her certification as a fitness nutrition specialist. Their Gym, Wyman’s Gym, offers in person workouts and training, as well as virtual training.  

Quarantined. A word many of us never imagined would be part of our lifetime, let alone our daily lives.  Yet, here we are.  All struggling with the challenges a pandemic has literally dropped on our laps.  Rapidly changing recommendations, guidelines, rules and laws have been hurled at us for the past three months, and frankly, I have grown tired of having the proverbial rug yanked out from under me every other day!  Enough is enough. Time to regain a sense of control, and empower those seeking to get stronger.

I, personally, crave stability and routine, at least a bit of it.  Coronavirus crashed our comfort zones, and literally forced us all to move forward with eyes wide open, whether we wanted to or not.  As a small business owner, the pandemic has shattered several “structures.”  Our physical location was forced to close, which actually broadened our horizons beyond our expectations.   We adapted by giving our members outdoor and in-home training suggestions, as well as implementing an online Zoom platform to continue to Coach virtually and remotely.

How can I stay active during quarantine!?

This pandemic does not have to immobilize you.  We have all adapted and modified, and slowly transitioned into a new sense of normalcy.  As we move through the various governmental colored matrices, our goal as gym owners and Coaches is to continue to offer quality coaching for anyone and everyone desiring to increase their strength.  The single most popular question we have received, undoubtedly, is “How can I stay active during quarantine?”  This is a layered question, hence a layered answer.

Please allow me to preface it by saying I have been blessed with many roles thus far…for the moment I get to stack hats with the best of them, as a nurse practitioner and essential worker, gym owner and coach, wife-mother-sister-daughter-aunt-friend, and health advocate for several communities. Let me say,  I am not “just a nurse,” or a random provider, I am also a boss babe with several chronic autoimmune labels.

I am quite literally on both sides of the patient care fence, daily!! I have had systemic lupus for seventeen years, rheumatoid arthritis for almost as many, hashimoto thyroiditis and severe asthma just to officially be half-dead in paper. Which has quite literally on both sides of the patient care fence, daily!! I also have a pacemaker that keeps me vertical.  And I am the mother of a lupus warrior.  Point being, I have earned some credence in multiple arenas, and I hope this at least implies I know a bit about the things I am about to suggest.

Quarantine is not about limits.  

Quarantine is about health maintenance!!  How can one best maintain their health?  Solidify the basics.  Eat well, exercise, get enough sleep, manage stressors as best as possible.  Utilize those six best doctors of the world (fresh air, water, sunshine, rest, exercise, diet).  Make them part of your daily routine, and I can guarantee improvements.In other words, drink half your body weight daily in water unless otherwise restricted by your health provider. Certainly, there are instances where this should not be practiced, but the majority of us need to drink more water.  Hydration is vital to cell function.  It clears your skin, flushes your kidneys and liver, regulates your blood pressure and heart rate, improves pain and mobility and muscle function, and can prevent and eliminate headaches.

Eat healthy balanced meals. Avoid processed foods and excess sugar as much as possible.  Aim for six to eight hours of sleep per night minimally.  Move your body!!!  Every day. Even if it’s just a few leg lifts or toe touches, do it!!  Move it or lose it is the complete truth!  Get outside as much as possible.   Fresh air and sunshine have been proven to increase lung function, kill viral loads, stimulate vitamin D production, and improve your mood.

Use whatever you’ve got

Certainly there are modifications that became illuminated under current conditions of COVID-19. Established guidelines quickly closed businesses, gyms and health facilities limiting access to prior exercise routines.  This disruption alone induced stress for many!How to maintain movement when mandated to stay at home??  Use whatever you’ve got!!  Your sofa or dining room chairs for inclined pushups, an ottoman for step ups and squats, stairs for cardio, fill some water jugs for dumbbells or a backpack as a weighted vest for more advanced levels.

 Our gym has members of literally every strength level and age.  We modify daily and throughout each session according to the needs and goals of each client.  From two people who have lost weight and kept it off, gotten stronger despite multiple health issues, know and believe that it absolutely can be done!!  We are more than happy to help anyone who is committed to the process, and look forward to sharing our journey.

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