How to run safely during coronavirus
During the coronavirus outbreak, running has become a popular choice for many people as we all look for ways to keep physically and mentally fit.
Many other forms of exercise are still on hold, including team sports and indoor sports, because of the potential risk of spreading the virus. However, running allows people to exercise with reduced risk from catching the virus because it’s outdoors and can be done solo and while ensuring social distancing rules are applied.
Here are the essential tips for running safely during the pandemic, both to protect your own health and that of others, too.
Keep your distance
Covid-19 is assumed to spread mainly through close contact from person to person. The best that you can do to stop the virus from spreading is by keeping a physical distance from others so that disease can’t be transmitted.
You should remain at least two metres distance from everyone else. The best way to avoid other people is to be considerate.
If you see people coming towards you, or you are running towards other people, look for ways or places to allow for a maximum distance between you when passing.
To further minimise the risk, you should run on your own, or with someone in your household, find areas that are as non-crowded as possible and run at times when you believe the trails will be quieter. for example, early morning, tea-time, later in the evening are all quieter times to go for a run.
Authorities in Paris had to ban the daytime outdoor exercise, because, despite the lockdown, people were not following distancing recommendations and the number of infected continued to rise.
Take it easy & recover
Your body’s immunity levels can be compromised when you over train so now is not the time to be pushing the limits physically. Ensure you warm up properly and also stay within your comfort zones. You can build up your distances, endurance and speed but don’t try to do this too quickly. Make sure you have adequate recovery, too.
In Scotland, stay local is still the advice of the government and this is to limit the spread of the virus to other areas. Mountain Rescue Teams are also requesting that people do not access the hills and mountains in case of accidents and emergencies.
So, when you go for a run, start from your home and stay within your local area.
Wear a face cover
It’s suggested that when you are running and because you are often breathing heavily, you’re more likely to spray droplets of breath around you. Fortunately, because you are in the outdoors where the risk of infection is lower than indoors and also moving fairly quickly the chances of spreading the infection are reduced.
However, if you are running where it is crowded a mask is a good idea because it decreases the risk of spreading the infection. It’s also a way to reduce your chances of someone else spraying their breath droplets s on you.
So, just like you wouldn’t leave your home without a reliable pair of running shoes, don’t go out for a run without taking a face mask.
This doesn’t mean that you have to wear it all the time unless that is an official requirement. If you’re running in non-crowded areas, you can put on your mask or when you see that someone is coming or you are running towards a group.
There are debates about what is sufficient as a face cover, with some saying you could use a buff or similar and others suggesting it needs to be a medically approved mask, but it stands to reason that some kind of cover is better than no cover.
Wash your hands
Touching gate posts, fences, handles, traffic light buttons etc when running could have the potential to spread the virus, or for you to pick up the infection.
If the contact is unavoidable, use a glove, sleeve, or elbow. You could wear lightweight gloves and then wash them as soon as you get home, or try to avoid touching anything when you run. Also, avoid touching your face with your hands when you are running
Make sure to wash your hands thoroughly the moment you’ve returned home.
Don’t ‘snot rocket’
This is an unpleasant topic but one worth mentioning. A snot rocket is the term for snorting snot from your nose. No one wants to be unintentionally sprayed by your snot and even if you do not do it near people, you might cause contamination on a surface, such as a gate. Just don’t do it.
If you have a runny nose, blow it into a tissue and dispose of the tissue as soon as you get home.
Don’t try to sweat it out
If you’re feeling like you’re going down with an illness, stay home. Now is not the time to do what some people call :sweating it out”.
Get some rest and do your best to boost your immunity with a well-balanced diet that’s high in vitamins C, B, D, magnesium and zinc.
Running outdoors is a great way to stay fit and healthy during the Coronavirus pandemic. For a safe run, follow the tips above and enjoy.