Health in pandemic: How indoor turned outside for operating and driving teams | Gurgaon Information

Gurgaon: Barriers around the world were toughest to keep people from doing even basic exercises confined to the four walls of their homes. For the riders, runners and walkers of Gurgaon, the challenge was to stay fit and active as safely as possible. When Covid turned the rituals and rhythms of life upside down, the interiors became their exteriors.
“The first question that came to mind was: What can we do and how do we keep our fitness?” Siddarth Choudhary recalls those days in the first half of 2020. The founder of Gurgaon Road Runners (GRR ), Choudhary, believed at the time that it was impossible to keep a fitness regime until you were on the road or on the track.
But while the GRR family’s life has thrown a curveball, they have been more than ready to catch it. And Choudhary, always the optimist, saw the glass half full. “Since I was leading a group, I thought let’s work on optimizing body fat because we can’t run outside. And how you do that is to control your diet, so I started working on a lot of diet plans, ”he said. In addition to monitoring diet, members focused on high-intensity interval training like pushups and squats.
“There were a lot of things we could do to get around the fact that we were inside, and we did it wonderfully – in fact, people were getting into their best shape,” reveals Choudhary, happily adding that even he himself has never felt better.
But it wasn’t just about sticking to an activity that had become a pleasant distraction over the years. It was also about offering moral support to friends and their families affected by the virus. That’s what the Let’s Walk Gurgaon (LWG) folks tried when the great outdoors was banned. “Ultimately, we are a community and there is this bond between us. At that time we knew families affected by Covid and were in contact with them, ”said Arvind Dimri, a long-time and loyal LWG man.
“There were some of us who lived alone and in fact one of our members got the virus. She was pretty serious, but we were able to take her to the hospital and admit her. ”Dimri also assumed that seniors and people living alone would need additional help during the lockdown. When pharmacists were overwhelmed with requests for medication, he and his passengers helped by volunteering and delivering home everything they needed.
Fight the itching
Nevertheless, there was always a longing to put on running or hiking shoes, to take out the bike. “Because of the pandemic, we weren’t allowed to leave the house, we weren’t allowed to go for a walk or forget to cycle,” recalls Ela Ghose, a member of SpinLife, a Delhi-NCR cycling collective.
Suddenly a device became a necessity. “Many of us have bought a bicycle trainer, a device that you can get on your bike and ride inside,” explains Ghose. “You can even ride routes around the world with the more challenging ones, with your bike’s resistance automatically increasing as you“ climb ”a hill. There is also a very popular indoor exercise program called Zwift, and many of us started Zwifting together. These are virtual group trips where people train together from home. ”
The result was that a place of home comfort was making the most of outdoor leisure time. “Everyone who wanted to get fitter loved the plans,” says Choudhary. “Now when I tell people to train on site, they say, ‘If we get 99% of the same result, we would prefer to go online and have live virtual sessions.”
Many SpinLifers are now in great physical shape. “People actually improved their fitness dramatically during this time – even though I wasn’t one of them!” Admits Ghose. “You did incredibly well and got stronger. And when they finally got back on the road, they were supercharged! ”
Step by step back
In August, Gurgaon Road Runners resumed outdoor activities while also complying with government safety regulations, ensuring social distancing and performing thermal checks at larger gatherings. The masks are off while running, but put on again when the group is together for a stretching session, for example.
GRR is currently running virtual runs, but it will be a while before the marathons for which the group is known to take place. “We have waited 18 months and can wait a few more months. Let things settle down properly, ”says Choudhary.
The regular guests of the LWG have been gathering on Saturdays at 5 a.m. at a predetermined location since September, but on one condition: only fully vaccinated members can take part. “, Emphasizes Dimri.
Out of habit, many cyclists wear bandanas that also serve as masks. And Ajeet Pandey of Pedalyatri, a popular NCR group for dedicated pedal cyclists, believes biking is the safest outdoor activity because it’s best for the practice of physical distancing. “It’s very easy to follow the protocols on trails because you can keep your distance even when riding in groups,” he says.
It was certainly a learning experience, albeit a sobering one, from which many positive things can be derived. Dimri doesn’t take things lightly, but feels relaxed in the here and now. And he speaks for others in the city for whom physical well-being equals psychological well-being. You now know that indoors is just as good as outdoors for keeping fit and healthy.

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