Lost incentive to exercise with gyms closed? Take a walk, USF instructor advises

The "safer-at-home" orders have had an unintended consequence as people can't go to the gym or fitness centers and may have lost that incentive to exercise.

"Get up, take a walk!" said Mo Chiodini, instructor of exercise sciences at the University of South Florida. "You're helping your heart; you're helping your muscles."

She said exercise is the best medicine you can take. "Exercise and movement are as great or better than most of the drugs out there," Chiodini explained.

For residents at home, she said it’s important moving more intentionally.

RELATED Workouts go virtual as social distancing becomes the norm

Working from home combined with binge-watching television and video entertainment means a lot of sitting in place.

"Sitting is the new smoking!" cautioned Chiodini, "We're losing muscle mass; we're losing flexibility!"

But simply going outside for a walk in the neighborhood is a great way to get something positive started.

"Start low and go slow," advised Chiodini, "Start with a tiny bit and increase (distance). Get outdoors, walk down the street, say hello to your neighbors," she encouraged.

Chiodini recommends starting an exercise routine now, so it can continue into the future.

Map of known COVID-19 cases:

MOBILE APP USERS: Click here for map