March 31, 2020 – Day two of Shelter in Place:

I set my alarm again…apparently maintaining a routine helps keep you sane. I set it for 6:00 am instead of my usual 4:15 wake-up time; I want to maintain a routine or whatever; not torture myself unnecessarily! So, I officially woke up at 6:00 am, turned off the alarm and proceeded to turn over in bed and continue sleeping because seriously, what was the point?! I woke up again at around 7:30 am ready to face the day, sort of. Exercise is very important to me; it’s been a big part of my life for over 20 years.

I’ve struggled with my weight for most of my youth and early young adult life, yoyoing between being slightly overweight to obesity and finally managed to reach and maintain a healthy weight in my early thirties. I was able to accomplish this difficult feat by adhering to a rigorous training schedule that includes swimming, biking and running, combined with gym workouts. Most of what I do, I do  outdoors, so being cooped up in a house is not just screwing up my training, it’s really messing with my mental well-being as well…and this is only day two!

Luckily for me, I have a pretty cool gym setup at home, so even though I might not be able to enjoy the outdoors anytime soon, I can at least still get some exercise in.

Today I decided to do a mini triathlon: 30 minutes on the stationary bike, followed by a 30-minute run/walk on the treadmill and 30 minutes on the rower. I fought the boredom of the bike by watching 2 Omeleto movies on YouTube. One of them about a pandemic…good way to scare myself into adhering to the lock-down order!

Mini Tri completed!

My lockdown logbook

Our worst fear has come to pass; the government has decided to upscale from quarantine to complete lockdown. No more leaving the house for takeout or going outdoors for a bit of fresh air while hiking, biking or swimming. We now have to stay at home and can only venture out twice a week for essential matters such as getting groceries, going to the doctor or to the pharmacy. It’s bad enough that I haven’t been able to work since the start of the quarantine, but not even leaving the house? This is going to be tough!  

But it’s all about looking at the positive side of things right? It’s debatable that there could be a positive side to thousands of people dying, but if we want to survive this crisis with our sanity intact, we will have to shelve that thought for a while and focus instead on what will help us get through it. In my case, my yard and makeshift home gym have become my saving grace.

I live with my parents and my two grown children (23 and 21) in what is called a ‘two-under-one-roof’. The house is literally split in two, with my parents living on one side and my kids and I on the other. We share a big yard that I used to complain about because of the maintenance and which I am now truly grateful for. I can’t imagine how families that reside in small apartment buildings with no balcony, or just a sliver of one, are coping with being cooped up all day long, day after day after day. So, no, I can’t complain but that doesn’t mean that it won’t be challenging to survive the lockdown. I’ve decided to keep a logbook. Writing a daily entry serves several purposes: It gives me something to do and I’m hoping it will also have a calming effect whenever I read it back, allowing me to see things from a different perspective; a sort of personal therapy session. I invite you to wander through the inner workings of my mind and experience the lockdown from my perspective…if you dare…


March 30, 2020 – Day one of Shelter in Place:

I turned off my alarm last night; there is no point in waking up at dawn, it will only make the day longer. Besides, if I can’t go biking or running outside, there is no need to ‘beat the sun’. And yet, somehow my alarm still went off at 4:15…apparently it didn’t get the memo!

Walking circles around the house

Luckily I was able to snooze a bit longer and finally woke up at 7:30. First order of business: laundry. Got that done Then…morning exercise, yippee-yay! We improvised our very own cross-fit-ish set-up (sans the crazy workouts, more like cross-fit for dummies) in the front yard and spent about 20 minutes switching from station to station. Cooldown was a 1km walk around the house (equal to 10 circles; I counted them!).

Imagining being on the road…

I still didn’t feel like I had burned off enough energy to get me through the day, so I went for a 30-minute spin on the stationary bike. I parked the bike on the porch outside to trick my mind into thinking I was out on the streets. It almost worked too, until it hit me that birds were doing deliberate fly-bys, mocking my pathetic attempt at pretending to be free like them. Still, I trudged on to complete the 30 minutes I had set myself to do.

It felt more like an hour, but I did it. Feeling totally accomplished, exhausted and super sweaty I took a shower, then I made the mistake of checking my watch…it was only 10:30 in the morning!