Being quarantined during the COVID-19 pandemic has many people feeling detached and restricted. Everyone is looking for safe ways to get out of the house, see other people, and breathe fresh air. With the summer heat also comes the urge to spend as much time outdoors as possible to soak up plenty of sun and fun.
While social distancing is the new normal, there are still plenty of ways to explore your environment safely. Consider one or more of these seven activities you could try to pass the time during the pandemic:
Hike and Bike
Long walks are an easy way to get out of the house and break your usual routine. All you need are quality walking shoes or sneakers that fit correctly. Hiking takes walking up a few notches for an added dose of fitness and exploration. Hike trails and explore local state parks to view wildlife up-close and remember to bring a camera to capture all the action.
If you’re ready for a higher level of fitness and enjoyment, it’s time to get a bike. Whether you pedal or choose a motorcycle, it’s a fast and easy way to get out of quarantine for a while to see the world around you.
Take a few minutes to find a vehicle today, and you could be riding around tomorrow.
Farmers’ Markets and Picnics
Farmers’ markets and picnics are healthy hand-in-hand companions that can also get you out of quarantine. Visit farmers’ markets wearing a mask and remain socially distant from other shoppers, leaving about 6 feet between you. Shop around for healthy produce that supports your immune system and can be used to make delicious picnic dishes.
Pack up your favorites and plan a picnic at the local park. If you want to avoid others, you can also set up a picnic blanket in your backyard. Either way, it makes eating a lot more pleasant when you dine outdoors.
Plant a Garden
If you don’t live near any farmers’ markets, you can plant your garden to get healthy produce and improve your diet. Gardening is an excellent way to spend time outdoors and do something productive. Start a simple garden and tend it each day to get time outside.
Gardening is a terrific exercise, and the rewards can be incredible. Imagine harvesting your tomatoes, onions, peppers, and fruits to use in delicious dishes you make at home. Add herbs to your garden to spice up your salads, soups, and barbecued foods. Use the goodies from your garden to host a small backyard barbecue with social distancing.
Decades ago, everyone headed to the drive-in movie theater for affordable fun. People packed themselves into a car to watch a movie and munch on their favorite snacks in complete privacy. While many of these theaters closed in the past 20 years, drive-in movies are coming back.
Many large parking lots and venues are being transformed into drive-in theaters showing your favorite old movies and new concerts being recorded during the pandemic. Take time out to experience a blast from the past by viewing a drive-in movie during the pandemic.
Outdoor Dining at a Local Restaurant
Many neighborhood businesses are struggling to remain open after the days of loss during the pandemic. Quarantining meant fewer people were taking food out, and nobody was able to eat in restaurants. Now eateries are slowly opening up, offering outdoor dining options with social distancing.
Most patrons are required to wear a mask when walking through public areas to the tables and visit the restroom. The masks are removed while dining and social distancing.
Besides adding new menu items to your current diet, dining out helps support local businesses and keep the economy moving forward. Plus, dining out feels great after most people have been cooking at home for months.
Give yourself a well-deserved break by eating outdoors at your favorite restaurant.
Create a Home Gym
Many fitness enthusiasts are frustrated by the fact public gyms have been closed for months. Trying to work out at home can be challenging, especially when you are accustomed to using specific equipment at a gym. Changing your fitness routine is inevitable as gyms continue to be required to keep their doors closed. However, you can create a home gym in your backyard, on the deck, or in your house.
Working out in the fresh air feels fantastic, and gives you a reason to get outside and move. With other people also buying gym equipment, often these items are sold out for weeks. Be creative and use a variety of unique things to create your gym. From stairs to a doorway to a thick rope, there are many ways to work out at home without breaking the bank.
For example, soup cans can be used as free weights before opening them to have a healthy lunch or dinner!
Grab a Camera and Go
Often we forget to explore our neighborhoods as we pursue national and international travel options. With travel being restricted, now is the best time to learn more about your local region. Grab a camera, get off the couch, and start walking around the area to explore hidden gems. Look around carefully as you travel through your neighborhood to discover hidden paths, secret parks, and remote shops located off the main roads.
Your camera can memorialize all of these discoveries, so you remember where to go. From obscure museums to private art collections, you’ll be amazed at what you can discover just a few blocks away from where you live.
Quarantining has been difficult for everyone, making people feel frustrated and alone. With the summer sun comes plenty of opportunities to get outdoors and have fun. Be creative, and keep the rules of social distancing in mind as you plan exciting excursions that are sure to make life better. From outdoor picnics and barbecues to biking and hiking, there are endless discoveries to make about the world around you. We all will be learning how to assimilate into a new normal during the unsure days ahead.