At-home quarantine workouts

Students and staff share what motivates them to exercise during the COVID-19 pandemic


Photo used with permission from Arushi Tyagi.

Junior Arushi Tyagi holds a plank position during her daily workout in her house.

Prisha Tiwari, Staff Writer

As the quarantine stretches into its seventh month, many students and faculty continue to stay active despite restrictions. Junior Miyabi Kadowaki decided to establish goals, such as getting more muscle and toned legs for her body, and implementing workouts into her daily schedule. 

“I thought it was a good time to work on myself and work on my health,” Kadowaki said. “So I started working out to stay in shape. I feel like at this point, [working out] [is], ingrained into my life. If I don’t go outside on a run or if I don’t do a workout or something, my body craves it.”

To motivate herself, Kadowaki found it best to work out with her close friends, especially her Cheer captain, senior Elizabeth Lee. Similarly, Varsity Boys Volleyball member and senior Joshua Ho says he was able to commit to working out by receiving support from his volleyball teammates and by setting goals to improve his strength and speed by the next season. 

“What helps [me] the most [with working out] is find[ing] a group of people that can motivate each other,” Ho said. “I can find that with my team, [because] we want to all get better with each other and work out together. We help each other become better people and better athletes.”

After the school closures in March, Ho and his team were required to participate in virtual conditioning meetings in which the team worked through different sets of exercises. To establish workout routines, Ho practiced a combination of these volleyball conditioning exercises, along with online workouts from YouTube, such as following the fitness Youtuber Chloe Ting. However, after trying out Ting’s workouts, Ho felt they weren’t helpful in allowing him to achieve speed and strength. But Ting’s 30 day shred and ab workouts proved helpful for varsity Badminton player and junior Arushi Tyagi.

“During the first month of quarantine I did no physical activity and was just enjoying the laid back life,” Tyagi said. “I was recommended Chloe Ting by many and I liked the way there were plans for a specific amount of days to reach a certain goal so this helped me motivate myself to workout every day and stay committed.”

Tyagi started working out at home because her parents thought Badminton was taking away from academic time. With quarantine adding many free hours to her days, Tyagi’s parent’s decided that the only way she could continue practicing Badminton was to workout every day to show her commitment. 

“I had to come up with some kind of ultimatum [for my parents] that would show that I really want to work out,” Tyagi said. “I [saw] [that] a lot of people who constantly went to practice were doing a lot better or are getting better and that was my motivation.”

Ho believes that establishing physical activity into his day wasn’t just to lose weight or gain strength, but it was also beneficial in terms of mental health, such as stress relief and relaxation.

“At the end of the school year when we were in quarantine, working out helped me be happier,” Ho said. “It was really sad to be stuck inside all day and working out gave me an outlet to relieve some stress. [When] we were in actual school, my whole day was super busy with a ton of classes and volleyball — [school] felt very stressful. But after quarantine started, it was really easy for me to like working out every day since I had the time to do that and that was really nice to have the time to spend on myself and to focus on myself.”

Like Ho, Spanish teacher and Department Lead Molly Guadiamos was able to use exercising and working out in the evenings to spend more time with her daughters and focus on family. Guadiamos and her family explored many different physical activities, such as biking and running. 

“It has been great to be able to work out with my daughters,” Guadiamos said.” It makes it a lot more fun than just working out by yourself; otherwise, I have to [do so individually]. We take turns creating the workouts and it’s good to have a buddy who also helps keep you accountable.”

Tyagi thinks at the start of establishing a workout routine that it may be difficult to motivate yourself to keep going, but she says staying consistent is worth it in the end. 

“Find what motivates you so that you continue it and you don’t stop halfway through,” Tyagi said. “Set smaller goals, smaller milestones, rather than a big goal so that you feel accomplished every time that you reach a small milestone. No matter what, you would have made some progress and however small it is — at least it is something.”