amongst books

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Tuesday, April 21, 2020

Ottawa, April 21, 2020 - Anxiety Alleviation Through Fitness


One of the consequences of the shutdown was that I had to stop going to my fitness classes at Carleton University, which had been helping to ease my perimenopausal anxiety. I had two great months of classes: 50s Stretch and Strength, Aquafit and Tai Chi. I loved everything about the experience, from the bus ride to Carleton, the chats with fellow participants in the classes and afterwards over coffee. My last class was on Wednesday, March 11 and I have been missing it greatly.

My Tai Chi instructor began to do free meditation sessions via Zoom. I admit that I don’t like Zoom, I don’t like seeing myself on live video and I’m not that keen on seeing others that way either. I have always resisted having conversations on Skype, which to me made people look like cartoon characters and all the fumbling around with technology made it seem like a huge waste of time to me. Zoom is better for a lot of reasons, but it’s still very much a weird experience; however I couldn’t resist the opportunity to take part in these meditation sessions, which are so grounding and help to relieve my anxiety. That started about three weeks ago.

This week, Carleton Athletics has begun to offer fitness classes via Zoom. My Stretch and Strength class is one of the classes offered. Yesterday I had the great pleasure of doing the workout again. I still don’t like Zoom. Ok, I loathe Zoom, but I’m willing to put up with it if it means I can have a regular and guided exercise routine again. I just wish there was a way to mute other people’s video like one can with the audio. If I had my way, I would see only the instructor.

Before the class I had my usual bout of anxiety, worrying about this and that. After the class, I felt so much better. I didn’t feel anxious at all afterwards. One hour of dynamic and static exercise, weights, squats, planks etc…it was exactly what I needed. The classes are on Monday and Friday mornings. There are other classes too, including Pilates and Yoga. These are for Senior Ravens, such as I, and staff and students.

They also have some pre-recorded fitness classes which are available to anyone.

I really appreciate the generosity and kindness I’ve experienced through Carleton Athletics from the start. Once the Covid-19 shutdown has been lifted, I look forward to a return to in person classes again. And right now, when my anxiety has been especially hard to control, I really need this.

How are you coping with anxiety at this time?

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