Getting Outdoors During the Coronavirus
This week we are giving away our book “100 Nature Walks” to anyone for free here on our website. However, for many the nature walk itself has been brought into question. It does not need to be. Nature can be enjoyed from a window, balcony or backyard. And, contrary to popular belief, a “lockdown” does not mean you need to forgo your daily nature walk. It may just mean you do it in a different manner.
Here are what some of the cities on lockdown are advising people to do:
Wisdom gleaned from the Wall Street Journal on March 21, 2020, in summary, says:
- In New York all businesses that are non-essential must shut down and non-essential gatherings of any size are banned. However “in public, people must keep at least six feet away from each other.”
- In California Gov. Newsom has ordered everyone to stay home except to get food, care for a relative or friend, obtain health care, or go to an “essential job”. However, people outside are told to keep at least 6 feet of distance from each other. Talking a walk in the park is not yet banned.
- In Illinois Gov. J.B Pritzker commanded residents to stay at home, leaving only for essential travel and activities such as health and safety reasons, getting supplies and caring for others. And although all public amusements are closed to the public, nature walks are not. Gatherings of 10 or more people are banned.
Even under these harsh guidelines one can still conduct a short nature walk by doing the following:
- Make sure your nature walk does not have more than the recommended of people “gathering”.
- Take your nature walk TO the store to get supplies instead of taking the car.
- A nature walk IS a health reason, so as long as you are keeping your distance, getting out into nature is healthy.
- If you are still unsure or uncomfortable, an exploration of your backyard with a magnifying glass or macro lens will reveal some magical things! And the best part? They change each day as spring emerges!
Online news source Bustle, shares the following wisdom, “If you’re not in quarantine, meaning actively watching for symptoms to develop, or in isolation, a bit of activity outdoors is a good idea. “You want to maintain activity and exercise — just don’t go for a walk in a dense, crowded area,” Dr. Janette Nesheiwat M.D., a family and ER doctor, tells Bustle. Research shows that green spaces can aid mental health, with studies demonstrating that everybody from children to the elderly experience mental health boosts from time spent outdoors in nature. Going for a walk might be particularly helpful if you’re experiencing adverse mental health symptoms as a result of being cooped up.” (You can read their full article HERE)
If you have been exposed to someone with coronavirus or do not have natural an un-crowded place to walk in, or are in a place that has gone into lockdown then some ideas for using the “100 Days of Nature Walks” are below:
- Instead of doing the projects as actual nature walks observe out the window each day and do the activities
- Watch a different garden live-stream every day or nature walk live-stream every day to do the suggested activities
- Be sure to open windows around the home as often as possible.
- A good SPACE CLEARING might be a good way to start the week. See our SPACE CLEARING instructions HERE.
- Bring nature INSIDE. Start a nature table or expand one you already have. Add sand, water, sticks, shells, pretty rocks, and more to the nature table. Take time each day to arrange it in different ways and add things to it. Don’t have items from nature? Put a call out on social media for someone to send them. What a fun thing it would be to share my favorite rocks or shells to bring joy to someone’s home!
And if you are following what the White House is saying during this time (some are, some aren’t – both have good reasons), their guidelines for the 15-day period that started last week advise avoiding “discretionary travel, shopping trips and social visits,” as well as “social gatherings in groups of more than 10 people.” But outdoor exercise is not on the list.
Share your own ideas below in the comments. How are you “getting outside” during the coronavirus shutdowns/lockdowns?