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5 Ways Strava Can Help You Stay Active at Home

How to exercise during the coronavirus pandemic

Self-quarantining and social distancing in light of the Coronavirus pandemic have both caused dramatic changes in the daily lives of athletes around the world. We’re all looking for ways to maintain some semblance of our normal routines by staying active. But for athletes who are being told to stay in their homes, that gets even more challenging. With new and unexpected challenges entering our lives (kids at home 24/7, rationing toilet paper) along with races being canceled or postponed – we’ve got enough stress without worrying about our fitness. Now is a great time to mix it up and focus on building a solid foundation for when you are able to return to your regular training and racing again. So, here are five ways that you can get a workout (and share it to Strava) without leaving home.

1. Make a manual upload

You can manually add an activity to Strava and choose from any of their 32 different activity types. So, you can share your savasana, get kudos for your crunches and keep your log of activities accurate even in these unprecedented times. But why stop there? You can add a manual workout for all kinds of ways you’re staying active: extreme gardening, a really strenuous house cleaning session or maybe a video conference planking competition. The only limit is your imagination (and your local regulations).

KOM-crusher Phil Gaimon is down with manual activities and he’s used them to record some of his yoga sessions.

Check out this support article for more details on adding a manual activity.

2. Use an indoor cycling trainer

Cyclists are accustomed to riding indoors during the winter, but many are now having to bust out their trainers even while the sun is shining. An indoor trainer is an easy way to convert a bicycle you already own into a piece of stationary exercise equipment. You can get an old-school trainer and record your ride using sensors on the bike, like a speed sensor on the rear wheel or a power meter. You could even just use a heart rate monitor (more on that later). Or you can get a smart trainer that has built-in sensors. Some can even adjust the resistance to simulate a climb or make sure you aren’t soft pedaling your intervals. You’ll be able to sync your rides with Strava using a cycling computer or one of a number of apps that connect with Strava and provide extra motivation, like TrainerRoad, Zwift or The Sufferfest.

Many pro racers are showing up to race on virtual cycling platforms. Real world classic’s winner Mathieu van der Poel recently took part in the Ronde van Zwift, the first of a series of virtual classic’s the brand is hosting. Check out his ride.

3. Upload a heart rate only workout

Many newer fitness watches, like those from Garmin, Suunto and Polar, will allow you to record a workout without GPS, while still capturing heart rate data. If you don’t already own a device, you can connect a heart rate monitor to your phone and sync a GPS-less workout to Strava with the Wahoo app. Recording your heart rate during an intense cardio routine will let you see how hard you went and you can even compare the Relative Effort of your indoor workouts to what you might usually get outside. Pull up an old Richard Simmons video and you might even have a higher score than your usual jogs!

Cory Richards, who summited Everest without oxygen, has been using heart rate only activities to record his strength training workouts while his climbing trips are on hold.

4. Cross train with one of our partner apps

Ready to mix up your routine? You can download an app that will guide you through a workout and then automatically create a Strava activity. There are more apps that sync with Strava than there are boutique fitness studios in San Francisco. You can get yoga from Glo, core routines from Fitbod or cardio workouts with Aaptiv – and many of them are offering free trials during this period. Learn more here.

5. Run or ride around your garden

Just because you can’t leave home doesn’t mean you can’t go for a run or a ride outside – if your yard (or driveway or balcony) is big enough. You could do some tiny laps for an hour, but we’ve seen some athletes taking this to the extreme. This mountain biker did 100 kilometers around his yard – it looks like the grass suffered as much as he did.

Hopefully this sparks your motivation and gives you some ideas on how to stay active while helping to fight the spread of COVID-19. If you’re looking for some extra accountability, join their SOLOdarity challenge and commit to moving for 20 minutes a day. Have you found a fun and unique way to stay active at home? Show them your new routine by tagging @Strava and using #SOLOdarity!

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