Thirty-six percent of Americans report they've gained weight during the COVID-19 crisis — an average of 12.5 pounds, according to one survey. But other bodily changes may be harder to notice: muscle loss and, with it, a loss of innate balance, says Rebecca Seguin-Fowler, an associate professor at Texas A&M University. So, as you prepare to resume your everyday routines, be careful: You may not have the same balance and agility you had just a year ago. To rebuild your strength and balance, try these exercises. Do two sets of 10 to 15 repetitions. As you get stronger, reduce the number of repetitions to eight and use heavier weights.
Step 1: Stand with your feet hip-width apart and hands on your hips.
Step 2: Step back with your right foot; bend both legs until your right knee almost touches the floor and your left knee forms a right angle. Now push up from your feet to straighten your legs.
Step 3: Lower back down again and repeat 10 to 15 times. Then switch to your other foot.
Step 1: Stand on the lowest step of a set of stairs and hold on to the railing.
Step 2: Scooch your feet back so your weight is on the balls of your feet and your heels are hanging off the step. Slowly push up as far as you can onto the balls of your feet while counting to four. Pause, then slowly lower your heels and drop them slightly below the step. Pause, then repeat.
Biceps curl to overhead press
Step 1: With your arms hanging at your sides, hold a light weight in each hand. Rotate your forearms so your palms are facing forward. Be sure your feet are shoulder-width apart.