12 outdoor activities to get out of the house during the coronavirus pandemic

That’s why SELF editor Casey Gueren has made it a point to try less traveled routes on her regular walks.

“I’m basically playing a game of Frogger, where I walk around anywhere that looks interesting and doesn’t have anyone in the way,” she says. “I ended up seeing beautiful and fascinating parts of my neighborhood that I would never have seen otherwise because I always stayed in the parks right in front of my apartment, which are too crowded most weekends to that I feel calm walking around there.”

SELF production assistant Lisa Brown uses a similar tactic whenever she has to run errands, such as going to the grocery store.

“It helps my mood a lot, especially since I’m indoors all the time, and it turns boring errands into enjoyable errands,” she says. “And all the side streets have the most picturesque houses and buildings that make for a peaceful stroll.”

5. Get out your jump rope.

If you even have a little space outdoors, jumping rope can be a great option for an outdoor workout. Suspended wooden decks are great surfaces for cushioning joints, but you can also invest in a gym mat to put on harder surfaces like concrete, as SELF recently reported.

When jumping, be sure to initiate the rope movement from your wrists, not your shoulders, engage your core, and land on your toes rather than your heels. Try jumping just an inch or two off the ground to improve your ankle stability.

Do you want to try? Try jump rope strength training, jump rope HIIT training and jump rope endurance training here. All of these fun options take less than 20 minutes.

6. Take pictures.

SELF social media manager Frances Dumlao uses her time away to fuel her creativity. She brings her camera and looks for beautiful flowers.

“I live in a city and rarely come across greenery during most times of the year. In the spring however, the city blooms with tulips, daffodils, magnolias and cherry blossoms,” she says. It’s a good reminder for me to ‘smell the roses’ – that there are still little things to be grateful for in this strange time. I also share my flower photos on social media, so others can find some joy in it too.

7. Grow food.

The act of gardening can be super relaxing, and as a bonus, you could walk away with some delicious and free fruit, veg, or herbs for your toil.

SELF reader Melissa Alfano considers gardening one of her favorite outdoor activities for her whole family.

“We teach our preschooler about plants, so it’s fun, relaxing, and educational,” she says.

8. Run some stairs.

If running isn’t your thing, you can still do some intense cardio training outdoors, especially if you live near stairs.

NASM-certified personal trainer and barre instructor Lauren Leavell walks up and down the stairs at her local train station as part of a HIIT workout.