Hey, you. Yes YOU! How's it going? You're the first person we've talked to this morning too. And as weird a new reality as this is, we're here to help keep you happy and active. So let's start with making the best of our bodies and give you something to entertain the virtual mothballs collecting around that virtual diary of yours. Bring the outdoors in, with isolation-friendly streamable forms of exercise, or use your once a day trip outdoors to make a runner of yourself. We're going to go ahead and commit to both.
Bit of news. You can now make it to the studio and/or gym without being late for work. Get top trainers beamed via the intermaweb direct to the space formerly known as your living room. And by choosing a Birmingham studio, you're supporting your local community. Nice, right?
DANCE IT OUT
From salsa, to ballet, to a totally ace sounding class called Vogue, DanceXchange is sharing a series of totally free classes that are open to all levels and suitable for total beginners. Join DX's regular teachers on Instagram Live or take in the class at your own speed in the 24 hours following the 30-minuter. Jason Andrew Guest is leading the strut at 8pm tonight. Full timetable
SWEAT IT OUT
Complete with specially adapted, trainer-led, daily workouts, functional fitness is coming to your house. F45's gone virtual, replacing resistance equipment with household items. Join one of five trainers live from their pads at 7.30am each morning via a special Facebook group, or take part at a time that suits you later in the day. Access to the classes, as well as advice on nutrition and well-being during this batshit time is £2 a day. And it's exactly the right price for NHS staff — free. To sign up or for more info, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
BOUNCE IT OUT
The Active Wellbeing Society is an organisation created to enable communities to get moving together. They've put as many of the activities they usually endorse and support online as per this neat little schedule. There's a drum and bass work out at 6pm Mondays, something specifically for los niños every single day (think street dance and magic skills), plus tai-chi, Zumba and everything in between. The classes are streamed via the team's Facebook page and are free.
CHILL IT OUT
From tomorrow (Friday), Barefoot's Kings Heath and Harborne studios will be working from your home, with classes from some studio faves. It's £5 a sesh, which you can view and take part in along with your fellow yogis at set times. Join Jon Moult at 7pm on Friday or Dave Glover to start your Sunday at 9am. As well as getting a high quality pre-recorded 45-minute sesh, there'll be an online chat via which your teacher will intro the class live and be available to chat post-yoga. More sessions to follow. Book here. And namaste y'all.
RUN BRUM (RESPONSIBLY)
Cards on the table, let's play solitaire! Hang on, let's try that again. Cards on the table, running is around about our least favourite form of exercise. But exercise is good and — if you venture out alone, keeping away from other folk — fresh air is as well. So we're finally doing it. We're taking up running. And here are the routes our ill-trained legs are aiming at, courtesy of Run Brum Crew's Hannah Green, who's been running less than two years, and is now right proper into it. Two metres apart minimum people, them's the rules.
2.5KM: THE SAREHOLE SHORTY
If you are a total beginner, start slowly — round the block is fine — now is not the time for injuries. And when you do feel like stretching your legs a little further, loop around Moseley Bog and the parkland behind Sarehole Mill, which is part of Shire Country Park — open to the public and full of wide-open space. And though Sarehole's grounds are currently closed, its bakehouse has transformed into a community shop, with essentials like pasta, canned goods, and bread, natch. Accessible from the front of the mill. Route
5KM: THE VALE
Greenery and space is in happily plentiful supply around this here city. You don't need us to tell you about Cannon Hill Park, but what about hitting the grounds around the University of Birmingham's main set of halls, known as The Vale? The loop is accessible care of canal paths and your legs, from town, the JQ, Edgbaston, Harborne, Bournville and Selly Oak. Route
10KM: LOOP THE LOOP
If you're a fit and healthy person, getting to 10km in the next few months is pretty darned realistic. Pick this circuit up wherever suits you — it's mapped to start and end at the main Jewellery Quarter car park. Heading down to the canal at Summer Row Bridge you'll snake up to Icknield Port Loop via The Arena and The Distilery before heading to the reservoir. Lap it and head back to town or wherever home might be for you. Route
Laghi's is here for you. Offering takeaway or delivery, they've put together a special menu with exactly the right amount of pasta and pizza on it. Times & bookings
The Symphony Hall's got Facebook Watch Parties, with their weekly Jazzlines concerts moving online and performers like BBC Young Musician winner, Lauren Zhang, available to view from 5pm on March 30.
Clap for our carers at 8pm today. From your window, balcony (get you), or front door, applaud the NHS staff and key workers that are keeping the country going.
“My gran started walking five miles a day when she was sixty. She's ninety-seven now, and we don't know where the heck she is.”
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