Health experts are saying that people should wear masks if they head out in public. Wearing a mask helps prevent the spread of the coronavirus, since people infected with COVID-19 may not show symptoms.
However, wearing a mask while out at the gym can lead to other kinds of issues. People may struggle to breathe as they run on the treadmill, and wearing a mask may leave fitness-buffs feeling exhausted after a workout.
Dr. Mark Rasnake with UT Medical Center said that it's extra-important for people to listen to their bodies while they work out if they're wearing a mask. Struggling to breathe and gasping for air can lead to other issues while working out.
People struggling to breathe during a workout should sit down and rest while they catch their breath. It can be especially challenging for older adults to wear a mask while working out.
Instead of going to the gym for a workout, Rasnake said people can head to a greenway or a park instead. People may not need to wear a mask if they do their workouts outside since there's room to put at least 6 feet between themselves and others.
Inside a gym, experts only recommend removing masks if there's enough room to stay at least 12 feet apart. Since indoor air doesn't circulate as well as it does outside, they recommend staying farther apart.
And if going to the gym makes people feel uncomfortable, there are other ways to stay active. People can go outside for walks or runs, taking advantage of Knoxville's extensive amounts of greenways.
People can even walk around in circles around the living room. As long as you're moving around, you're being active. It doesn't matter whether it's in a gym, and you don't need a mask to work out at home!