She says, “If you could put exercise in a pill, it would have the effects of at least 14 different types of medications we prescribe for multiple ailments!”


Deemer’s statement is not far-fetched. The authors of an article in the British Journal of Pharmacology state, “Exercise is so beneficial for health that it should be considered as a drug.”


Moving Forward In a Pandemic


Deemer emphasizes that everyone should be following basic hygiene protocols when going out in public. She labels them as “the three Ws”:


  1. Watching our distance,
  2. Wearing our masks, and
  3. Washing our hands.


As for visiting a gym, “The risk is overall low,” says Deemer. “If thorough safety protocols are being enacted.”


Deemer brings us to another point we’d like to make.


We’re noticing a trend in our discussions with medical experts, explicitly relating to risk mitigation guidelines. Health club guidelines from both Robert Sallis, M.D., and Greg Degnan, M.D., are almost identical to Deemer’s, including:


  • Maintaining at least 6 feet of distance between patrons while exercising,
  • Staff wearing masks at all times, and patrons wearing masks when not engaging in vigorous activity, and
  • Diligent cleaning and disinfecting measures.


Even more compelling, health clubs follow these protocols—and have been for months in some states—yet, the public’s perception of these facilities is still not optimistic. However, we can’t continue to live in isolation and wait for a vaccine to bring life back to “normal.”


Deemer’s advice for everyone—and what she follows herself—is, “If you are not having symptoms, have not had recent known exposure, and you are practicing the three W’s diligently, it is best for your overall health to be physically active and live life as normally as possible.”


She adds, “Continue to move, engage in relationships, get good sleep, practice self-care, and eat a well-rounded, ‘plant-strong’ diet.”