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Easy does it: How to emerge from a COVID winter

After a long winter of restrictions, self-isolation and inactivity, many are looking to the coming spring and summer months with renewed optimism – especially since the COVID-19 vaccine is becoming available to more people. Romelle Maloney, MD, Ob-Gyn, regional medical director, Northeast Medical Group (NEMG), with offices in Stamford, Greenwich and Purchase, says this is the perfect time to reconnect with your primary care physician.

“So many of us have spent these winter months sitting indoors and not getting very much physical activity,” Dr. Maloney explained. “That can have an impact on your health. Your doctor can perform an assessment of your general health and provide guidance for easing back into a healthy lifestyle.”

The warmer weather on the horizon is expected to bring an influx of people heading outside for sport and recreation. Dr. Maloney stresses that everyone from weekend warriors to seasoned enthusiasts should ease into their activity of choice.

“We see it all the time,” Dr. Maloney said. “People get excited and jump right into these activities. That’s when we see muscle and orthopedic injuries. If you haven’t been active over the past several months, you should take it slow. If you’re a runner, for example, start with a short jog. Don’t lead with a 10K because you’ll end up back on your couch waiting for an injury to heal.”

Dr. Maloney offers her top tips to get back to a healthy, active lifestyle:

  1. Check in with your NEMG primary care doctor. All NEMG locations provide the safest environment possible, especially for those considered at higher risk for COVID-19. Many exams can be conducted remotely using telehealth, so patients may also consider scheduling a video visit with their doctor. Staff can help patients set up their devices prior to a virtual visit.
  2. Set simple, realistic goals. Gradually adjust your activity as needed.
  3. Celebrate your progress with healthy choices along the way.

“Your primary care physician should be your first stop for health problems or concerns,” Dr. Maloney said. “Our goal is to work with you and understand your healthcare needs so we can provide effective, coordinated care.”

Looking for an NEMG primary care specialist? Use our online Find A Doctor feature.