IEA Affiliate Week: Taking Care of Yourself, Even Outdoors, Can be a Challenge by Kyle Hannon

Kyle Hannon
Kyle Hannon

Hope you are staying well. I’m Kyle Hannon from Filibuster Press, an Indiana Evaluation Association member, and I’m working hard to avoid pandemic illness while providing content to organizations that need it.  In this new abnormal of working during a pandemic, it has become increasingly important to stay healthy. But it has also become more difficult to stay healthy because we are trying to stay socially distant.

In educating us about the spread and impact of the COVID-19 virus, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) explains that people with underlying medical conditions are at a higher risk for severe illness from the disease. One of the underlying medical conditions is obesity.

So, sitting around a computer all day, when our only activity is clicking between Zoom meetings, is not good for us. The CDC advises that staying active is one of the best ways to keep our bodies and minds healthy. Get out there and enjoy nature. Take a walk. Take a run. Ride a bike.

But wait. As soon as you step onto a trail, you are going to discover that many other people had the same idea.

In a recent webinar, The Rails to Trails Conservancy reported that trail use increased 200% due to the pandemic. In Indiana, where I live, the Department of Natural Resources reported that trail use in March more than doubled over last year.

Hiking trails can be narrow, making a 6-foot social distance impossible. Popular recreational trails for walking, running, and biking can also make safe social distance challenging. One of my friends refers to it as playing “Frogger,” like the old video game.

When you can’t stay distant, say the federal, state, and local guidelines, wear a mask. Running is hard enough without a face covering. I see a few people on the trail with masks. Many have no face coverings at all. But some have found the same solution I use.

Cool Trick:

I wear a bandanna around my neck. If I approach people, I pull it up over my mouth and nose. I may look like I’m going to rob a stagecoach, but I believe it helps. And I think other people appreciate it.

Rad Resource:

Bandana for not, if you want to run, Runners World offers these tips for avoiding virus spread.  

Stay safe and stay healthy.

The American Evaluation Association is celebrating Indiana Evaluation Association (IEA) Affiliate Week. The contributions all this week to aea365 come from IEA members. Do you have questions, concerns, kudos, or content to extend this aea365 contribution? Please add them in the comments section for this post on the aea365 webpage so that we may enrich our community of practice. Would you like to submit an aea365 Tip? Please send a note of interest to aea365@eval.org. aea365 is sponsored by the American Evaluation Association and provides a Tip-a-Day by and for evaluators.

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