As a senior in high school, I have been looking forward to this Spring all year because of events such as prom, project graduation, project hope, my last season of lacrosse, and enjoying my final summer with the people I have spent the past four years getting to know and love. Ever since Governor Murphy issued the stay at home order on March 21, it has been difficult to cope with the idea that my last days in high school would be behind a screen. Many New Jerseyans, such as myself, are in need of activities and social interaction so as to not sit on their couch all day watching Netflix. Therefore, allow me to share with you the ways that I have been able to overcome the situation and occupy myself during this pandemic through exercise, cooking, gaming, and listening to music.
As a dedicated varsity athlete, I have invested much of my time over the past few years to working out. However, without gym equipment at my house, it can be difficult to stay in shape, especially during lacrosse season. However, there are still many bodyweight exercises that are easy to perform in one’s own home. The following exercises are categorized by the body part that they target, and they each include how many reps you should attempt per set. Remember to always hydrate and stay 6 feet apart from anyone if you are exercising outdoors!
Push-ups x 10 reps
Diamond (Close Grip) push-ups x 10 reps
Decline Push-ups x 10 reps
Wide Grip Push-ups x 10 reps
Push-up Hold x 15 seconds
Pike Push-ups x 10 reps
Dips x 15 reps
Pull-ups x 10 reps
(If you don’t have a pull-up bar, jam open a door and use the top of it!)
Chin-ups x 15 reps
Wide Grip Pull-ups x 10 reps
Close Grip Pull-ups x 10 reps
Flexed Arm Hang x 45-60 seconds
Handstand Push-ups x 5 reps
Squats x 20 reps
Goblet Squats (Use anything for a weight) x 10 reps
Squat Jumps x 10 reps
Lunges x 20 reps
Forward & Backward Jumps x 10 reps each
Wall Sits x 45-60 seconds
Complete a Murph
x 1 Mile Run
x 100 Pull-ups
x 200 Push-ups
x 300 Squats
x 1 Mile Run
Deck of Cards Workout
Pick a card and do that many push-ups, sit-ups, or squats. See how many cards you can get through out of the deck of 52.
It is said that a cook should never reveal their recipes. Considering the circumstances, I am willing to share some recipes from my own personal cookbook, recipes that I have modified to taste incredible over the past couple of years. These will not only get you through the day, but they are also guaranteed to impress your entire family. However, don’t stop after cooking just these foods. Expand to different flavor profiles, types of food, and push your limits so that you can discover new skills you never knew that you had.
1 ¾ cup flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
2 tbs granulated sugar
2 cups buttermilk
½ cup melted butter
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 eggs, separated
½ tsp salt
Sift all of the dry ingredients into a bowl and make a well in the dry mix.
In a separate bowl, whisk buttermilk, egg yolks, melted butter.
In a separate bowl, beat egg whites to soft peaks.
Pour wet mix into the well in the dry mix and whisk.
Whisk in vanilla extract.
Fold in ⅓ of egg whites, and then combine the rest.
Cook with a waffle iron and enjoy!
Edible Cookie Dough
1 stick unsalted butter
½ cup + 1 tbs light brown sugar
2 tbs granulated white sugar
1½ tsp vanilla extract
1 cup flour
2 tbs milk
¼ tsp salt
Chocolate chips, chocolate chunks, m&ms, or anything of the sort
Cream butter, white sugar, and brown sugar in a mixer.
Add in vanilla.
Add in flour (it will be crumbly).
Add in milk and mix until it becomes a smooth consistency.
If you are looking for a more firm cookie dough, add more flour.
Fold in chocolate chips.
Add to brownies, ice cream sundaes, or just eat on its own!
One way to stay in touch with friends and family is through games. Playing video games is an easy excuse to talk to friends over apps such as Discord and Facetime. Also, video chatting applications allow you to play some other games with family such as charades and pictionary. Each of the suggested games below can easily be played with your friends and family despite being in different quarantined households. No matter which game you are playing, call up your friends and family so that you can talk to them while playing.
Free Mobile Games
Video Chatting Games
A quarantine may mean a lot of alone time, but what better way to pass the time than by listening to music and learning new songs? Many of us have a piano that we haven’t played since elementary school or a guitar collecting dust in a corner, so give them a shot! There are countless free lessons on YouTube, and once you get good enough, you can also look up tutorials on how to play your favorite songs. In addition to playing new instruments, you can also explore new styles of music. Have you ever given Broadway or country music a shot? Most people haven’t, but let that change today! Here is a list of classic songs from 6 different styles of music. If you like some of them, explore each style a bit more. Enjoy!
My Way - Frank Sinatra
Sweet Caroline - Neil Diamond
Hooked on a Feeling - Blue Swede, Björn Skifs
I Wanna Dance with Somebody - Whitney Houston
Piano Man - Billy Joel
My Heart Will Go On - Céline Dion
Down - Jay Sean, Lil Wayne
Replay - Iyaz
Since you Been Gone - Kelly Clarkson
Viva la Vida - Coldplay
Drops of Jupiter - Train
Hey There Delilah - Plain White T’s
Alexander Hamilton - Hamilton
I Believe - The Book of Mormon
Waving Through a Window - Dear Evan Hansen
Santa Fe - Newsies
Seasons of Love - Rent
One Day More - Les Misérables
Cruise - Florida Georgia Line
Chicken Fried - Zac Brown Band
Wagon Wheel - Darius Rucker
In Case You Didn’t Know - Brett Young
Speechless - Dan + Shay
Best I Ever Had - Gavin DeGraw
Honey, I’m Good - Andy Grammar