Americans have experienced a spike in productivity and work performance from teleworking during the pandemic, but their physical and mental health and wellness has suffered as a result. A new survey of over 1,000 Americans reveals surprising information about the lifestyle habits of Americans post-COVID.
“This survey tells us that the pandemic has affected the lives of Americans in surprising ways,” said Curtis Christopherson, President and CEO of Innovative Fitness. “Productivity is at an all-time high, and this may be driven by increased stress and uncertainty about the future, in addition to working from home. Unfortunately, mental and physical health has seen a steep decline across the board, with most Americans reporting weight gain, anxiety, and poorer sleep and diet. This is concerning, and we need to take action as a community to reinforce healthy habits.”
Americans have been more productive since the pandemic, with nearly 72% saying their productivity has either stayed the same or improved, and 36% noting a distinct improvement. In addition, nearly 75% of Americans have reported that their work performance has either stayed the same or improved since COVID, with almost 30% noting a distinct improvement in their work performance. Notably, the survey also found a strong correlation between regular exercise and job performance, with 75% of Americans who reported a high job performance working out between 3 – 5 days a week.
The pandemic has brought Americans closer together with their romantic partners, with 33% saying their relationships have improved since the pandemic. Notably, 51% of respondents who engaged in virtual fitness regularly during the pandemic, also noticed an improvement in their relationships. Although relationships have improved, Americans are engaging in less physical intimacy with their partners, with 33% admitting they are having less sex than before the pandemic.
Health and Wellness
Lifestyle changes brought about by the pandemic have also had a dramatic effect on the health and wellness of Americans, with 37% experiencing weight gain, and 32% admitting to a decline in their diet. Nearly 42% of Americans have also noted increased stress due to concerns about the future. Notably, of Americans who frequently participated in virtual fitness during the pandemic, nearly 60% noticed an improvement in their mental health.
When questioned about their future plans for fitness, 50% of Americans have said they don’t have plans to return to the gym after the pandemic. Virtual fitness continues to be a popular way to work out, with nearly 50% of Americans engaging in virtual fitness. When asked why they prefer virtual fitness, nearly 58% said it’s more convenient for their schedule than other methods of working out. With nearly 37% of respondents saying they’ve purchased at-home fitness equipment during the pandemic, Americans seem prepared to work out from home for the foreseeable future.
The pandemic has also had a negative impact on the sleep habits of Americans, with almost 28% experiencing poorer sleeping habits than usual. According to the survey, 66% of Americans aren’t currently getting 8 hours of sleep, and more than 25% are getting less than 5 hours of sleep. Americans who exercise between 3 – 5 times a week are more likely to have better quality of sleep, with 78% getting between 6 – 10 hours of sleep. Meanwhile, of Americans who don’t exercise regularly, almost 30% get less than 5 hours of sleep.
With millions of Americans struggling to maintain their health and wellness while working from home, many are questioning how they can adjust their daily routines to optimize physical and mental health.
Here are some tips
Moving your body helps deliver fresh nutrients to working muscles and helps to clear waste and toxins out of your body through your lymphatic system
Getting fewer than seven hours of sleep per night can lead to hormonal imbalances and compromise your immune system. Doing a relaxing activity or shutting screens off 1 – 2 hours before bed can improve your quality of sleep
Manage stress – Beyond optimizing your sleep routine, try adding in some daily relaxation time. This can be almost anything that you find relaxing, as long as it doesn’t involve a screen
Eat for health and well-being – Integrating healthy eating habits will help you manage weight and keep you feeling good. Prioritize healthy fats, colorful fruits and vegetables and lean proteins, and eat slowly (20 – 30 minutes at each meal) to give your natural fullness cues a chance to kick in
Make fitness a part of your work day – Schedule 30 minutes to 1 hour into your calendar to move every day. Innovative Fitness also offers discounted Corporate Training Packages, for companies looking to invest in their employees’ health
*Survey conducted by Innovative Fitness