Keep spread out while biking or running outdoors
The ice is gone from the beaches of Kachemak Bay and the bike trails are clear, so with the decent weather over the weekend, scores, if not hundreds of people, practiced their social distancing outside.
No, these weren’t like the scofflaws seen brandishing assault rifles on the steps of the Michigan Capitol or sun worshipers on the beaches of Miami. Alaskans were encouraged by Governor Mike Dunleavy to take advantage of the state’s great outdoors while social distancing.
KBBI checked with Catriona Reynolds of Cycle Logical, a downtown bicycle shop about exercising on two wheels in the time of Covid-19.
“In Alaska we are being told it's okay to socialize with our friends if we're being outside and respecting distances. But when you're hiking on a trail, or biking or running, doing anything where you're exerting yourself just be extra cognizant of the other trail uses. Including the people in your group if they are not part of your household,” Reynolds said. “And, it's reasonable to wear some kind of face covering when you're in more high traffic areas, maybe like the trailhead parking lot. And then once you're out on the trail to pull the mask down or mask off.”
Reynolds also cautions that as you exert yourself on the trail, participants should expand the distances between themselves greatly.
“Obviously when you're exercising, especially if it's moderate or vigorous exercise, you're breathing a lot more heavily. And they've seen pretty clearly that singing, which also involves heavier breathing and, and more breath being expelled forcefully, that there's been some hot pockets of folks that were exposed to COVID in situations where they were actually using social distancing,” she said. “And so applying that to exercise and exercise outside, if normally you'd be six feet away from someone, Dr. Zink and other studies are indicating that you should increase that significantly at those times when you're breathing heavily, and they're suggesting 20 feet.”)
Cycle Logical and Homer Saw and Cycle both rent bicycles, including fat bikes for beach riding. Reynolds says she’s not sure what form that will come in her for her company this season.
“We're definitely considering how we could do that safely and particularly if our social distancing gets relaxed a little bit. just because there's a lot of surfaces that people touch and, um, I guess we would need to at least good signage about, washing your hands after you use the bikes or before you use the bikes and things,” she said. “It would be good to mention that there's two places in town that you can rent fat bikes if you want to go and explore the beach and do some really fun social distancing (Homer) Saw and Cycle also have rentals as well as Cycle Logical.”