cade doan

Regardless of if you watch sports religiously like I do, chances are you’ve still found yourself at a loss without them suddenly in search of a new hobby. I found myself in this predicament when I was home in Bend, Ore. for spring break. Luckily for me, Bend is known for having a plethora of outdoor activities to take up while practicing social distancing. Sports are one of the biggest aspects in my life and now that they’re gone, my days are bare. I needed to find a routine or an alternative hobby to take up in the meantime.

These activities range from hiking and backpacking to taking the kayak out on one of the many beautiful Cascade Lakes located in Central Oregon. I failed to mention skiing and snowboarding, which is normally everybodys first thought when they think of Bend, but social distancing measures would have been violated due to chair lifts.  In addition, there are many amazing local trailheads for mountain biking. On my 5th consecutive day in my house, I was nearly going crazy. Naturally, I decided to turn to the one sport still allowed to operate given the circumstances: golf. I just turned to my interests and I suggest you do the same whether it be meditating, knitting, playing video games, it doesn’t matter as long as you enjoy it and it hopefully feels at least somewhat the same way sports make me feel.

Of course, I’d be out on the golf course everyday if I could as social distancing is very manageable while golfing but the luxurity and cost of the sport forces me to choose another that I could repeatedly afford. This led me to running because I enjoy throwing my headphones in and blocking outside noise and just focusing on something. And hey, there’s no charge for running. Relative to working out, COVID-19 provides a good opportunity for those who aren’t comfortable going to the gym either. Throwing together an at-home workout space will reduce anxiety for some and allow for a more productive workout.

Even though I can now say I’m better at cooking than I ever have been, I’d much rather trade this newly acquired skill for the excitement and unpredictability that sports bring. I feel the world is empty without sports. They bring people from all over the world with different backgrounds together. 

Some of the more common quarantine activities I’ve continuously seen are puzzling, playing an old instrument or trying a new one, watching classic movies, etc. I know what you’re thinking, you think it’s crazy that these activities will suffice for the massive hit society took when sports were stopped. If you don’t want to try these commonly practiced quarantine activities or are already tired of them, here’s some other things you can do for yourself to expand your abilities: learning a new language and cooking are both satisfying and useful, which people could use years down the road if they choose to invest the time and energy now. 

I have been using the quarantine to try to improve my cooking skills as this is the first time I’ve had to cook all my meals for myself. I figured I might as well learn how to cook so I can make the watch parties that much better when sports return. But if you couldn’t already tell, I really miss sports.

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