Social DISTANCING 101

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HOW TO KEEP WELL-FED AND HEALTHY DURING CORONAVIRUS ISOLATION

Right now, we’re staying home as much as we can to protect our health. But there are still plenty of ways to stay connected to the outside world — and get medical advice, shop for supplies and stay active without leaving your house. Here, we share a few apps, websites and other solutions. 

GROCERIES TO GO

If you find your cupboard is bare, never fear: Instacart lets you shop from stores like Publix, Kroger, Sam’s Club, CVS and Petco, among others, and even offer alcohol delivery where available. There’s a $5.99 fee for two-hour turnaround time. Shipt is a similar app, but its offerings include Target. Shipt charges a monthly $14 fee, plus a $7 fee for orders under $35. 

And, of course, you can order directly from many grocery stores and pick up your items without ever having to go inside the store. Shop at local Harris Teeters and Krogers via the store’s app or website, select a pickup time and then simply pull up to the designated curbside pickup spot. A store clerk will load the bags in your car and you’re on your way. Keep in mind, though, that fees for this service vary by store, and some stores are limiting their curbside pickup hours to manage the demand. 

Don’t forget Amazon, too: The massive online retailer offers everything from clothing to video games to home goods and groceries. If you subscribe to Amazon Prime, which has an annual fee of $119, you can get free two-day shipping on nearly everything, from toilet paper and cereal to socks and laundry detergent. You also get access to Amazon’s streaming service, which offers thousands of movies and TV shows. 

It’s even possible to shop Whole Foods Market through Amazon, since the online retailer bought the grocery chain a few years ago. Order through Amazon, and your Whole Foods order will be delivered to your door — though again, thanks to increased demand, you’ll want to check availability first. pets

PETS

Chewy.com lets you order pet supplies, including medications, to be delivered right to your door. Many local vets are also offering curbside vaccinations and checkups, or delivering prescription food and medication to you car. Call your vet to determine how to best care for your four-legged friend during this time.

DINNER AT YOUR DOOR

For food you didn’t have to cook yourself, try Uber Eats and Grubhub. Both apps let you order anything off the menu from a participating restaurant, bringing the meal to your door. As restaurants close their dining rooms, many local eateries now offer curbside pickup and delivery options. 

HOME HEALTH

homehealthEven though we’re spending most of our time in isolation, it’s still possible to come down with sinus infections, colds and other maladies. Check your insurance to see if it covers Teladoc Health, a national servicewhich connects you with a physician via phone or video call. Your primary care physician or local urgent care clinic may offer a similar service, or may be able to diagnose your issues over the phone and, if needed, send prescriptions to the pharmacy of your choosing — and many pharmacies, like CVS, are starting to offer delivery for certain prescriptions.

To encourage people to stay home and to free up medical resources, the federal government is expanding telehealth benefits under Medicare, making it easier for Medicare patients to get the care they need right over the phone or internet.

FOCUS ON FITNESS

homehealth2There are many digital options to help you turn your living room or garage into a temporary gym.

Many trainers and gyms are using the Zoom video calling app to hold training sessions and group exercise classes. Planet Fitness has turned to Facebook, hosting “Home Work-Ins” on its page. Streaming services like Amazon Prime and Netflix also offer workout videos you can try.

If group classes aren’t your thing, you can always challenge the kids to a session of “Just Dance,” a video game series available for multiple platforms. 

SOCIAL, BUT DISTANT

It’s important not take care of your mental health in a stressful time like this. Apps like Headspace and Calm also offer guided meditation sessions to help you reduce stress and anxiety.

And, of course, people are social creatures. It’s important to keep spirits high by connecting with loved ones and family members — from a safe distance. Try hosting a virtual happy hour using Zoom or an app like Google Hangouts. It will give you a chance to see some familiar faces. You’ll find spending time “together” is good for both body and soul.