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Free ways you can better yourself as you social distance

With coronavirus altering most people's ever...

Posted: Mar 28, 2020 10:35 AM

With coronavirus altering most people's everyday lives, it's not easy staying focused or motivated from home. And that's OK.

But if you've been craving more productivity during your self-quarantines, here are some ways to better yourself for free while you socially distance.

Finally learn how to cook

Years of watching "Top Chef" may now come in handy, as being stuck at home is the perfect time to master your cooking skills -- with some virtual guidance.

Chef Massimo Bottura, of the three-Michelin-starred Osteria Francescana, has been hosting online cooking classes on his Instagram in a show he calls "Kitchen Quarantine."

Even if you have no interest in replicating his recipes, watching Bottura make everything from chocolate sauce to hummus is, quite frankly, a delight.

For more formal cooking lessons, Christopher Kimball's Milk Street has made its online cooking school available, free of charge through April 30.

Courses range from "Some Like It Hot" (learning how to understand spicy and peppery ingredients) to "The Art of Kitchen Improv" (learning how to master cooking without a recipe).

America's Test Kitchen, which normally requires a membership for accessing its content, has also made 50 recipes available to the public for free.

In the collection of recipes, you'll find everything from flaky biscuits and ciabatta, to chocolate chip cookies and fried chicken.

Read (almost) anything for free

While libraries may have closed their physical doors due to coronavirus concerns, many of them still offer tons of ebooks, audiobooks, magazines and newspapers through their websites.

You can also search through JSTOR, which is digital library filled with academic journals, book chapters and more.

The database has open access materials, which means if you have access to WiFi, you can search content from more than 6,000 e-books and 150 journals. So whether you want to read up on northern race riots or Japanese industrial pollution, you know where to go.

Audible has also made a select number of children's audiobooks available for free during the pandemic, and you do not have to be a child to partake.

Stream virtual workouts

Whether you're a fitness fanatic, or just someone trying to get some movement in amid quarantine, you can pretty much stream any type of workout online these days.

Trainers, instructors at boutique studios and fitness gurus have thousands of videos available on YouTube, featuring built-in workouts you can do with or without equipment. For those who prefer streaming, many trainers across the US have taken to Instagram Live to offer virtual classes. A tip: Look up your favorite local gym or studio and see if they have anything virtual scheduled.

Some national gyms and fitness brands have also gone an extra step, offering on-demand videos for members and people who are potentially interested in membership. The YMCA, which launched its online YMCA 360 On Demand classes last week, is now offering them free of charge for a limited time. The website features videos for everything from yoga and barre to Tai Chi and weightlifting.

You can even workout with help from celebrities. Actor Chris Hemsworth, who has his own home fitness app called Centr, announced on his Instagram that the app will offer free virtual workouts for six weeks. Actor Sam Heughan also shared a free "30-day social-distancing challenge" through his work out program, My Peak Challenge.

No matter what you end up doing to keep yourself entertained, please, please remember to wash your hands.

New York Coronavirus Cases

County data is updated nightly.

Cases: 1998912

Reported Deaths: 51579
CountyCasesDeaths
Kings2647539990
Queens2635139581
Suffolk1935463314
Nassau1773443116
Bronx1748526394
New York1322964329
Westchester1257262245
Erie825881706
Richmond707011753
Monroe611141034
Orange46133782
Rockland45700941
Onondaga36061661
Dutchess27982435
Albany23679345
Oneida21454497
Niagara18314333
Broome17417348
Saratoga14418160
Ulster13039241
Schenectady12420192
Rensselaer10679136
Putnam1021791
Chautauqua8419134
Chemung7162133
Oswego698690
Ontario688792
Steuben6296141
St. Lawrence621795
Sullivan615368
Cayuga587190
Jefferson546565
Wayne526067
Cattaraugus516981
Genesee5065121
Herkimer4930107
Clinton455032
Madison430286
Fulton408186
Tompkins405849
Livingston401858
Montgomery3896116
Columbia383299
Cortland354660
Tioga341258
Warren338656
Wyoming326151
Otsego319647
Allegany318583
Greene312674
Chenango309174
Washington285755
Orleans277683
Lewis245734
Franklin240312
Delaware217036
Seneca188356
Schoharie155215
Essex150426
Yates111026
Schuyler99014
Hamilton3012
Unassigned14367
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