Most of you guys know I am big advocate of mental health.

It’s important to be cognizant how your mind is reacting to things and how high your stress levels are.

Being cooped up inside can make even the mentally soundest person go a little nuts. Seeing the same four walls and the same handful of people can make you feel a little insane. Tempers will get shorter, those you love will become a little more annoying and you’ll get tired of cooking every single night.

It’s so important during the coronavirus pandemic people are even more aware of their mental health and doing what they need to do to take care of themselves both physically and mentally.

Exercise is always one of the top suggestions for curbing stress, but it’s harder and harder to get exercise right now.

I was extremely disappointed to hear about the Charles E. Bailey Sportplex closing. That was one of mine and Stella’s favorite spots to go walking when she was getting sick of seeing the same sights and smells around our neighborhood. It’s a safe place with not much traffic and usually there were a few other dogs for Stella to sniff — or at least where they’d marked their territories.

But I was even more disappointed when I talked to Alexander City Parks and Recreation Department director Sonny Wilson and he explained just why the Sportplex needed to be closed.

It wasn’t because everyone was doing something wrong.

There were several parents who were bringing their kids out for a stroll and it’s been said keeping within your immediate family groups seems to be OK as long as no one is sick. The parks and rec department had just set up turtle and fish feeding stations at the pond — 6 feet apart, of course — for kids to come do a little activity and get out of the house, and a handful of families had already taken advantage.

What Wilson said was basically most people were following the rules.

But the ones who weren’t are the ones who got the Sportplex closed for everyone.

It wasn’t just they were gathering either. It’s because when city workers asked those people gathering to disperse, the workers were met with vulgar words and even threats. They had to go so far as to get the Alexander City Police Department involved.

That’s despicable.

In a time like this, we at The Outlook have stressed over and over the importance of kindness and generosity. We’ve stressed how necessary it is to be safe and take precautions. We’ve even said we don’t think the local and state governments are doing enough to ensure our safety.

But still, we hear continued reports like this — groups gathering at the Sportplex, full boats riding around Lake Martin, people stopping to socialize at Walmart. The list goes on and on.

It’s extremely unfortunate a few bad eggs had to ruin the opportunity for everyone to use the Sportplex. I beg of you not to do this anymore.

I’m not saying don’t go for a hike at the Smith Mountain Trails. I want you to get exercise; I want you to get outside; I don’t want you to go crazy. But if you’re gonna do it, do it the right way: Go hike with your dogs, take your boat out with your immediate family, walk around your neighborhood with your significant other.

Until we all take this seriously, it’s never going to dwindle and more and more opportunities to do things the right way are going to be taken from those who actually want to do so.

Lizi Arbogast is the sports editor at Tallapoosa Publishers, Inc.