The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted us all. For most of us, our schedules are all out of sorts and we don’t have access to the things we usually do. This may be a wide-open opportunity to develop habits that may negatively impact our health. Taking control of our wellness during this time is more crucial than ever!
Here are some ways you can be sure to maintain or improve your physical and mental wellness during isolation.
At a time like this, it is vital to establish and maintain a regular routine. Start by going to bed at the same time each night and set an alarm to wake up each morning. Try to eat your meals at the same time throughout the day as well. As comfortable as it may be, get out of those pajamas by a certain time each morning then get showered and dressed for the day. Keep an activity journal so you can set goals and keep track of your progress.
Although it is important to stay informed and aware of the latest recommendations, limiting time on social media and watching the news can help to minimize feelings of anxiety and stress. Reading a book, doing a puzzle and playing music are great ways to take your mind off of the negative. Simple mindfulness exercises such as listening to or feeling your breath are great ways to reduce anxiety and bring a sense of calmness. Try breathing in for a count of three, hold your breath for a count of three and exhale very slowly for a count of five.
Purposeful exercise (e.g. 30 minutes of cardio) can improve your mood as well as help to maintain your health. Anything you can do to get the blood moving and heart pumping is going to help. If you are looking for something more intense, you can join my Instagram Live at 10 am on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays for a 30 minute HIIT session and Tuesdays and Thursdays for a recovery session including mobility and stretch work. We’d love to have you take part. Performance One Fitness
Do your best to maintain structured meals. It’s easy to grab a cookie or some chips, so it’s important to minimize the amount of snacks and processed foods in the house. Before you reach for a snack, have a glass of water instead (most of the time you are just thirsty). Try a new recipe and learn to make a new meal. There are so many great recipes online to choose from. Plan out your meals for the week (or two) so you only have to make one grocery run. There are many fresh foods in season now that are far more nutritious than food from cans and boxes – and safe if cleaned well.
Challenge yourself to learn a new skill. Establish a new pattern – maybe a new language that you’ve always wanted to learn. Read a book or watch a documentary. Anything to keep your mind stimulated and engaged.
Use this time to hit the reset button. Assess where your life is and where you want it to be. Have you drifted too far from your personal goals? Relationships? Work goals? Remember, we should be practicing physical distancing and avoiding those who don’t, but that doesn’t mean you can’t stay connected. Keep in touch with friends, family and fitness coaches with a phone call or text. Be there for the ones who need you and let them be there for you.
Our world we live in may be changing, but this may be the opportunity we need to change how we live in our world. Take it!
Paul Davidson – Personal & Wellness Coach