In our current COVID-19 situation, you may be experiencing a variety of emotions, or be in a situation, that makes it hard to feel your best. Maybe you’re stuck inside, or unable to do your ordinary exercise program. You might be bored, or feeling too overwhelmed to even think of writing a routine or schedule. Maybe you’re feeling stressed and anxious all the time and you don’t know what the best thing to do right now is.
Below I’ve written 5 simple yet effective ways you can do to keep your body and mind healthy, not just during our current situation, but in any time of life!
If you’ve ever been a health coaching client of mine you’ll know this is one of the first goals we set. That’s because it’s so easy to up your water intake, but it has amazing health benefits, so it’s a great place to start! Although there are mixed views on exactly how much you should be drinking, most people generally don’t drink enough, so you could start by adding in just one extra glass a day. The general consensus seems to be around 2 litres a day to support your body in functioning well and keeping dehydration at bay!
Eat the rainbow.
Right now, some foods are harder to come by, which means eating your normal go-to foods might not be possible. This could also be a great opportunity to try something new! Aim to eat a variety of different colours of fruits and veggies in the day so that your body is getting lots of different vitamins and minerals to help it thrive!
Get active every day – preferably outside.
Here in the UK we’re currently still allowed to exercise outdoors, but even if you’re not in the same position, getting active every day will still do wonders for your health and your mood. You don’t need to go fitness crazy and begin a new training program (though if you want to take the opportunity to improve your fitness, now could be a good time too), but aiming to get a little activity into every day will be a huge help right now.
NHS guidelines are 150 minutes of moderate activity, like a brisk walk, a gentle bike ride, or maybe dancing, or 75 minutes vigorous activity a week (think fast or hilly running and higher intensity home workouts). Mixing strength training, even if it’s only bodyweight, with cardio is also going to be super beneficial. If you’re struggling for ideas, I have lots on offer in the membership, including live classes with me, check it out here.
Take a moment to breathe, and smile!
If you have a regular meditation practice, you get a gold star. If not, it’s not a problem! Start by setting a timer on your phone for one or two minutes, find a comfortable, quiet place to sit, close your eyes and just focus on your breath for that time. You’ll be amazed at how much calmer you’ll (generally) feel afterwards – just try not to get frustrated if your mind starts to wander!
It takes time and patience to really switch off and focus on your breath, so don’t worry if you don’t find it easy the first time! To finish your mini meditation session, have a little smile! Seriously, even when you’re in a bad mood, psychologists have found that smiling helps to lift your spirits, so turn that frown upside down!
Finally, sleep is one of the lesser talked about, but critically important elements of healthy living. Aim for at least 6-8 hours a night to let your body rest and heal, and your mind switch off. Right now, we’ve been guilty of watching a little too much late-night-netlix in our household, so getting to bed at a more reasonable time is my goal for the next few weeks!
You don’t have to worry about trying to implement these all at once, just start small and add one or two things at a time to your daily routine to see if it has an effect on your physical and mental health.