13 Apr Keeping your health in good shape amid the Covid-19 pandemic
As the Covid-19 pandemic changes everyone’s daily lives—from stay-at-home policy; work-from-home; social distancing; limited supermarket hours; temporary closures of some establishments, businesses, malls, and schools; job loss; and economic downturn—so many things have changed in the past few months.
With uncertainty surrounding us—not knowing when things will go back to normal, it can be easy to give in to stress, anxiety and even depression during these challenging times. Situations are tough anywhere in the world—anyone is affected but while others are getting by, some others are having it worse.
So in this period where all are enforced to stay at home by the government, suddenly finding yourself holed up every day at home can pose challenges—not only about continuing to be productive for work but also on maintaining well-being.
So here are some ways and tips you can manage and keep your health in good shape despite the current conditions.
Whether you regularly go to the gym or you’re the type who prefers simple exercises, now that everyone is spending their time at home, both sides are on the same boat. So if you’re thinking how you can continue your workout at home, it’s important to integrate the following for a full-body workout: upper and lower body, core exercises and cardio.
Just some examples of at-home exercises that ensure full-body workout and also don’t need equipment are squats—a foundational movement that maintains your function to bend and lift things; plank—a core strength exercise that builds the upper and lower body; P.E. class moves like jumping jacks and jump roping—both are excellent for getting your heart rate up; burpees—cardio and strength exercise rolled into one; lunges—mostly focusing on the lower body, but you can also include a shoulder press or bicep curl; and core and mat exercises—look for variations of sit-ups and crunches to toughen the back and abdomen.
Depending on your preference, you can also convert any of these exercise moves into a high-intensity workout. As recommended by Julie Jones, a wellness expert and personal trainer in an interview with Eating Well magazine, time each move to 20-30 seconds and place a few seconds of rest in between each move—doing so will allow you to have a feel of each move to know how comfortable you are.
Be mindful of your mental health; be creative with your food
Besides your physical health, it’s equally as important to care for your mental health especially with the given conditions. If you think seeing the news stresses you and distracts you from the things you want to focus your attention on, then, by all means, tone down your consumption to just a few minutes.
What you can do instead is to take deep breaths, have your favorite drink, read that book you’ve been meaning to, hang out by the porch with your pet, do some gardening, connect with your family and friends online, binge-watch new shows, have a movie marathon, donate to those in need, eat your favorite foods, or cook.
Now isn’t the time to think about dieting, it’s okay to let yourself off the hook just this time. Be giving and kind to yourself, it helps you calm down amid the crisis going on.
As you also limit your grocery trips and for stocking purposes, it’s understandable to have a lot of processed and canned goods for now.
However, you can be a little creative in the kitchen to whip up healthier versions of meals using these goods such as making a smoothie with frozen fruit and shelf milk, vegetarian chili with canned tomatoes and beans, making a pot of soup, and adding vegetables to macaroni and cheese. You could also try out simple dishes with only a few ingredients.
In addition to getting at least 7-9 hours of sleep, drinking plenty of water and committing to intuitive eating; through practicing self-care, mindfulness, and balance, you are instilling normalcy to your every day—thus contributing to the universal goal of completely defeating Covid-19.