Staying healthy and active during COVID-19 is not easy, but not impossible
Just as Melbourne got a taste of “normalcy” as restrictions were easing up, Melbourne was slammed with a ‘second-wave’ of COVID-19 cases that forced the Victorian Government to make an unprecedented decision on Sunday afternoon where Victoria was declared into a “State of Disaster” moving into stage 4 lockdowns. As cases continue to spike, we all have our fingers crossed that this round of lockdown will turn things around but the end might be further than we hope. This round of lockdown looks a lot different with one of our only allowed activities such as exercising outdoors now being restricted to having to wear a mask, 1-hour max AND within a 5km radius of your house…as if being trapped at home wasn’t enough.
Naturally, with busy lifestyles, it was already hard to keep the mind and body healthy and isolation and lockdown just made this even harder!
We’ve been working from home for over 135 days and while our productivity rates have been higher, it’s been harder to be more active so we started a Healthy Habits group within our business and today, we’re here to share with you three important things we stand by to help yourself stay healthy and active during COVID 19.
1. Hey Siri, play “Move Your Body” by Sia
This might be an obvious advice, but you’d be surprised by the amount of steps you miss out on when working from home. Without having to commute to work, the majority of us might head straight to our desks from our beds. If you’re lucky, you might be able to get more than 10 steps recorded on your Fitbit. And so, making sure you incorporate some form of exercise into your daily routine is important because when you exercise, it reduces the levels of cortisol aka a stress hormone. A simple walk around the block would help both your body and your headspace and the movement combined with fresh air and sunshine will help both your physical and mental health.
If you’re more of an active one and is missing the gym, here are our top three picks of workout channels you can attempt at home (a fair warning though, you will sweat and maybe even cry):
If you’re after for something more zen and less physical, check out Yoga with Adriene.
2. Sleep, sleep, sleep and then sleep some more
A good night’s sleep is incredibly important for both your physical and mental health. Everyone knows you should aim to sleep for 7-9 hours a night. Why? Because sleep helps the body rest, restore and recover. A good sleep can also improve concentration and productivity, enhance your memory performance and improve problem-solving skills!
If you’re having a hard time getting a good night sleep, we suggest make it a priority by:
- Stick to a sleep schedule, even on weekends: this means sleeping and waking up at the same time
- Exercise daily
- Reduce blue light exposure at least 30 mins before bedtime: This includes phones and laptops. Maybe it’s time to pick up a book instead?
- Avoid consuming caffeine late in the day: this means no more coffee at 5pm but instead, try to aim to have your last coffee by 12pm. Study shows when caffeine is consumed throughout the day, the level of sleep decreases. Yes, even to all of you who say caffeine doesn’t affect your sleep, it does.
- Reduce irregular or long daytime naps: naps throughout the day can disrupt your body clock, so the more naps you take throughout the day, the more awake you’ll be when your bedtime comes. Try to avoid naps if you can, this way you’ll be tired enough to sleep by bedtime.
HOT TIP: If you’re really struggling to fall asleep, try a guided sleep meditation. It guarantees sleep in 12 mins!
3. Choosing your meals wisely
Eating well can help you stay healthy and avoid sickness. We’ve all heard of the 5 food groups before and even though it may seem a little bit daunting trying to incorporate them all into your meals on a daily basis, start small. For example, swap out your usual snacks with a fruit and instead of eating chips with your meal, swap it out for a salad.
If you’re not a fan of cooking and you’re dying for restaurant quality food, we recommend checking out Sate Meals. They offer simple and convenient, yet tasty ready-to-eat meals. You can even treat it like a reward for eating well throughout the day by focusing on eating more grains, bread, fruit and vegetables and then indulge in one of these meals for dinner! We highly recommend the X.O Mac n Cheese as a guilty pleasure. It might sound like a weird combination but it is mag-ni-fique! *insert chef’s kiss*
Finally, if you are struggling with the lockdown, just know that you’re not alone. These are uncertain times and it is ok to not feel ok. Stay connected with your friends and family or with people you know you can lean on. If you do want to reach out to someone else, try one of these services. We also have a working from home playlist for you to vibe to, just in case you’re sick of yours.
Stay safe, stay healthy and stay active!