This pandemic hasn’t been easy on any of us. Many of us are cooped up at home, working from home and far away from our loved ones. There’s a lot of tips and tricks being offered on the internet to stay physically fit and healthy. But let’s not forget, mental health is just as important as your physical well-being. While you’re staying at home and following the social-distancing rule, let’s focus on ways to stay physically and mentally fit and healthy during COVID-19.
- Stay Physically Active
- Maintain Social Connections
- Snacking And Food
- Me-Time And Proper Sleep
Stay Physically Active
For a lot of us when you add in the stress and anxiety of being cooped up, exercising and being active becomes a chore. However, exercise and physical activity not only positively influences your body and keeps you fit, but it also helps with your mental health and helps reduce stress. One of the best ways to stay mentally healthy is by exercising on the regular. Exercise and physical activity help release feel-good endorphins such as serotonin, norepinephrine and dopamine, which helps you stay calm and happy.
Your current work from home situation can hinder a lot of physical activity that would have otherwise been an everyday normal for you such as walking to the train station, moving back and forth fetching documents or even physical labor at work. However, don’t let those shut-down gyms and fitness centers get to you. You can just as easily work out at home as you normally would in a gym. It doesn’t matter if you have a small space or a large one, you can make it work. If you have a balcony, set up a yoga mat or even a rug and make it your special workout space. If you have a lawn, you have more space to work out. If you’re cramped up in an apartment, you simply need a small area that’s decluttered and set up a rug, to begin with your exercises. There’s a lot of excellent workout apps and videos on Youtube you should take advantage of. If you don’t have the equipment, use items at home such as wine bottles or water bottles as dumbbells, a small stool for step-up exercises or a rug in exchange for a yoga mat. And there’s plenty of exercises that don’t require equipment such as squats, burpees, planks, push-ups and so many more. Assign any specific time of the day for your exercising and religiously workout within that time. If you feel too cooped up, you could always go for a jog around your neighbourhood (don’t forget the six-meters-apart rule) and you’re good to go!
Maintain Social Connections
If you think being cooped up at home is getting to you, imagine what your friends, family members and neighbours are going through as well. It’s just as hard on them and the rest of your community as it is for you. There’s not a lot we can do to help one another’s physical health (except advice them on how to live and stay healthy), but we can still be there for them while maintaining social distancing.
The pandemic has given us all an opportunity to stay connected to our friends and family digitally. Check up on your loved ones through phone calls, video calls, stay connected through social media or emails. If you don’t have anyone to check up on or to stay connected with, remember, there are lots of groups on social media and online forums. You’ll be able to find a lot of people to reach out to or ones who are willing to reach out to you and be supportive of one another.
Snacking And Food
Now more than ever, it is quite easy for many of us to let go of ourselves and overeat or stress eat. When you go grocery shopping, be careful with what you pick out. Many of us are reaching out for those non-perishables (guilty!), canned goods and grains, which is fine, however always reach out for items that are low on added sugars, saturated fats and salt. Don’t miss out on veggies and fruits. This is a great time to buy fresh produce. Buy lots of fresh fruits and vegetables like strawberries, oranges, grapefruits, spinach, carrots, broccoli, apples and so on, cut them up and store them in the freezer. Instead of reaching out for chips, sodas and other junk food for snacks, fruits, nuts and dark chocolate (low on sugar) make for a healthier and awesome-er alternative. I feel like stress-eating and overeating is inevitable, especially when you’ve been cooped up at home for a few weeks. The best way to avoid it is to divert your attention. Get on call with a friend and vent out, read a good book or exercise, divert your attention as much as possible and avoid reaching for that bag of chips or that can of soda, you’ll thank yourself later. Eating as healthy as possible and keeping fit by exercise are just a few of the ways to stay physically healthy.
Me-Time And Proper Sleep
While maintaining social distancing and working from home, logging onto social media may seem like a reprieve even though at times, it’s not. Along with news channels and social media updating us on the COVID-19 situation, at times, this can get pretty stressful and anxiety-inducing. Take breaks once or twice a day, as many as you need for a few minutes and get in a comfortable headspace and stay calm. Me-time is a thing, and every one of us needs a little Me-time to cope with the stress and anxiety amid the chaos.
Amid this panic and confusion, managing anxiety and stress is essential to getting proper sleep. Yoga and meditation are great ways to calm yourself before sleep and to help relax your mind. A regular sleep routine is a must to help keep that stress at bay and to help you achieve that sense of normalcy. Try to sleep on time and wake up on time. Stay off the phone or social media before going to bed and make your sleeping space as comfortable and clean as possible changing your linens as frequently as possible and using your favorite pillows. If you’re someone who has trouble falling asleep, take a warm bath or a hot shower before bed or drink some chamomile lavender tea or any other herbal tea before bed. They help calm your mind and fall asleep easily. To stay physically or mentally active and calm for the rest of the day, proper sleep is a must and is crucial. So don’t miss out on your sleep and remember, switch off your phone or any other electronic devices an hour before you go to bed.
Remember you are not alone, we’re all in this together even though we’re supposed to remain six feet apart and maintain social distancing. The pandemic is a great opportunity for many of us to remain productive and do a lot of the things we wouldn’t normally do due to life and work interference. At Auraat, family connections and staying healthy means a lot to us. So stay connected to your loved ones, friends, neighbours, and family members, through digital means and keep on checking up on one another. On how to stay physically healthy, focus on exercising, proper sleep and healthy & nutritious diet. Your mental health is just as important as your physical health. If you feel the need to talk to someone, don’t hesitate to get in touch with your loved ones or even a stranger. These are hard and strange times, and we’re all in this together.
Stay Safe, Stay Healthy and Stay Connected!