If you’ve spent lockdown watching far more Netflix than usual, drinking more often and eating takeout regularly, you certainly aren’t alone. You may have exercised far less, taken up baking, and took comfort in food and drink. It’s been a challenging time, and no one could blame you for seeking pleasures where you can.
But, this is bound to have taken its toll on your health and fitness levels. A few weeks indulgence over Christmas and holidays won’t hurt, but if you’ve been off the health wagon for the last four months, you might be noticing the effects. Your jeans may be a little tight, you might be out of breath walking up the stairs, and your mental health might have taken a knock.
If you are feeling ready to make some changes and improve your health and fitness, here are some tips to help.
Take a Look At Your Habits
Bad habits tend to set in at times of unrest. But, while they are easy to fall into, they can be much harder to get out of.
Take a look at your habits. Are you drinking alone? Eating big, comforting takeouts? Reaching for the cookie jar throughout the day?
Or have you lost your better habits? Have you stopped exercising? Are you driving for short journeys instead of walking? Be honest about your habits, and then focus on changing some of them. But remember, the occasional treat is fine.
Make Small Sustainable Changes
Try to change your whole lifestyle in one go, and you’ll struggle. You might have a great few weeks, but it will be very hard to stick to full time. Instead, focus on small, sustainable changes. Have a few days a week without alcohol, and only eat dessert once a week. Go for a short walk after dinner, or practice a gentle yoga routine first thing in the morning. Drink more water, eat more fruit, and try to increase your activity throughout the day, even if it’s just jogging on the spot while your dinner cooks.
Take Your Time
Small sustainable changes are fantastic, but you shouldn’t expect your fitness levels to jump right back to where they were in February. It’s going to take time, so don’t put pressure on yourself.
Look After Your Mental Health
Your mental health is bound to have faced some ups and downs over the last few months, and they might not be over yet. Healthy eating and exercise will give your mental health a boost, but you should also focus on finding ways to relax, talking to those that you love, and doing things that make you happy.
Get That Checkup
If you’ve been avoiding the doctor, but you are worried about symptoms, or you have an underlying condition which hasn’t been looked at for a long time, then you should head in for a checkup as soon as you can. Yes, doctors are busy, and you should take precautions to keep yourself safe, but, it’s still important that you get checked out if you are worried about your health. Coronavirus doesn’t mean that other illnesses and health concerns aren’t as important as they used to be.