Wellness to me means a healthy lifestyle including good nutrition, healthy weight, regular exercise, and building and maintaining a positive mind frame as they are all interconnected. In these uncertain times of COVID -19, it is more important than ever to maintain a healthy lifestyle and it is never too late to start. The follwing are some ideas for those of you wanting to make that first step to a healthier life.
If you are becoming anxious, or depressed due to isolation; physical activity can help reduce the symptoms as endorphins are released into the brain during exercise. You can start by taking a 15 minute walk 2 times a day and focus on breathing. Gradually increase to a 30 minute walk twice a day. You may find excuses not to do it; but if you just do it no matter what, you will be on your way to creating a healthy habit. I have been training consistently for 15 years and the number one reason for that is it clears my mind and balances my energy. I can walk into the gym after a hard day or stress and EVERY time I Ieave I feel amazing. Physical activity really does help with your mind and of course the body. Your heart become stronger, your energy increases, your self esteem increases and life in general is easier physically.
As for nutrition and food intake, it may be more difficult at this time to eat healthy as a lot people are emotional eaters an this is an emotional time. It is best to make 1 change per week on your diet for long lasting results. You can start today by increasasing your water intake. You need approximately 30ml of water per kg of bodyweight per day. After a week of increasing your water intake, you can add to that. For example, if you are drinking 3 cans of pop a day, go down to 1 can. After a week of that you can add on again. Maybe try not adding butter to your vegetables or other food. These are all examples but you get the point. Weight loss and healthy eating should be gradual if you want life long results as it really is a lifestyle change.
There is so much information out there in regards to COVID -19, it can be overwhelming to us all. To help reduce the effects of stress, you can try sitting quietly in the morning and breathe deeply, focus on your breath. It can help reduce your blood pressure and stress. Try this for a few minutes when you wake up and before you go to bed. You can also try reading a good book, playing a new song on your guitar…do something for you that makes you happy. Little things can make a big difference with our mental health.