So, we’re gradually being eased out of lockdown – an experience that most of us have really had enough of by now! Who would have thought, a short three months ago, that the country would have been closed? Strange days indeed.
Nothing is more important than your health, and the last few months have caused many people to struggle with sleep, lose motivation to exercise and have long periods indoors. Pubs, hairdressers and theme parks, to name a few, have been allowed to open from the 4th July, allowing for a return to a little bit of normality. I, for one, already have my hair appointment booked and cannot wait! We were hoping to hear that gyms would be able to reopen on the same date but it looks like it’ll be a little while longer before we are able to welcome everyone back. In the meantime, what can you do to ease into the ‘new normal’, that we must accept for the time being?
Did you find the first few weeks of lockdown tough? As we change back to a life with more freedom again, we are likely to experience a similar feeling of upheaval. This can be especially challenging on our mental wellbeing. Some explorers and astronauts have found that, after a long period of a different way of life, they needed time to readjust. Many of us have found things we quite like about the lockdown – more quality time with the kids, less commuting and time-wasting meetings, and the ability to do things we never find the time for. Others have struggled with anxiety, no motivation, and loneliness. Returning to the old way of life could be really stressful, and you may find yourself feeling anxious. This is perfectly normal but take this time to look at the positives and to carry over some of the things you’ve found out about yourself into the future, and to take this opportunity to keep some of the things that you’ve enjoyed doing and implement them into your new way of life.
Lockdown has shown us there are alternatives to how we have been living and what we see as the norm. We tended to think that there was only one way to do things but now we’ve realised different options exist. We have quickly changed and adapted how we organise education, work and our social lives and much of this has been very successful. A lot of us have taken this opportunity to break away from the norm and have taken up a new hobby or learnt something new. We have cooked healthier meals, walked, exercised and had more time for ourselves, which is so important. Time may become a little restricted as we ease back into our lives but let’s try to carry this on throughout the next stage.
It’s important, though, to ensure as life changes, you stay mentally strong. Let’s have a quick look at how we can manage in the face of uncertainty:
Take a look at how you’re managing your time, money and energy. You don’t have to be social, look busy and feel tired all the time. Have you really missed some activities, are you relieved that you haven’t had to bother with some others? Now there’s an opportunity to say, “that wasn’t working for me, so I’m not going to do it anymore”. Doing this can be really liberating and refreshing and can help to open up new areas you haven’t considered before.
Have a personal plan to manage your health. Have you enjoyed exercising through the lockdown or is this something that you want to do more of when lockdown eases? Make the time for you and your health. Think about boosting your immune system, ask us about nutrition and how we can help you reach your fitness goals.
There are always problems we can’t solve immediately. But we can feel better by addressing how we manage the problem. Remember, every problem has a solution, and it’s easier to think how you can work out the solution rather than just worrying about the problem. You’ll feel much better afterwards too! Think about healthy coping strategies, meditate, try yoga or just get outside – In a study, 60% of people felt improved, both physically and mentally, after a period of just 17 minutes a day outside, especially in green spaces. Taking advantage of having more spare time and enjoying the current weather is a great way to feel better. Enjoy the fresh air and top up those crucial Vitamin D levels!
So, how was your lockdown? Are you one of the people who has adopted good habits throughout lockdown such as healthy eating, exercise, and time for you? If so, that’s amazing. Carry on doing what you’re doing! ????
If you were not motivated to do anything, maybe you’ve been a bit down, not seen many people, have been eating unhealthily and not done any exercise, then do not despair! Let’s see this as a new chapter! It’s never too late to start making good habits and this is the perfect time as we start getting back to work, meeting more people and beginning to enjoy social things again. Don’t be too hard on yourself. This has been a difficult, challenging time for everyone, and we’ve all dealt with it in different ways and done what’s right for us. Make sure that you take baby steps and change one thing at a time otherwise it can be too overwhelming, and you will give up. Maybe start with a healthy daily breakfast. Get used to having that and then add in a 10-minute workout 3 times a week. (Try our TonedIn10 workouts where you can do just one 10 minute workout to start with and then you can add more together to make a longer workout as you get stronger). Once you’re used to that start making healthy dinners from scratch – make in bulk and freeze for later. Add in a little more exercise and make time for you, whether that’s a relaxing bath, reading a book or going for a walk. Before you know it, these little changes will become your new way of life! Have a look at our website to see how we can help improve your fitness and provide some social interaction too ????. Let’s focus on keeping healthy habits or making new ones!
For many of us, coming out of lockdown is both exciting and scary at the same time. It’s important to stay positive and see this as a stepping-stone back to our lives before the pandemic.
Caroline & Hannah xx