Here we go again! Lockdown take 3. So today, not the blog post I had planned on goals and tracking progress, instead 5 ways to look after yourself in Lockdown:
1. Be realistic
I think we all started off in March last year deciding that lockdown could just be the perfect time to get super fit and healthy…only to realise very quickly the opposite was more likely to happen.
This time we know the score – the biggest battle is your mindset and mental health.
If you can stay positive and hopeful, then everything else is easier. If you let yourself sink into doom and gloom, your mindset will very quickly become ‘sod it, I give up’.
Realistically, you’ll probably be somewhere between the two most of the time. And that’s fine.
2. Lower your expectations
The one thing that became apparent last time was that you will have good days and not so good/ awful days – it’s a bit of an emotional rollercoaster.
As a result, you’ll gave good days and not so good days.
On good days, embrace it. Exercise, eat healthily, drink plenty of water, be productive, tick off each challenge I set, enjoy feeling good and try to hold onto it.
On not so good days, just get through it and know it WILL pass. Lower your expectations and be kind to yourself. Do whatever you can to make yourself feel better** and don’t beat yourself up if some things slide. Just aim to look after yourself in Lockdown.
3. Don’t over do the alcohol
**Whilst it may seem that drowning your sorrows is the only way forward, try to keep it under control. If you end up drinking every day, you will slowly feel worse and worse as Lockdown continues. And, as it looks to last until at least mid Feb, that’s a long time.
Firstly, alcohol is a depressant. Yes, it will lift your mood momentarily but you’ll then experience a ‘low’ as your body has to process it and get it out your system.
It also effects sleep. You might fall asleep easier but you’ll be more restless as your blood sugar levels drop in the night. As a result, this limits the amount of deep, restorative sleep you get. Waking up feeling groggy and sluggish is a rubbish way to start the day.
I’m not going to tell you not to drink…because this is all about realistic…just think about controlling it. If you start having a glass or two every night, you will start craving it more. Wine o’clock will roll around and it’ll be very hard to resist. Instead, set some targets. Eg. Have a glass or two every other day or have at least 3 consecutive alcohol free days a week.
When you do drink, try not to go overboard. The recommended alcohol limit over a week is 14 units for both men and women. This equates to about a bottle and a half of wine! And ideally it’s spread over the week, not all in one night. Can you stick to it?!!!!!
4. No grazing allowed!
Constant grazing is your enemy during lockdown. Easy access to kitchen combined with anxiety, boredom and frustration can lead to far too many calories!
- Stick to 3 meals a day with 1 snack if you need it
- If you don’t buy it, you won’t eat it. Go shopping/ do online shop when you’ve just eaten, you’re more likely to only buy healthy foods
- Put treats out of sight and load up the fruit bowl on the side. So simple but if it’s not in your line of vision you won’t crave it as much
- Distract yourself. Every time you find yourself opening the fridge, redirect to the kettle and make a cup of tea. Take it outside, far away from temptation
- Drink more water. It’ll stop you confusing thirst with hunger and it’ll keep you feeling good.
5. Beat Lockdown lethargy
Finally, Lockdown lethargy is 100% real. The more you stay in, the more knackered/ demotivated/ sluggish you feel. And then the more you want to reach for a quick fix (alcohol, food)…it’s a vicious cycle.
As a result, once you’re in it, it’s very hard to escape…
- The best cure for lockdown lethargy is fresh air and exercise. Combine the two and get outside every day without fail. Do it at a time you know you need a ‘pick me up’ …mid morning/ mid afternoon maybe? Listen to a podcast or your favourite music. Take a thermal mug of tea. Treat it as ‘you’ time. And if you feel like jogging instead of walking, great!
- Ticking things off is another way to stay energised...little things make a big difference. Make a short list each day of things you want to achieve. Including ‘have a shower’ and ‘get dressed’. Tick them off as you do them and I guarantee it’ll make you want to do more. Keep aiming to look after yourself in Lockdown, whatever that looks like for you.
If you want some more support and structure to get help look after yourself in Lockdown, consider signing up for my 8 week Kickstart Programme. It starts on 18th Jan and it’s perfect for getting you through the next couple of months. Click here for all the info.
Last of all, I’ll be giving lots of tips and advice on my Facebook page – stay positive with my help. Just click here to check it out.