Term 2 has commenced for the kids but unlike the usual (quiet) celebrations for parents as we send our kids back off to school, we are having to keep them home AND deal with the realities of remote schooling (Fun… not!). On top of this, many of us are working from home ourselves or even if you are heading off to work the amount of time spent at home, thanks to COVID-19 has increased dramatically for all of us.
So how do we deal with this? How do we remain healthy and sane?
Over the past few years, thanks to my online nutrition program (the 6-week Low Carb Challenge), I have spent a lot more time working from home. During this time I’ve learnt a few things about remaining productive whilst keeping healthy and fit.
Here are my top 5 tips
1.Create a routine
Start with the basics and keep to a regular waking and bedtime. Whilst this is important for all of us, I believe this is most important for kids. Set the boundaries and stick with them. Get out of your PJs every day, get dressed, do your hair, brush your teeth – these little habits can go a long way in regards to how you feel throughout the day.
Have set times each day for work, exercise, family time, quiet time, cooking time. Vary these on the weekend so that you create some ‘normality’ in your week. This will also help you remember which day of the week it actually is!
2. Eat well
Whilst this is something that I believe (and passionately advocate) looking after ALL THE TIME, it may be more important to have this in place right now. With the fridge and pantry just meters away, it may be easy to succumb to regular snacking. My advice is as follows:
- Fill your fridge with fresh whole real foods – if you are going to grab something at least make it something nutritious
- Get rid of all the processed packaged foods, especially those full of sugar, refined carbs and processed oils i.e. biscuits, chips, crackers, muesli bars, flavoured yoghurt
- Take time to make yourself good, complete meals including a source of protein and lots of veg. When you eat meals that are satisfying and complete, your chance of ‘picking’ on food throughout the day will decrease
- Need some help? Grab a copy of our free LCHF Recipe eBook here
3. Move often
Whilst planned heart-pumping exercise is important, it is just as important to simply move/change position regularly. Set an alarm for every 45-60 minutes and make sure you get up and move every time the alarm sounds. Get up and fold some washing or empty the dishwasher; go outside and get some fresh air and sunshine; do a few stretches; pat the dog; water your plants… anything, just be sure to move.
In addition to this, plan to exercise for a minimum of 30-minutes EVERYDAY! Get sweaty, get your heart rate up. The benefits are endless but possibly the most important benefit right now is the dose of ‘happy hormones’ that will be released. Online exercise is the ‘go to’ at the moment – click here if you’d like to join the EPT Online Private Facebook Group, giving you access to a library of exercise classes and daily LIVE classes.
4. Connect with others
Phone a friend! Forget text messages and have a real conversation with someone. Better yet, why not use Skype, Zoom or Face-time so that you can see them at the same time. As humans we are social creatures and making time to chat and engage with someone important in your life is something that certainly will tick one of the boxes of helping to keep you healthy and sane.
5. Do something you love everyday
Laughter and fun cannot be underestimated. My creative 14 year old daughter has made us dress up for dinner this week – each night has been a different theme. Whilst my first thought was that I couldn’t be bothered, it has been fantastic! Lots of laughs and a great way to connect as a family. Personally I love to exercise – especially the stuff that has me lying on the floor breathless and totally spent at the end. Find what you love and make sure to include it daily. Here are some ideas: Escape with a great book; play music really loud and dance around your bedroom; meditate; bake; start a veggie garden… anything.
Whilst COVID-19 is testing us in so many ways, I believe it is also providing us with opportunities to grow and reflect in ways that would otherwise never have been possible. We can’t change the situation we find ourselves in right now, so my suggestion is to go with the flow, you might surprise yourself in what you discover.