Living in lockdown
I must confess that I have felt very uneasy in recent weeks. I have found out that I secretly like a bit of a fixed rhythm. Suddenly I’m spending days inside and my dining table has also become my workplace. The food in the cupboards is calling to me all day too. Of course, I’m working at home for a good cause and I musn’t complain; fortunately I’m still healthy. But it is difficult, and it has taken me a while to fix a new rhythm for structure in the day and to maintain a healthy diet.
Here are my tips for getting a successful rhythm to your day :
Make sure you start the day with fixed tasks
Set your alarm clock at a fixed time and get out of bed immediately. If, like me, you just must have a cup of tea before you can do anything, then don’t sit for too long, lingering over it.
A few minutes of meditation can set the tone for the day.
Thinking about breakfast, I try to vary that a lot, but some of my favourites are :
Whole grain muesli with Greek yogurt and sometimes with pieces of apple or banana
Banana egg pancakes with a teaspoon of pure peanut butter and some coconut chips
Scrambled eggs on wholemeal toast with fresh tomatoes
Make a daily schedule
I noticed at the beginning of this quarantine I went for a ‘go with the flow’ attitude to the day and at 10am I was still in my pyjamas, teeth unbrushed and feeling a little lethargic. A schedule is also a must if you’re at home with the children. So in the morning after breakfast:
Shower, brush teeth, do hair, possibly put on some make-up if I feel like it;
Check and answer any emails
Fruit break (with some yogurt or nuts for the proteins)
Clear down email boxes of old emails and empty the ‘trash’ folder
Do a short workout
Check my website and start writing the next blog for it.
Go out for a long walk to get some fresh air and sunshine (and that much needed shot of Vitamin D from it) – with social distancing, of course.
Enjoy some television with my husband and scan social media.
Bed at a reasonable time.
How do you keep eating healthily?
It is best to go to the supermarket as little as possible. I make very extensive and healthy shopping lists so that I only have to go to the supermarket once a week. Buy fresh and frozen vegetables and fruit, whole wheat bread, some oily fish and chicken pieces (enough for the freezer), etc. Make a plan of meals for the whole week.
Make sure you drink enough
Drinking enough is important, make sure you keep drinking enough water at home. I always have a glass of water on the table while I’m working, and I also have a glass of water with my cups of coffee. It’s so important for all your vital organs, and a well-hydrated brain also helps you think with more clarity.
Make sure you keep moving every day. My husband and I go outside regularly or put a yoga session or workout on the television. If you have children you could put some music on and dance around the room for a while. If you have older children, how about a fun kids workout on YouTube every afternoon, an obstacle course in the garden or a competition that runs to the other side of the garden as quickly as possible, and back – things to help them lose all that youthful energy. And just maybe they may want to help in the house too?!
For me this is easier when the sun is shining. It makes it a pleasure to go outside every now and then and the house always looks brighter when the sun’s rays come in. My house has also never been so clean and I’ve taken the opportunity to clear out cupboards and get rid of stuff – things I’ve been promising to do for years !
In terms of food, there is more temptation on the one hand being at home with a full fridge/freezer and cupboards, but less so on the other:
- You should be going to the supermarket less often and, therefore, be tempted less often to buy something unhealthy.
- If you have birthday celebrations at work on a weekly basis then you’ll no longer be tempted by the birthday cake on offer.
- Where you normally come home tired from work and quickly pop a meal in the microwave, you now have much more time to cook tasty and healthy meals and try something new. Go through those old cookbooks again or browse the internet for tasty and healthy low carb/high protein recipes. Tip: Maybe do it together with your family and choose something you all like. Success guaranteed!