Go for a run, take a bike ride, create a backyard circuit, climb the stairs, or do some yoga. Stuck indoors? Then live stream an exercise class. If you do not have weights, use your body weight to continue building strength. Canadian physical activity guidelines state that people from ages 0-4 years should aim for 180 mins per day; 5-17 years should aim for 60 minutes per day; and 18 years plus should aim for at least 150 minutes of activity per week. Exercise will not only make you feel good, it can decrease stress levels, and help you keep a balanced weight.
If exercise is a part of your life, be sure to get a good night’s rest as the body needs to repair and recover for the next day. Consistency of sleep while keeping the same schedule will help you feel energized and alert, and you will have less stress. Recommended sleep duration for toddlers ages 1-2 is 11-14 hours; preschoolers ages 3-5 is 10-13 hours; and adults ages 18 plus is 7-9 hours. If you find you are tossing and turning and not able to sleep, see the exercise guidelines above. Be sure to move daily as this will help improve your quality of sleep.
Variety and colour in fruits and vegetables are important. Variety allows you to get a balanced amount of vitamins and minerals. Adding things like turmeric, garlic, onions, and ginger can help build your immunity. If you can only get to the store minimally or not at all, then stock up on frozen vegetables, dried legumes, heart healthy grains, lentils, and lean cuts of meat and fish. Remember to drink lots of water.
Gyms closed and recreation centres shut down, not ideal when we are asked to move regularly. However, this is not the time to stop working out. Simply adjust and do things differently. Run, bike, walk, climb stairs, or go for a hike. Exercising outdoors can also give you that daily dose of vitamin D, another mood booster.
Pray, sing, breathe, do yoga, read, and repeat! Now that you are at home more, pick one of these ways to meditate. It will help you worry less, reduce anxiety, and relieve stress, as well as allowing your body to be still and quiet. Two recommended reads are The Happiness Project, by Gretchen Rubin and The Mamba Mentality: How I Play, by Kobe Bryant.
Think positive, throw out the ‘can’ts’ and know that you will make it through. Whatever is tough will only make you stronger!
– MaryAnna Morgan
Certified Personal Trainer