If you’re still working from home, it can be hard to get back into a healthy routine.
For the large amounts of us who had to suddenly pack up the office and set up camp in our kitchens, the last six months have been a steep learning curve — particularly when it came to recognising the importance of our wellbeing, as well as separating work and life when they exist in the same space.
And although we may have started adapting to life at home, many of us haven’t got back into our normal routines, with our normally healthy diets and regular exercise being shunned in place of pre-curfew pints and any lingering ‘eat out to help out’ offers.
Unfortunately, it doesn’t look like lockdown measures are going to be ending any time soon — which is why it’s best to get back into a healthy routine at home now, rather than waiting for all of this to blow over.
If you’re struggling then don’t worry — we’ve got you covered. In this post, we’ll be covering some tangible tips on how to maintain a healthy routine and lifestyle while working from home. Read on to find out more.
Create a meaningful morning routine
If you want to get back into a healthy routine while you’re working from home, a great way to start is with your morning. A more mindful morning routine will set you up for the day, helping you to feel more focused and productive — as well as healthy.
There are a few changes you can make to your morning routine that are healthy for both your mind and body, such as easing into the day with 5-10 minutes of meditation or gentle stretching, or getting up straight away when your alarm goes off rather than snoozing it nine times (we find putting your alarm on the other side of the room helps).
But most important in the morning is what you eat for breakfast.
Instead of grabbing something unhealthy or skipping breakfast completely (which will only cause you to get hungry and snack later in the morning), fuel your body with goodness.
Eggs are a great option for breakfast because they’re rich in protein, as well as other nutrients like vitamin D (which you might not be getting enough of if you’re inside a lot). Eggs don’t have to be high calorie either, as this low fat baked omelette recipe suggests — it all depends on how you cook them. Making an egg white omelette gives you a protein boost to fuel your day without any sugar spikes and unnecessary fats.
Set yourself goals — and be realistic
We’ve all got various health and fitness goals that we’d like to achieve. Perhaps you want to lose weight, or get rid of your tum? Maybe you want to complete a marathon next year, or climb a mountain?
Whatever it is, set these goals and work to them — but be realistic. If you want to lose weight, remember that three stone isn’t going to drop off in the next month. It’s going to be a steady process of building towards your long-term goals, especially if you want to do it properly. For example, extreme weight loss diets might seem like a quick fix for losing lockdown weight, but chances are you’ll almost definitely put it back on when your diet stops. Rapid weight loss diets are notorious for weight loss that is hard to maintain.
Instead, aim for a more gradual diet and food healthy choices, paired with regular exercise (more on that later). Small and steady changes that you will actually stick to mean you’re much more likely to succeed with a weight loss plan.
Of course, some people struggle more with weight loss and may want additional help in the form of weight loss medications. Be warned — there are a lot of bogus and dangerous weight loss products out there that can do more harm than good, from teas to pills to patches. Orlistat is the only UK-licensed weight loss pill, and you need to get it prescribed. If you want to go down this route, then you should research how Orlistat works and read Orlistat reviews from real users first, before speaking to your doctor or pharmacist. And remember: you still need to maintain a healthy diet and exercise plan.
However you do it, don’t beat yourself up if you don’t drop five pounds overnight. Be kind to yourself, improve your eating habits, add more exercise into your schedule, and allow yourself a celebratory treat when you do hit those milestones.
Slowly incorporate more exercise into your schedule
Getting your daily dose of exercise can seem daunting to begin with, especially when we’re told we should be hitting at least 150 minutes of activity a week. Where are you going to fit that in? And can you even do two and a half hours of exercise?!
Don’t worry — any exercise is better than nothing, and you can gradually work your way up to this target. No one’s expecting you to do a 10-mile run on day one.
Like we mentioned earlier, set yourself small, achievable goals to start with and build your way up to bigger, more intense work-outs.
Cardiovascular exercises — the ones that get your heart pumping — are the ones you should focus on. This could be anything from jogging to swimming to cycling or a HIIT class.
If you don’t feel comfortable going to the gym or pool just yet, there are still plenty of ways you can keep fit. Heading out for a gentle jog or walk around your local park can help you to stay fit and fill your lungs with fresh air (and if you’re feeling particularly sluggish after six months of lockdown, this is a great way of easing yourself back into exercise).
You can also try out some exercise videos or online classes in the comfort of your own home, which makes staying healthy and losing weight that bit easier.
Sort out your snacking
We can admit it — being stuck at home, constantly yo-yoing between bored and anxious, and being stationed in the kitchen means that we’ve all been hitting the snacks pretty hard.
If you’re anything like us, you’ve probably been doing the same. It’s all too easy to open that fridge door or peer into the cupboard, and before you know it you’ve demolished a sharing bag of crisps (emphasis on the ‘sharing’) and a whole pack of custard creams. And that’s just in the morning.
If you want to get back into the healthy routine you were working to before lockdown, then being firm with yourself and sorting out your snacking habits is a must. Lots of snacky foods — like biscuits, chocolate and crisps — are high-calorie, high-fat and high-sugar. Not only that — they don’t fill you up either, or give you any of the nutrients your body needs. The end result is detrimental to both your weight and your health, completely undoing any exercise or healthy meal plans you’ve been following.
Of course, you don’t have to ditch snacks completely (we’re not animals). Simply swapping out these unhealthy options and choosing your snacks more carefully will make a huge difference.
There are tons of healthy snacks you can have instead, such as fruit like bananas (which are great for slow-release energy) and vegetable sticks with low-fat cottage cheese (celery and carrots work well).
And if you need a bit of variation from your classic fruit and veg, then you can try low-calorie popcorn (there are loads of different flavours), filling and fibre-rich nuts, snacking cheese bars, or making your own recipes. Who said healthy snacking couldn’t be fun?
Getting back into a healthy routine when you’re working from home might not seem easy to start with, but it is achievable. Make positive changes to your lifestyle, diet and exercise routine, and you’ll soon see a difference in your health, weight and happiness.
Author Bio: Laura May is Digital Editor at Just Another Magazine. ‘We write about beauty, fashion, lifestyle, relationships, travel, trends and anything else that matters to you. Name throwing you off? Don’t take it too seriously – we intend to stand out from the crowd.’