Before lockdown I was never very good at getting off my bottom and doing some exercise. Working on A&G means long hours glued to the computer – something I am very happy to prioritise over a sweaty Zoom exercise class. But because Covid has curtailed our usual activities (and, quite frankly, now that I’ve turned 68) I have developed a more positive mindset about keeping fit and healthy during lockdown.
Doesn’t have to be an hour...
We can ALWAYS find ten minutes. Yes we can. So ease yourself in slowly with some very gentle yoga. You just need a small space and a towel (or yoga mat if you have one). Not only does this YouTube video by our friend Maddy give your body a slow (and perhaps much needed) stretch – with the uplifting sound of birdsong in the background – you will feel fantastic afterwards. Do it before your shower/make up/day starts and you will not regret it.
As we get older it is really important to practise balancing. Even if it is standing on one leg when you put your pop socks on! Try doing it while you are ironing, waiting for the kettle to boil or watching The Crown. Doesn’t have to be for long, 30 seconds will do it. Or you could follow Marvellous-Mother-In-Law’s example and buy a wobble cushion.
Put one foot in front of the other… every day
When the weather is grey and drizzly it’s oh so easy to stay inside in the warm stuffing a heavily buttered crumpet into your mouth. I won’t bang on about how good walking in the fresh air is for you – you know that already. I find walking (socially distanced obvs) with friends is best because you seem to walk further when you are happily chatting. The time flies by.
So ring your friends up and get something in your diaries for every day next week. And the week after. If no-one’s available, don’t let that stop you – just pull on the wellies and a mac and get out there. Remember you will warm up as you walk, so layers are the most practical option. And have fun – splash in the puddles (that’s one of the reasons why you’re wearing wellies) and throw up some autumn leaves!
Join a revolution…
We have around 300 joints and 800 muscles in our bodies and sitting on a chair (watching TV, glued to a computer etc) repeatedly freezes our spine in a flexed position. Think of the stereotypical posture of an elderly person. That’s what we’re moving towards, faster than a Japanese bullet train. To find out how to counteract this read how one short daily routine can give your body the best opportunity to stay supple and working well.
While you’re in bed…
Making love burns almost as many calories as a 30-minute jog. Thanks Daily Mail. Good to know. You can also utilise your very comfortable mattress to do some lazy woman stretches. For example, improve your leg flexibility by sitting in the middle of the bed with your feet as wide as they can go over the edges and hold. Imagine you’re going into the splits. And check out these six easy stretches that you can do before you get out of bed every morning.
You might also like to consider exercising your brain on a daily basis. Download the free ScrabbleGo app or do a crossword if you like word games, or Sudoko if you like maths.
My last tip is to pour half a glass of wine at a time. Or am I the only one who is drinking a little more than I should during lockdown?!?
Lots more wellbeing tips and tricks here