So you’re in lockdown.
The underlying feeling of uncertainty during this time is particularly exhausting to say the least.
Our hearts go out to you and we want you to know that you are not alone.
To help support your health, we’re sharing our top 5 Health-Coach approved, supportive strategies that cut through any lockdown lifestyle patterns that can keep our bodies feeling stagnant, our minds feeling tired and feelings of frustration during these times.
With these holistic health coach approved methods under your belt, your mental, emotional and physical well being will be on the rise, gearing you for a successful re-emergence into the fast paced nature of every life when restrictions ease.
Are you ready to dust off the cobwebs and get started?
Make your Mental Health #1
It’s absolutely pivotal that we create space for the spectrum of feelings and thoughts that are rising to the surface right now, and put structures in place to ease the intensity as much as possible.
If you are struggling to cope or need someone to talk to right now, please reach out to Beyond Blue or call Lifeline on 13 11 14.
A daily ritual that can bolster our mental wellbeing which is tried and true, plus well researched, is the practice of journaling.
Did you know you can actually rewire yourself for resilience and appreciation?
It is biologically impossible for our brain to fixate on negative thoughts while we’re thinking about things that we’re thankful for. While this may sound like surface level positive thinking, almost syrupy sweet and surface level, but the creation of a routine in which you tune into just a couple of things that have been good in your day, puts down new neurological pathways that excavate a less stress-stricken response from your nervous system.
Unfortunately, mental wellbeing is still a part of health that is considered separate to the rest of our body. But in fact, our body’s systems are very much interconnected.
The brain is a fat-feasting organ that ploughs through energy as we go about our day. Essential fatty acids from oily fish like mackerel and salmon, and plant based sources including flax, walnuts and chia nourish our brain, but an adequate quantity of these foods can be difficult to include in our diet.
We love the simultaneous supplement and whole food that is Cod Liver Oil, which provides ample EFAs to boost cognitive function, along with fat soluble vitamins like vitamin A and D to bolster whole body health.
Put your mental health and brain’s wellbeing at the top of your task list.
Check out a little gift for you at the bottom of the post that we normally reserve for 5th Element Wellness members and staff. Read on and keep an eye out for this supportive resource.
Prioritise sleep – and plenty of it.
Productivity and hustle culture never sleep. And the pressure of lockdown might have you available for longer hours to meet demands from work, family and every obligation in between. Once our sleep routine goes out the window, so does our focus, energy, emotional resilience, appetite regulation, food cravings and in more complex expressions, hormonal balance.
Implementing a regular bedtime each night, with activities to unwind 30-60 minutes beforehand, like reading, “auditory snacks” like a podcast or meditation app, and gentle movement like stretches or yoga, will soothe you to rest and deeper recovery.
Along with this, try 400-800mg of hig- quality magnesium 3-4 hours before hitting the hay. Magnesium has strong anti-stress effects on the body, assisting with lowering cortisol levels, decreasing inflammation, supporting your metabolism and fat loss, increasing bone density, nutrient absorption, boosting immunity, muscle recovery and helping to induce sleep. It’s a mineral that supports nearly every corner of your body’s wellbeing.
Chances are, you need it as it’s a mineral in which most people are depleted.
Consider this your reminder that sleep and rest are your right. You need them to function and to fulfil your obligations to yourself and those around you.
Wind down without boozing up
Alcohol is a complex thing. It’s both a sedative and stimulant which means that while it feels relaxing to have a couple of drinks at knock off (and might even knock you off to sleep) it actually raises your heart rate and ramps up your body’s detoxification pathways to clear it from your system. Before bed, we want to be as calm as possible and alcohol is counterproductive for this, disrupting our sleep quality and hindering our energy and focus for the following day.
Try selecting just a couple of days per week that include alcohol and keep your work or study days booze-free to safeguard your energy levels. It’s also nice to keep alcohol as something you enjoy and savour.
Are there any activities from your past that you’d like to reconnect with, to give back to your body and mind?
Drawing, trying new recipes or even reorganizing your office or bedroom can offer some fresh stimulation and a shift of focus.
On the note of energy management, our number one go-to for mineral, stress and energy support are Synerplex Electrolytes.
This tub of magic contains the ideal ratio of potassium, sodium, phosphorus, chlorides, magnesium, bicarbonates and sulphate to replenish fluids for muscular and energy recovery, plus they help with detoxification and even relieve bloating and fluid retention. Unfortunately, standard tap and filtered water these days has nearly all the natural minerals stripped out from them. So replenishing these minerals with a good quality electrolyte has a tremendous cascade of benefits. Electrolytes are so much more than hangover cures! They’re hugely important for optimal wellbeing.
Befriend consistent meal times
Many of us struggle, or can at least relate, to the experience of emotional eating, eating out of boredom or craving some kind of comfort food.
Sugary, processed or fast foods put our blood sugar levels through the ringer with energy peaks and crashes. This can contribute to a foggy head, low energy, weight gain, sluggish digestion and, frustratingly, perpetuated food cravings.
Without feeling guilt or shame, pick yourself up, start afresh and try this for a more friendly time with your food:
Satiate and Hydrate
- Aim for a palm size portion of protein with each meal and try to eat every 4 hours to prevent blood sugar crashes and possible “hanger” (your colleagues and family will thank you)
- Drink more water. You’ve got to, for your entire body. You’re a more functional organism and can be even more incredible when you’re hydrated.
- Load up on non starchy vegetables and salad in your earlier meals and try including starchy veggies (think sweet potato, beets, parsnips and carrot) and whole grain carbohydrates in your evening meal to help boost serotonin and ease you to sleep.
Move, sweet thang!
We’re indoors. We’re sitting more than usual. And the pull of the sofa and sturdy plot of a new TV series is calling.
But, getting daily movement is imperative for physical and psychological health. It makes us feel better. It creates more energy. We need it.
And it doesn’t need to be complicated. Again, routine is a powerful tool that will help get the ball rolling when you don’t feel motivated to move.
Create a daily step goal and get outside with a friend for a brisk walk. Try to do this at the same time daily, whether it be in the morning, part way through the day to break up your work schedule, or as an evening ritual.
The stimulation of being outside, in a park or on a nature trail if you have access, is incredibly supportive for our nervous system. It also means we’re better able to get exposure to natural sunlight. Vitamin D is a key booster for our immunity but in these cooler months in the southern hemisphere, getting enough rays can be difficult and we might need supplemental support.
Though it’s a devastating blow that gyms and studios are closed, try dialing in to online classes and attending with friends or gym buddies to stay linked to your community.
If you’re in need of more focused support with nutrition and online coaching, reach out to us here.
To help get you on the path to feeling fresh throughout lockdown – or to launch out of it with excellence, we’ve created the The Better Health Bundle: the Lockdown Edition all strategically designed to boost immunity, energy and cognitive health.
Incorporating Cod Liver Oil, Synerplex Electrolytes, Fusion Magnesium Advanced and Vitamin D, and your health will be primed to launch you feeling incredible out of lockdown.