Suffering from the lockdown blues?
You’re not alone.
It’s Saturday the 14th of March. I’ve left my lovely little house in London and travelled to Yorkshire. I’m preparing to spend the next (goodness knows how many) months indoors with my family.
We’re now sitting in the living room. I’ve already had three glasses of wine, two pieces of cake and I’m one sarcastic comment away from an argument.
Safe to say I’m feeling pretty miserable.
This stroppy mood will last for around two weeks. It will be accompanied by many gin and tonics, chocolate oranges and Chinese takeaways.
Stress eating syndrome
I’ve painted a bad picture of myself. Usually I am an active, positive and healthy person! I promise!
I was suffering from a serious case of stress eating syndrome.
The lockdown blues had hit me hard.
Finally I’ve cheered up! My sarcasm has softened (at mum’s request) and I’ve agreed to stop feeling so damn sorry for myself.
Yet I’m still haunted by my time spent binge eating and rehearsing for my one woman show, “Lauren: The Coach Potato”…
With weight gain.
My belly is teasing me every day and I’ve had enough.
It’s time to take control with some healthy living.
I’ve put together five rules, tried and tested in the past, for a simple and easy way to reintroduce a healthy diet.
Hopefully I will explain the guidelines a little more clearly than Boris.
RULE ONE: SWEET FOOD SUNDAYS
No sugar Monday to Saturday.
Cutting out sugar during the week is the best way to introduce a healthy diet. In the natural world, refined sugar doesn’t exist, so try to put less in your body.
“But sweet food makes me happy!”
I hear you.
So keep it to a Sunday. Get your cravings out of the way at the weekend so you’re ready to hit the ground running on Monday with healthy food.
This means you can also enjoy your new lockdown baking hobby!
(Not so) FUN FACT: Did you know 200g of chocolate has the same amount of calories as 8 chicken breasts?! But don’t let that put you off…
RULE TWO: CUT OUT ALCOHOL
Bye bye hangovers!
Lockdown is a great time to cut out your alcohol. Instead of mourning our country’s pub loss, use it as an excuse to get healthy.
This will improve
● Mental Health – reducing depression and anxiety
● Energy levels
● Sleeping Patterns
● Your skin
● Weight Gain (1 pint = 1 large slice of pizza)
RULE THREE: CALORIE COUNTING
Easier than it sounds!
Work out how many calories you need for your BMI here.
This is a great way to continue eating your usual diet. It simply requires a little portion restriction or ingredient swap.
Check the labels on your food to work out how many calories are in what.
RULE FOUR: REGULAR MEALS
3 meals a day and 1 snack
When locked up in the house it’s so easy to think-
“Hmm, I wonder what’s in the cupboard?…”
Be honest – You know what’s in the cupboard. You don’t need to eat it.
Sticking to the 3 meals a day with 1 snack rule will cut out any unnecessary munching.
You’ll also begin to appreciate that little afternoon nibble and cup of tea.
This goes hand in hand with our final rule –
RULE FIVE: MEAL PLANNING
Although it is sometimes fun to throw meals together, having a weekly plan will help you stick to your diet.
It reduces the urge to order in. It stops the “I don’t know what to cook tonight” thoughts half an hour pre-meal preparation.
Sticking to schedule helps to keep you on track and brings lockdown back to reality. Perhaps Soul II Soul were singing about Meal Planning after all…
If we add these rules into the everyday, we will beat the lockdown body blues.
Let’s start preparing for post-covid life now!
I am a London based freelance copywriter and content marketer. Also a performer, I am passionate about health, lifestyle, theatre and the arts.