Couch slouch to virtual virtuoso
4 wellness tips to get your head and body back in the game as life reboots
We’ve all heard the stories. The global lockdown has turned normally productive folks into pajama-wearing slackers who (if you believe TikTok) guzzle wine and dance around in horse heads all day. While I personally have never danced in a horse head, I do see an upcoming challenge. Life will reboot and all of us are likely to rejoin the daily battle of kids, commuting and competitive coworkers. After several months of semi-seclusion, this will be a big change. Here are four health and wellness tips to help get our heads and bodies back in the game.
1. Refocus the mind
In speaking with long-time remote workers, a number of common themes emerge. The first is your workspace – it must actually feel like a space for work. Consider your pre-pandemic desk setup and try to replicate it at home with a comfortable chair and sufficiently large monitor(s). Gather the necessary supplies (flash drives, coffee cups, etc.) and place appropriately. Your muscle memory will take over and as you reach for the phone charger it will be right there, keeping you engaged with your assignment.
2. Reestablish your routine
Wandering around all morning and “reporting” to work when you feel like it sounds great but won’t cut it for most people. We need a routine. Decide on a time to begin your work day and stick to it. Schedule breaks, include time for meals and be sure to put on actual clothes (so you’re ready for that surprise Zoom). Close your door and be sure to agree on rules with the other household members (no happy hours before 5pm). But the most important piece of advice is perhaps the most surprising – don’t ever work in the kitchen. The distraction potential is huge and apparently, too tempting to resist.
Scientifically proven benefits of maintaining a healthy mental outlook include:
- Reduced stress and general anxiety
- Less moodiness and non-productive thinking
- Increased self-esteem (due to part to taking control)
- Better, more lasting relationships (no one likes a disorganized grouch)
3. Exercise your body
Sure, the couch looks cozy, but no one ever got ahead by taking up permanent residence there. Your body (like your brain) needs exercise to stay sharp and responsive. So create a plan that gets you out of your chair. Schedule short walks to loosen up and allow your eye muscles to relax by refocusing on objects further away. If you’re on a call that doesn’t require taking notes, use the time to lift a weight with the opposite hand. It can be anything that provides resistance, even a household item. Got a trampoline? Jump on it for ten minutes. Anything that modestly elevates your heart rate will work, and exercise is proven to circulate beneficial neurotransmitters throughout the body.
In our slowly normalizing world, some activities will take much longer to safely resume. Traditional wellness and gym classes come to mind – experts agree that viruses are more easily spread in this environment. But in many cases, virtual classes can solve this problem while providing the exertion and social interaction we crave. If you’re looking to get fit, join an exercise or Zumba group and work out with professional guidance on a pre-determined schedule. Yoga is also a great virtual option. The benefits of this 5,000+ year old practice are well-documented – it can improve sleep, increase flexibility and promote heart health while reducing inflammation, chronic pain and depression. Paired with a nutrition plan, we all have the potential to emerge from lockdown ready to tackle the new world.
Bodyworks for Your Health
We all hope that recent encouraging news about COVID-19 vaccine trials, new treatment options and a rebounding economy mark a turning point in this fight. However, we also place the highest value on the continued safety and health of our clients, staff and practitioner-partners. Bodyworks now offers virtual versions of our trusted wellness programs, including a virtual health fair week for your company featuring fitness and yoga classes along with sleep and weight loss strategy consultations for just $750. Our virtual wellness programs empower you to safely adopt and maintain a healthy lifestyle. Take our nutrition survey, then call us and get ready for the reboot!