Physical wellbeing and during (and after) COVID lockdowns: find out now in 4 easy ways

Feeling a bit tired and worn down? Feeling like your physical health could be having an effect on your wellness and wellbeing?

Read further to find out a few ways to look after your physical wellness and wellbeing during and after COVID.

Hello all. I hope you have been keeping well. If this is your first time to the blog page, welcome. If you have not had a chance, please have a read of the preceding blogs. A few months ago I started to explore the different parts of wellness and wellbeing. So far I have explored the emotional, social, intellectual and environmental parts. In today’s blog I will look to explore the physical side.

Before continuing, it is probably important to establish what we mean when we talk about physical wellness and wellbeing.

When we talk about physical wellbeing, we are talking about what things we can physically do to enhance not only our sense of wellness and wellbeing, but our physical and mental health as well.

The first thing we can talk about is having a routine.

Having a daily routine is important and valuable as it allows us a level of control over our lives and allows us to plan things. Having this level of organisation and control is also a way that one can try and fend off stress and anxiety, things which can be counterproductive to our physical health and wellbeing.

According to WebMD (2020), when stressed, the body releases cortisol from our adrenal glands, a stress hormone, which manifests as muscle pain, headaches, restlessness and irritability, if allowed to build and accumulate. Stress can be alleviated in several ways, from exercise, to medication, to talking to someone. In the case of looking at the physical side, the second thing we can look at is going online.

Picture of a clock

Second, see if your gym is offering online classes, or look YouTube for exercise classes.

Amidst the pandemic, we found ourselves utilising fitness classes. As some may / may not know, before branching on to this wellness blog site to focus on wellness and wellbeing, I had a previous blog site called Fit For Any Age. For those who may have followed me there, I looked at physical and mental fitness. While I am doing similar things here, the name suggested fitness as an advise point for my readers, and I felt it unfair that I have a name of fitness but not operate as a personal training channel: hence the switch. That said, I am proud of my previous blog site and encourage you to check it out.

That said, I would like to share with you a blog from the site:

In this blog I looked at exercising from home during isolation, and I feel that looking back on the site, that some valuable things can still be pulled from it. If you go on YouTube you can find many fun videos that were made at the peak of the first lockdown (March 2020 +), and which can still be watched today if you want a fun and short workout from the comfort of your living room.

One of the most popular and well-known online fitness personalities who made an impact during lockdown was Joe Wicks. He has done some fun videos. Below is an example, but there are several others to choose from on his channel.

YouTube video of Joe Wicks. Property of Joe Wicks and YouTube

For the younger crowd, if you like a bit of fun and a bit of hip hop exercise there is Mike Peele.

YouTube video of Mike Peele. Property of Mike Peele and YouTube

For the older crowd and where it may seem a bit scary and daunting to be following all the complicated aerobics moves, there is also Leslie Sansone and her Walk at Home fitness videos:

YouTube video of Leslie Sansone. Property of Leslie Sansone and YouTube

As you can see, there is a wealth of online exercise and fitness videos available online. You just need to have a look and see what you feel comfortable to do try.

People exercising in a park
People stretching in a class

And remember to stretch.

Many of the time, we exercise and don’t stretch. Stretching has many benefits. For one, it helps us to stave off injuries, helps us to be more flexible and subtle, and keeps our muscles and joints warm. Sitting down for hours on end is not only bad for circulation, but for overall fitness as well. Even if you don’t get the chance to exercise, standing up and having a stretch will help the blood to flow and potentially stave off future injuries.

Finally, it’s not just about the day time. Your physical wellbeing at night can be almost as important as what it is during the day.

When we are stressed and or anxious, our bodies are in fight-or-flight mode. Our bodies are releasing adrenaline, which is causing our heart to beat faster. Remaining in a heightened state of stress and anxiety can make one feel physically exhausted, and without getting enough rest, this can have a knock-on effect and affect our mental health as well, manifesting as anxiety, depression, and other forms of mental illnesses.

One way to help, is to try and find a way to unwind and switch off.

Turn off the phone. Stop checking office emails. Those emails will be there tomorrow. They are not going anywhere.

Find a way to invest in your rest and relaxation. Put on some relaxing music. Turn off the TV and the news. Drink some camomile tea.

Try some apps.

Two apps which I know are quite good are Calm and Headspace.

I have no affiliations to the app companies and I get nothing financially by talking about them. I have tried Calm and have found it a good addition to helping me unwind after a busy day, and I know of others who have benefited from Headspace.

Whether you are Apple or Android or other, these apps are quite well known and should be relatively easy to find.

Picture of a sleeping cat

Before I go, I would like to leave you with a sage advice by Sadhguru Jaggi Vasudev, a well-known Indian yogi and author, on physical health and its link to our mental and spiritual health.

Thank you for taking the time to read my blog, and if you know of anyone who may benefit from / appreciate the blog, please recommend it to them as well. And if you are feeling low and struggling with your mental health, please know that during this difficult time of the pandemic, that there is still help out there and help available. Talk to your GP. Freephone Samaritans 116 123.

There is help out there. You are not alone.

Remember: it’s a journey. It will take time. Have patience in the process. You will get there. Until then, stay happy, stay healthy, and have a lovely time wherever you are on the planet.

And remember: love yourself. And others.

Greg

References:

WebMD. (2020). What Is Cortisol?. Available: https://www.webmd.com/a-to-z-guides/what-is-cortisol. Last accessed 25th July 2021.

A bit about the author:

I am a guy who just over 40, who is sharing a journey of wellness and wellbeing. I am also a mental health professional with a wealth of years of experience in supporting individuals who have challenging mental illnesses and personality disorders. 

Prior to my current professional role, I spent several years supporting members of the community as a fitness professional, assisting individuals with weight loss and health improvement programmes.

I completed a PGDip in Mental Health Nursing in 2013, and an MSc in Advanced Practice in 2016 in which I looked at improving nurses’ level of engagement with patients with challenging personality disorders. 

In 2018 I successfully undertook a Clinical reasoning in Physical Assessments course, and in 2020 I commenced further training in Nurse Prescribing to train toward becoming an Advanced Nurse Practitioner, and will be looking forward to supporting those in the community with mental health support and medicinal support.

In 2015 I also undertook a Mentorship for practice (BSc Hons) course and have been supporting future nurses with their training and development. I have also recently supported a Healthcare Assistant Staff toward training in and successfully passing and achieving a Foundation Degree in Mental Health Nursing.

In my current role I am a person looking to support the physical and mental health and wellbeing of the individual. Don’t think of me as a motivational coach or speaker. Think of me more as a wellness guide, as I use my mental health training and experience to suggest and advice ways to enhance your wellness and wellbeing. If you are struggling with your mental health though, please seek advice from a medical professional such as your GP.

I believe that it is a journey. It is a process. It will take time. But we will get there.

Remember: it’s a journey. It will take time. Have patience in the process. You will get there. Until then, stay happy, stay healthy, and have a lovely time wherever you are on the planet.

And remember: love yourself. And others.

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