1. Fuel your body
We’re all just a little more stressed these days. The current pandemic has really tested our mental and physical mettle, and it’s easy to reach for comfort foods as a way to temporarily ease the anxiety. However, now more than ever, it’s especially important that we protect and optimize our overall health by fueling our body with the proper nutrients. Be sure to include more fiber-rich, plant-based foods in your diet to maintain a lower body weight and boost your immune system. Think vegetables, fruits, legumes, and whole grains. And for something sweet, opt for natural, whole food options like bananas, sweet potatoes, and berries.
2. Stay active
Staying active during a pandemic can keep you physically healthy, but it can also boost your mental well-being, too. If you can’t get to the gym, try an at-home workout, or get outside and enjoy the fresh air (some extra vitamin D can’t hurt — just remember to wear sunscreen). Sticking with an exercise routine can help lower your risk of developing certain health conditions such as:
High blood pressure
Several types of cancer such as breast, colorectal, and lung
Aside from these benefits, a good workout can boost your mood and brighten your overall outlook. And who doesn’t need that right now?
3. Get enough sleep
Our bodies need adequate sleep in order to stay healthy and function properly, especially during times of extreme stress. Given the real and tangible threats from COVID-19, it’s normal to experience some level of sleep deficiency. However, it’s important to understand that most of us are in a position to control our behaviors and reduce the effects of the pandemic on our sleep schedule. Remember to keep a consistent routine throughout the day and expose yourself to natural sunlight whenever possible. This is another area where exercise helps as it can significantly improve your sleep quality. Lastly, be sure to avoid drinking too much caffeine and avoid it completely after 2 p.m.
4. Practice mindfulness
At this moment, our lives are filled with potentially unsettling changes. We’ve had to adapt to a “new normal” in many instances, and that can heighten anxiety and create additional stress. Practicing mindfulness is a great way to live in and accept the present; it can reduce worry and help us to be intentional about our daily activities. To practice mindfulness throughout your day, consider trying the following:
Start your day with 1-2 minutes of deep breathing
Download a mindfulness app and try a guided meditation
Take a walk outside and notice the sounds, colors, and natural elements around you
Do a few yoga stretches
There are many different ways to practice mindfulness. Find what works best for you and your routine.
Staying Healthy at ATC Fitness
The team at ATC Fitness is committed to keeping you healthy during these uncertain times. Our facilities are open and abiding by closely-governed state regulations to ensure a clean and safe environment for your next workout. To learn more about how we’re prioritizing your health and safety, check out our FAQ page.
If you’re ready to begin your wellness journey, be sure to check out our gym membership options and apply today!
With COVID-19 still at the forefront of all our minds, social distancing precautions and regulations don’t seem to be going away anytime soon. Let’s be real, living in a pandemic can cause extreme stress and anxiety for every age group. Social distancing can make us feel lonely, which can ultimately increase anxiety in our daily lives. Luckily, health professionals and the CDC have worked to provide us with methods for reducing the stress and anxiety brought to light by social distancing.
5 Ways to Cope With the Stress of Social Distancing
By learning how to cope with stress and anxiety in healthy ways, you can help encourage your entire community to stay strong during this pandemic. Here are a few recommendations for reducing stress and anxiety while taking social distancing seriously:
1. Stay active.
Staying active and exercising regularly is one of the best ways to reduce stress and anxiety. When we participate in physical activity, our body releases endorphins which in return reduce stress, improve sleep and more. During this pandemic, it’s important to put our nervous energy to use and get active.
Aerobic Exercise for Reducing Stress
Aerobic exercise is known to help decrease stress and anxiety levels. If you have ever heard the term “runner’s high,” this is what we are referring to. Aerobic exercise is any form of cardio workout. A few examples of aerobic exercise are:
2. Invest in your mental health.
Another way to cope with stress and anxiety during COVID-19 is to invest in your own mental health. Oftentimes, we tend to push our mental health to the side when we are busy or overwhelmed with everyday life. It’s always a good idea to take a step back and focus on yourself. You can invest in your mental health in a variety of ways, including exercising regularly, finding a hobby, spending time with loved ones and more.
Exercising regularly doesn’t just promote physical well being. It also helps improve your overall mental state. Now more than ever, getting in a routine of staying active is important. Exercising helps improve your mental health by reducing depression, anxiety and overall mood. Oftentimes, people find themselves in a gym letting out some steam on a bad day.
Pick up a hobby.
Another way to invest in your mental health is to pick up a hobby (or continue an existing one.) If you love to be creative, consider letting those juices flow during your free time at home. If you love gardening, now is a great time to put your efforts into seeing your plants thrive! Whatever your hobby may be, social distancing gives you the opportunity to take advantage of a little extra time in the day to have fun doing the things you love most.
3. Take time to be alone.
Sometimes, all you may need to reduce stress and anxiety is a day to yourself. If you live with family or roommates, spending an extensive amount of time together can really put a strain on your mental health. Spending time alone can help re energize your brain and reduce stress and anxiety. There are a variety of ways you can spend time alone, including:
Visiting the gym for a workout
Going for a run
Walking around the park
Taking a nap
4. Encourage your community.
Lastly, an educated and encouraged community is what we need to defeat this virus. When those around us know the proper precautions and social distancing measures to take, we can all live less stressful and anxiety-filled lives. Once you’ve done your research and learn facts regarding COVID-19, talk to your family and friends about what you’ve learned. Encourage others to do the same.
Staying Active at ATC Fitness
At ATC Fitness, the health and safety of our members and employees is our top priority. In response to COVID-19 and health guidelines, we are learning to adapt to the new environment by implementing social distancing, sanitizing all equipment and more. Staying active is a great way to help reduce stress and anxiety right now, so we would love to see you at one of our 18 locations.
To learn more about how ATC Fitness is responding to COVID-19, check out our response today.