working from home: fitness and food.

21/05/2020 06:30

Like many people, you may have been working from home for some time now. With the various restrictions and regulations put in place to contain the spread of virus, many are left to find alternative ways on how to keep fit and healthy.

Hundreds of thousands of people are missing their daily routine of going to work. It can be a struggle to feel motivated to exercise when you are working from home, especially if your morning commute is from the bed to your desk.

Whether you go to the gym to train competitively or just to keep fit, there is always something that we can do at home to maintain our physical health. Optimise your day by getting at least one exercise activity in.

You could work out at home, run in the park, or walk to the supermarket instead of driving or taking the bus. Exercising releases endorphins in your brain, while would allow you to be more alert and productive at work.

tips and guides to stay fit and healthy while at home. 

free workouts and classes

1. nike training club

The Nike Training Club mobile app offers a number of workouts with videos and instructions for a self-paced workout. While there is an option to access paid premium content, the free version is probably enough if you’re not a competitive athlete. There are numerous yoga and bodyweight guided exercises for toned arms and abs.

If you prefer hitting the road, the Nike Run Club mobile app has the tools you need to run better and maintain your fitness outside of the gym. The app itself includes GPS run tracking, audio guided runs, customised distance challenges, and non-stop motivation from your friends.

tips to stay fit and healthy

2. social media channels

It would take you less than two minute to find home workout programmes by the thousands of fitness enthusiasts on Youtube and Instagram. They range between 10 and 30 minutes, and can include full-body workouts and exercises that target select body parts.

To push yourself a little further, you could even use water jugs, or a stable table or chair to complete some reps of bicep curls or tricep dips.

eat healthy

Staying in shape means eating right, especially during a lockdown. It’s almost impossible to out-train a bad diet. When you’re working from home, it only takes a few steps to access food from the fridge and pantry.

It’s also a great idea to meal prep whenever you can. This will not only help you keep track of your diet, but also your weekly expenditures.

foods for immune system booster

When we work from home, we don’t move around as much. If you’re not burning as much carbs, you could cut about 10% of carbs from your diet. It is easy to over-consume carbs (such as bread, pasta, rice and noodles) since they are considered staples. However, eating too much carbs will make you feel sluggish and sleepy, not what you want when working from home, especially if your bed is only a couple of steps away.

If you’re planning to reduce carbs, you can increase your intake of other healthier foods. Here are some options.

1. blueberries

A study conducted by Dr Jeremy from Reading University found that blueberries boost “concentration and memory” for up to five hours because “the antioxidants in blueberries stimulate the flow of blood and oxygen to [your] brain – and keep the mind fresh”.

2. green tea

Green tea helps you focus for two reasons. It contains caffeine and l’theanine. L’theanine is an ingredient that’s been shown to increase alpha-wave activity, which research shows could relax the mind without inducing drowsiness.

The low-level caffeine concentrate found in tea can also help sustain focus over a long period of time without compromising your sleep. However, do refrain from drinking caffeine at least six hours before you go to bed for a quality sleep.

3. avocado

If you cut down on grain carbs such as rice and pasta, you’ll need to increase your intake of healthy fats.

Not only are avocado toasts delicious and great for Instagram, a study has found that avocado helps the human body absorb up to five times more carotenoids antioxidant molecules, protecting your body against free radical damage.

4. leafy green vegetables

Leafy green vegetables are full of antioxidants and carotenoids, which boost your brain power. Dark leafy greens such as broccoli and spinach are a great source of B vitamins, which can help improve your energy levels, brain function and cell metabolism.

5. fatty fish

Fatty fish contains omega-3 fatty acids which improves cognitive and behavioral function. Some examples of fatty seafood that are high in omega-3s are salmon, mussels, sardines and trout.

6. water

Up to 60% of the adult human body is water. According to H.H. Mitchell, Journal of Biological Chemistry 158, 73% of the brain and heart are composed of water. Even 31% of our bones are water.

If you want to improve your focus and stay healthy, make sure you drink enough water. Though studies have stated that it is not mandatory to drink eight glasses of water a day, you still need to make sure that you feel hydrated. If you feel thirsty, stop whatever you’re doing, get up and pour yourself a glass of water.

Water gives the brain the electrical energy for all brain functions, including thought and memory processes. When you are hydrated, you can think faster, and experience greater clarity and creativity.

7. dark chocolate

Dark chocolate contains a small amount of caffeine, which has been proven to heighten mental alertness. Dark chocolate also contains magnesium, which helps you de-stress and stimulates the release of endorphins and serotonin in your brain, chemicals that can boost your mood.

stick to these habits for as long as you can

We don’t know for sure how long we have to limit our movements, but staying active is not only the key to having good physical health, but also mental health.

It has never been more important to switch off from work on time and engage in your non-work activities. Be it yoga or HIIT, that 30 minutes you spend on yourself will indefinitely change your outlook on your day and life.

Do your best to be as active as you can and pick up some healthy habits to stay fit. If you can, go to the parks or take a lap around the neighbourhood alone and hydrate yourself while you’re at it!