When we feel low, moving our body and eating for nutrition are two of the simplest, most beneficial practices we can commit to.  They’re also often the most challenging.

Helping many clients work through body-related issues, I know they affect the majority more than the minority.

Following on from my last post, this is part two of the 5 Best Practices When Feeling Lonely, Isolated, or Alone.   The 5 practices are not in order and any of the practices will help you over none.

What I share here will undoubtedly serve you in any season of life!

Part one shared Practice 1: Allowing for our feelings (read it here).

Part two, (this post), shares Practice 2: Moving your body, and Practice 3: Positive eating habits.

Part three, (coming soon) is Practice 4: Mind Management, & Practice 5: Connection.

But first, “do you want to feel better”?

Daft question surely, and yet I know that when I feel low I often do not want to don the athleisure and get moving.  Hunkering down on a comfy chair and binge-watching Netflix (Grey’s Anatomy was my staple) is far more likely to hit the spot.  Throw in a good helping of crappy food because I ‘deserve’ the comfort and it’s a downward spiral of choices perfected.

Listen, I KNOW that doing what’s good for our bodies, IS NOT THE PREFERRED CHOICE!  It’s the hard choice.

BUT… it’s a hard choice short-term for a preferred gain long-term.  Let’s get to it…


2.  Move your body

It’s simple.  Move the body, feel better. I was at my worst when I began walking consistently and I’ve shared extensively the extent to which I believe it SAVED. MY. LIFE.   My exercise habit is now 13 years strong!

If you follow me on social for any time, you’ll no doubt have seen me working out in one form or another daily.  It’s not accidental.  The positive impact on my physical and mental health as a result of exercise is one I know simply cannot and will not default on.

You don’t always feel like it, but taking action to move your body creates a state change out of which you give yourself a chance to feel better.

I’ve already covered exercise in detail so won’t reinvent the wheel, the posts are here:

Watch the video
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How I began walking during the toughest time in my life!

Read the post
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If we know a thing’s good for us, why do we stop?  It’s not because we want to.  This post explains how to make this life-giving habit stick.

Watch the video
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Finally, if you find your mind’s all over the spot when you go walking, giving it this instruction can help.

 

One other thing I’d add is that if you’ve got time alone, and not much to do, then rather than squeeze all your exercise into one time-slot, spread it throughout your day.   If you use a chart or tracker it’ll give you something to keep ticking off as you go through the day which will make you feel good!

Download my FREE tracker here.


3.  Positive Eating Habits

This one I know from experience can be a REAL EFFORT OF DISCIPLINE, especially when difficult emotions are in the mix.

For some, the struggle is in making better food choices in the first place and eating healthier dishes.  For many though (myself included if I allow it), it’s the issue of  MINDLESS SNACKING that catches us out.

We know now more than ever, that what we eat affects not just our body mass, but also our brain.

The brain is THE CONTROL CENTRE OF OUR BODY.  Why do we knowingly choose to  put the wrong fuel in the tank?  Like putting diesel in a petrol engine – there’s usually hell to pay afterwards 😉

Personally, I know that I can’t afford to keep messing with what I call ‘the sugar switch’.  Though I LOVE all the sugary things and all the carb things, it DOES NOT SERVE MY BODY.  I feel stodgy, bloated, and honestly… when is enough ever enough?  It’s not.  Once that first bite or glass is had, then there’ll likely be another.

Where you can, Stick to what you know fuels your body in the best possible way you can afford to and

3 things to try when you find yourself in the kitchen on the scrounge for another snack

  1.  In the moment you find yourself walking into the kitchen, ask yourself why you’re there.  If you just ate an hour ago, it’s probably not hunger.  Doing this can be profound.  You open up space in which to choose alternatively.  To choose better for yourself.
  2. Consider that it’s possible to feel that impulse, that inner scrounge, that restlessness, and do nothing about it.  WOW!  Right? Some people feel stress all day long and do nothing about it so isn’t it possible to feel the need for food (when we’re not in need of it) and to also choose not to itch that scratch?
  3. Ask yourself if the thing you’re going to eat or drink right now is going to hit the spot for you.  Honestly?  Or is it just going to lead to more?  As I said earlier, some of us know all too well that enough is never enough!

I’ve practiced these three over and over, and ended up sending myself out the kitchen empty-handed so many times!  But here’s the wrap:

The more you strengthen your mental muscle to resist, the stronger you become at saying ‘NO’ to yourself.


Go Small!

Before I go, if you keep starting and stopping on your efforts, have you tried taking Small Steps Over None?  Taking small steps over no steps means we decrease the amount or the intensity.  I promise this works EVERY SINGLE TIME for me with anything I want to make happen in life.

Read the post here…

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Finally, if you have a permanent connection in your head between diet and exercise to the extent you are always weighing off one against the other, this video may help.  I let go of this mentality over a decade ago and it was a game-changer.

Watch the video
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I hope this is helpful. I know at this time more than ever, we’re all doing our best to navigate this pandemic the best way we can.  There’s a reason for so many other resources I’m able to share here  – because taking control of my diet and exercise habits is 100% the foundation of my health.  Health IS wealth.  Sending love to you and I’ll be back with the final two practices for feeling good amidst this crazy time.

 

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One Comment on “Using Movement & Food to Lift Your Mood During Lockdown

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