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Quarantine BODY.FOOD.MIND.

An excuse to stay inside and Netflix all day long?

Can I get a “YES, PLEASE!!”


I love a good Dead to Me binge just as much as the next gal or guy, but three(ish) days in I found myself asking....”How much of a good Dead to Me thing is toooo much of a good Dead to Me thing?” (Feel free to keep the answer to yourself, I already watched it all on Friday.)


One thing I have to actively work on, even in normal life, is balance. Sure, spend three straight days with Jen and Judy, it’s a weird time and we all deserve a little distraction. Alas, by week nine or eleven (or whenever you’ve decided to move on to watching all of Grey’s Anatomy in one sitting), mayhaps it’s time to start thinking about how to take care of our bodies in this new sedentary lifestyle. After all, humans’ (de)evolution into a sedentary species is no doubt part of the reason so many of our immune systems were so compromised come the Corona. Fun fact: according to NASM (National Academy of Sports Medicine), “more than 75% of the American adult population does not engage in at least 30 minutes of low-to-moderate physical activity on most days of the week.” During NON-quarantine times…


Yikes. Not totally on us. Current work standards and social norms can make it pretty difficult, but yikes. (Don’t even get me started on our eating and the government-recommended food pyramid…)


Long story short, if we can kick ass with our physical health during a pan-frickin-demic, we will more than likely be kickin’ ass (and just generally a lot healthier) after.


I’m offerin’ up 3 tiers of badassery for you: movement, food, not losing your f**king mind!


Anyhooo, you’re stuck inside. What else are you gonna do?

Totes up to you, my friend, but here are some humble suggestions.


MOVEMENT



1. Work out at home!

There is a whole internet out there full of workout options! No gym is open, so a lot of your favorite spots have moved online. This is a double winner in my book. You get a workout you know you love, and you get to support your favorite spots (especially in the time of a shutdown).

But if you aren’t looking to spend a buck, this is the internet, so anything is possible! I myself have posted several videos on my instagram of workouts you can take yourself through at home. They don’t cost a dime, and might even be… wait for it… kind of fun?


2. Hourly Movement

For some of us, dedicating 30+ workout minutes at a time on our own isn’t the easiest.

Simple solution?

Bite-size pieces!

Set an hourly timer, and when it goes off – movement time! Do the same movement every time or mix it up every hour. Change up the goals, keep it fresh. Maybe one day it’s 10 pushups every hour from 9am to 9pm. Tomorrow it’s 20 squats every hour from 12pm to 5pm. Maybe you just blast Beyonce and give yourself a solid dance break every hour. Whatever gets your body movin’ works for me


3. For the love of all that is holy, Go. Out. Side.

Here are several people who agree: Erin Holt, Dave Asprey, Ben Greenfield, University of MN, to name a few….


Personally, I’m more or less incapable of staying still (that’s a whole other thing… see Section Three below…). I do, however, seem to have a case of the idle snackies. So on to….


FOOD.



Am I hungry? No, but my mouth is bored.


I want to make this perfectly clear: I am not asking anyone to obsess around food. I have spent too many years of my life doing that, and there is a better way to live. BUT I don’t feel great if I continually snack, especially if it’s on popcorn and other such white/tan-to-brown crunchy things. So I’d like to offer up some of the hacks I’ve used to distract my mouth.


But keep in mind, the big thing is, don’t be hard on yourself and don’t let shame get tied up. You are human, and a lot of these snack foods are made in hopes that we’ll chow down like it’s our last meal before hibernation.


1. Water... I’m sure you’ve heard this one, and gosh darnit, I wish it weren’t such a charm, but WATER. If you stay hydrated between meals, you stay satiated. Right now, as I type this article, my hand wants to grab some of that sweet air-popped corn, but instead I grabbed agua. Turns out my body really loves being hydrated. Not only are hunger cues taking a back seat, I’m taking care of myself on a cellular level. But water is BOOOORING. Ugh, it sure can be. Especially if you are a big diet soda fan. Artificial sweeteners can actually dampen our taste buds and alter the way we taste food. So much so that water can actually taste “bad.” (That’s a different topic, stay tuned, I’ll get you some interesting articles to peruse.) In the meantime! Liven it up. Add citrus. Either a spritz, or cut some yummy fruits into a pitcher of water and leave it in your fridge. They also sell water bottles with fruit in the bottom holders (that is the technical term), SEE! Or tea! Caffeine is a diuretic, so aim for something caffeine-free like a rooibos, peppermint, chamomile, etc. Not to mention teas have pretty bomb ass benefits on their own. My mom just got me THIS BRAND and I’m low-key obsessed.

2. Plan Healthy Snacks that Satisfy Your Craving. You know you’re going to be locked up in your home (or at an office after all this) with nothing but snacks and your willpower… and maybe a roommate who is testing your willpower because they are also eating your snacks… pretty damn quickly... SLOW DOWN, JENNIFER! Sorry. I’m back.

The point is, if you know it’s happening, you can plan for it. Personally, my snack of choice is crunchy AF – preferably corn that has been doused in unpronounceable oils and popped past perfection – but any crunchy will do. So I prepare. Carrots? Crunchy AF. If they aren’t hitting the spot exactly, I toss in some hummus, babaganoush or guacamole, because yum. Other good alternatives, for me, are kale chips, Mary’s Crackers, green beans, celery, various nuts, you get it.

The other big thing? I didn’t buy popcorn.

Wouldn’t have been the end of the world if I did… but it would have been the end of the popcorn within the first 15 minutes of entering my home.

Here are some ideas for good, healthy, yummy snacks:


3. Space It Out. Sometimes the water thing just doesn’t cut it because… it’s water… what can I say? I love bubbles. If I find if I have that insatiable crunchy crave, and ain’t nothin gonna cut it but that corn filled with air, I space it out. Kind of like a reward system. I give myself a task. Do the laundry. Read 60 pages for book club (yeah, I’m in a book club). Shave the cat and then glue all of its hair back on. Whatever the task is, put that between you and your next snack. This is also a great opportunity (judgement free) to notice what might come up for you in between snackies. Are you always thinking about food? Are you judging wanting food? Are you racing through the task? Are you super chill and all like, Kinsey calm down we don’t all have past or current eating disorders? (kudos to you) Food can be a very personal and highly emotional thing for some of (a lot of) us. Rather than talking down to yourself, use it as an opportunity to explore your relationship with it. Maybe even journal!


Which brings me to PART 3!


MINDFULNASTY.


I mean, Mindfulness.


You’ve got some movement hacks. You’ve got the eating tricks. Now we juice up your brain.

This may shock you, but this is the hardest part for me. We can practice these together, and as with anything I write about, I’m always grateful to hear suggestions from you! (Cuz we’re smarter together!)

That being said, there are some things that really make life magical… when I bother to do them.