Healthy Bodies During COVID-19

Healthy bodies during COVID-19

It is important to take care of your body during these challenging and stressful times through regular exercise and eating well.

Being active is good for our mind and body and continuing to eat nutritious foods is important for our immune system and energy levels.

While we may not be able to engage in sporting activities or the gym in the same way at the moment there are many other things that we can try to remain physically active. When working from home, we need to look for those opportunities to exercise and to continue to eat well and keep healthy snacks and meals handy in the home. Remember there are ways to maintain physical distancing, stay socially connected and keep up healthy activities.

It’s important that you take care of your body as well as your mind during this time and to get further support if you need it.

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    Opportunities during COVID-19 to maintain a healthy body

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    • Connect

      • Build an activity into your regular team meetings.
      • Look for ways to participate in exercise with your family or friends (even if only via Zoom or on the phone). 
    • Organise

      • It is recommended that we exercise for between 2-3 hours per week. You may like to try exercising for 15-30 minutes initially.
      • Set goals and take one action toward your physical goals every day. Try a new form of exercise.
      • Schedule activities throughout the day. Use your calendar or other reminders to get up and move.
      • Prepare a lunch-box of healthy snacks every day and remove temptations that are unhealthy.
      • Remember to stretch regularly through the day.
    • Venture

      • Take up a new physical activity or do something different
        e.g. walk whilst on the phone, do some chair aerobics/stretches, yoga or work outside for part of the day.
      • If you are missing your group gym classes check out YouTube to see what classes are on line and cost free.  There are a number of groups posting new classes on line daily.
      • In addition the Fitness Hub through the University are offering Zoom classes you can pay and book into
      • You may find that you don’t have gym equipment available but consider other novel and innovative ways to manage.  No weights try putting cans of vegetables into a plastic bag and practice squats, lunges and arm exercises.  Or maybe put a backpack on with some books in it and go for a brisk walk. The bare minimum amount of exercise per week is around 2-3 hours.
    • Improve

      • Identify ways to improve your weight, diet or physical activity and set some achievable goals.
      • Eating healthily and well during these difficult times it is even more important. The World Health Organisation has some general tips about healthy eating during the COVID-19 pandemic and recommends reducing your intake of processed foods.
      • Increasing your consumption of health promoting fruits and vegetables can help improve immune function and aid in fighting infections. Doctors for Nutrition have a guide on good nutrition.
      • How you wash your hands! Washing your hands for at least 20 seconds with soap and warm water is recommended as a minimum.
    • Do

      • Stay at home if you or any member of your family are unwell.
      • Get moving – aim for 10,000 steps per day
        (get a device to help count your steps)
      • Make friends with the steps around the house – they are an easy way to help improve your fitness
      • Do exercise activities that you know you enjoy and build them into your normal day.  You are more likely to do them. The World Health Organisation has some resources on staying physically active during self quarantine.
      • Exercise with someone else if possible, even if only via Zoom!  It helps you to maintain focus and keep you accountable.
      • Have your annual flu vaccination (This is offered to fixed-term, full-time and casual staff, free of charge.)

    Further information

    Please contact the University’s Workplace Wellbeing Specialist (HR Branch), Ronda Bain