5 WAYS TO BE BODY POSITIVE DURING LOCKDOWN AND BEYOND
The truth is that many of us look very different to how we did before the pandemic. Throughout lockdown plenty of people have found themselves see-sawing between periods of extreme exercise and… less productive times. This pandemic has often felt so endless that it’s, rightly, been difficult to maintain motivation. However, now that we can see a pinprick of light at the end of the tunnel, many of us are nervous about how others will view our bodily and behavioural changes. In this stress awareness month, we want to share six ways to help you be more body positive for the remainder of your lockdowns – and beyond.
You are unique
It’s a cliché for a reason but the first thing to remember is that you are unique. Every person’s body is different and everyone has their own normal and limits. Forget that ‘perfect summer bod’ and recognise your own beauty and shape. If you’re happy as you are, excellent. The most important person to please is yourself.
Go at your own speed
If you want to get back to a stricter exercise schedule once gyms and leisure centres re-open it’s crucial that you take things slowly. You may want to go straight back to benching 100kg or running 20 miles on a treadmill but your body will have changed in the past year and this may not be possible straight away. Build back up to where you before and don’t beat yourself down if it takes you a little while.
Do things you love
Many people seem to forget that exercise can be fun! Instead of dragging yourself to the gym however many times a week join a club that you love instead. Make the most of your post lockdown freedom (when it comes) and enjoy exercising and connecting with your friends. Running 5 miles as you play hockey/football/rugby can often feel much easier than running in a straight line or a treadmill.
Change your habits slowly
After a year of being very close to our fridges and food cupboards, the habits we’ve formed can feel difficult to break. If you wish to make any changes in your life then try and do so slowly. Rather than forcing yourself onto a strict and regimented diet choose one that you’ll enjoy. Healthy food does not need to be tasteless or boring!
Look in the mirror and love yourself
Looking at ourselves in the mirror can often feel daunting. Many of us are so aware of our ‘imperfections’ that we can barely stand to do it. Here’s a challenge for you though: stand in front of your mirror and notice 5 things that you love about your body. One of them could be something as little as your freckles or dimples but taking a moment to look at yourself with love can be great for your mental health.
The most important thing to remember is that your body is amazing and deserves love not hatred. Forget that six pack or thigh gap and simply focus on treating your body with care and respect.
By Ilona Cabral
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