In our third week of isolation in Washington, I have a few more thoughts on how to stay healthy and use the time wisely.
Tiger King is not on the list. I watched it and felt like I was watching an episode of Jerry Springer that was produced by Ken Burns. Skip it.
The things that are on the list: cardio, snacks, coffee, and proactive ways to pass the time.
I don't enjoy jogging. In fact, I absolutely hate jogging. Unfortunately, cardio options are limited by how much space you have to work with. We can still do some HIIT (high intensity interval training) work at home, but the LISS (low intensity steady state) cardio options have been reduced to outdoor solo activities. If you can stay indoors to perform cardio - do so.
HIIT - pick any lower- or total-body exercise. Something like split squats, thrusters, or mountain climbers. Perform that exercise as fast as you can with full range of motion and good form for 20-30 sec. Then rest 30-40 seconds. Repeat 6-15 times depending on your conditioning or how wiped out you want to feel.
LISS - *THIS DOES NOT MEAN FIND WAYS TO STAY OUTSIDE* In my state we are allow to go outside for essentials and solo exercise as long as we still practice social distancing. If you don't have a treadmill, elliptical, rowing machine, or stationary bike at home, then go jog or bike for 30-60 minutes outside. This does not mean you can go for 10 jogs per day so you can find other people. This is still about your health and there is a still a lock down.
Snacking continues to be an issue for most people. I'm officially changing my advice on snacking. Just don't buy snacks. If you don't have them you can't eat them.
Make yourself cook a meal any time you feel hungry. If you're not willing to cook, you're not really that hungry.
All the caffeine in the world will not help if you're not controlling your sleep and work environment. I'm usually a big caffeine junkie. Right now, I'm trying to limit my caffeine to 2-3 cups of coffee per day. I don't need the energy to work from a computer.
Caffeine is not the thing that will make you productive. If you're having trouble staying on task, you have a focus issue, not an energy issue. Figure out why you're being so easily distracted and alter your environment to minimize the distractions.
There is only so much work you can do in a day. Try to dedicate a chunk of the free time you have to learning. You could learn something to help your work, to develop a new skill set, to start a new hobby, or to start a side business. The options are limitless. Just try to find something to do besides Netflix for part of your day.
Even after you've worked, learned, eaten, and napped there will still be time to kill so go ahead and enjoy some entertainment. Some folks have told me they feel like this forced isolation is an opportunity to do all the little things we "don't have time" for in our regular schedules. I think that's true, but turning your free time into a mad dash to complete as many of these things as possible will drive you crazy.
Take time to relax. Tensions are high. Times are uncertain. You need a chance to calm down and recover from the new daily routine we find ourselves in. TV and videogames can help. Don't feel guilty about the time you spend on these forms of recreation.
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