The Covid-10lb.! No, not a new form of the virus, but something different. I’m referring to the 10lb. Many will gain through this time of quarantine. We will look back on this time and call the weight gain the “Covid-10”. Think about it for a while, you are out of your normal routine, you are now working from home, or not working which can be even worse, because let’s be honest…. #snacks. You are likely much more sedentary than ever since you don’t have to get dressed to go about your full day. And to add icing to the figurative cake, you don’t have a gym to go, so how are you supposed to stay fit and active? Through this article I hope to provide you with some simple yet effective ways to avoid the Covid-10 that the wretched Covid-19 quarantine may create.
When you put in your order at the grocery store or when you choose to “mask” up and walk the isles, do it with intention. Have a pre made list that includes real, whole foods that are packed with vitamins and minerals, stave off hunger, provide satiation and don’t include sugar. What does that look like? Well quite simply you should be shopping to the perimeter of the grocery store! Avoid the isles except for essential additives for cooking and optimally even avoid the bakery (which is also on the perimeter). Why? Well, these foods are real foods, that do all of the good things I’ve listed previously. The food down the isles is often packaged pretty, packed with sodium and sugar and all the other “non” food things that create an addictive, “give me more” brain signal. When I think about the best way to describe how I suggest you try to maintain your diet, not just for this time but for your lifetime, I fall back on what I’ve learned from teaching CrossFit seminars for years. Greg Glassman put it very eloquently and straight to the point when he wrote “What is Fitness in 100 words”. He said, “Eat meat and veggies, nuts and seeds, some fruit, little starch and no sugar.”
The big takeaway is that if you have junk at home, you will eat it! I tell people this all the time, but right now it is especially true, we are just at home too much to avoid the inevitable. Oh...and lay off the alcohol folks. I know many of you want to drown your sorrows in a delicious whiskey, glass of wine or a few bottles of beer to finish the night, BUT NOW AIN’T THE TIME. Ration your alcohol intake, especially if you know your diet isn’t the best. Give yourself a few nights a week to have a drink or two and practice discipline on the others. Your scale, your body composition, the mirror and your overall metabolic health will thank you later.
Create eating schedules or fasting times
During a time of boredom, you are likely to feel or think you are hungry. This is what will crush your weight gain. Your mind is powerful. One of my favorite scriptures is in Matthew 26:41 where it talks about how the spirit is willing but the body is weak! This couldn’t be more spot on. Which my point here is for you set times during the day when you eat full meals and then times where you snack. Something as an example would be a 5 meal day where you eat bigger and full meals at 8:00am, 1:00PM, 6:00PM and you have snacks at 11:00 AM and 3:00PM. This is something that can give most people attainable times to stay focused on a few tasks for work or exercise or house keeping then make their way back to the kitchen or pantry.
The other option is experiment with fasting. I’ve done intermittent fasting off and on for a few months and first experimented with back in 2013. This practice is popular and you can find more about it online anywhere. I’m not saying this is for everyone but it can be a great way to increase insulin sensitivity and decrease your feeding windows, likely overall decreasing consumption of calories. For this type of practice, like any, you must have a plan or you are planning to fail. You can’t just wake up and decide you will fast that day, primariy becaue you’ll likely fail unless you’ve been doing it successfully in the past. So plan for it, set a goal of doing it 2-3 days a week to start. I like to eat a late (healthy) snack the night before fasting around 8 or 9 PM then pick up on eating around 2-3 PM the next day. The only thing I allow myself while fasting is coffee, straight black. Now, again….there will be many opinions on this, but that is how I choose to fast. I’ve done intermittent fasting where I did it daily and also where I did it every other day. I suggest starting with every other day and then deciding to go daily if you enjoy it. I love it because it gives me lots of energy in the morning (I know, now what you expect) and also takes one less thing for me to think about. I don’t need to food prep for breakfast or worry about feeding myself while I feed the kids and then try to train or get work done in the morning, it’s nice.
There are also other methods of fasting where you can pick 1 day a week or more and simply fast for 24 hours, but that takes some experience usually. When it’s not for spiritual reasons and you don’t have that as motivation, it’s easy to cave and eat something. The point is however to simply try it. Remember it can lower overall calorie intake and increase insulin sensitivity which are both going to be positive on our health, not just our weight.
Move your body
Notice how I didn’t say anything about training or working out? Well the reason is because you don’t even need to view that way. Just move your body! Go outside and walk, do some push ups (or do them on the wall or couch), do sit ups, run, hike, ride a bike. Do these things in different variations and combinations and distances each day! If you do this and try to build consistency with simply “moving” for 30-90 minutes then you will exit this quarantine likely in better shape than you started it. And to be clear I’m not necessarily talking to the gym rats that have been putting in 1-2 hours a day in the gym prior to the shut down, you guys already have ideas on what to do and likely have been doing it. But I am talking to anyone of you that may be reading this that weren’t doing “anything” prior to the quarantine, now is your chance! You likely have more free time than ever, and you are likely using it sitting down in front of the TV. Turn off the “Tiger King” and go outside, move, and be a human.
If you lack creativity and resources then please visit our IG @fnx_fit and check out our daily posts for suggested workouts and movements for each day during the week.
Let’s continue to put our health first. The best way for us to be a low risk victim of ANY disease or virus is to be the healthiest version of ourselves possible. These few points will hopefully be good reminders for ways to do that for each of you! If you have a friend or family member that may need to read this please forward the link along. Our goal even through this quarantine is to continue to rise up, and we will do that as we rise together! No Covid-10lb. For you.