We’re already 3 weeks into 2022 and today is officially known as Blue Monday. Sounds depressing right? And historically it is! Blue Monday was originally dubbed the most depressing day of the year in the UK, largely due to the miserable winter weather in the Northern Hemisphere, the financial fallout of the festive season, and the effect that excessive poor food and alcohol choices can have on mental health.
On the flip side, many have chosen to reflect on Blue Monday as an opportunity to recommit to their resolutions and long-term goals. The link between mental and physical health is an important one, and incorporating a nutritious diet with daily movement is a fantastic first step to nailing 2022.
Healthy Eating Tips
Hopefully you enjoyed some amazing food and thoroughly treated yourself over the Christmas and New Year period. But if, like us, you’re struggling to put down the ham and chocolate and eat a vegetable, here are some easy tips to help you get back on track!
- Go back to basics, aim to include lean proteins and lots of leafy greens in at least two meals a day. This will help keep you fuller for longer and prevent hungry snacking. Because let's face it, when there are leftover chocolates lying around, they’re hard to resist!
- Regift excess indulgence foods such as hampers, boxes of chocolates etc. Take them to social events to share or even put them in your work break room, because a box of chocolates shared between friends is better than eating the whole thing in front of The Real Housewives on Friday night right?!
- Shop online where you can, supermarket order and collect or delivery can help ensure you only get what you need and no impulse buys end up in your trolley. Which is a win for the bank account too!
- Prepare some extra meals ahead of time, it’s not uncommon to already be feeling a bit of burnout heading back into reality after holidays. Having some nutritious meals available in your freezer when all you want to do is get takeaway will help keep you on track on hard days.
- Supplementation can help too! Multivitamins and Greens Powders with breakfast are a great way to top up on some missing nutrients. We also love our Performance Coffee range for an extra boost of energy and superfoods in the convenience of our daily cuppa.
The daily monotony of life can leave us feeling a little uninspired, and like nutrition, getting back into an exercise routine after a few weeks off can be rough! So what can you try to make the transition a little easier?
- Find something you love to do and do it often, movement and exercise doesn’t have to be one size fits all when it comes to supporting your wellbeing. Yoga, martial arts, walking, swimming, group fitness or weight training, whatever suits you and makes you happy is what you should work into your routine.
- Keep an exercise journal and note how you feel before and after your activity. Getting started can be hard, but movement will release feel-good chemicals such as dopamine and serotonin for an instant and long-lasting mood boost. Next time you feel like skipping your workout, have a read through your notes and focus on the good feelings that you know are coming your way.
- Find an accountability partner, having an equally committed friend, co-worker or family member come with you to the gym, a fitness class, or lunchtime walk in the sun will make you less inclined to skip a day.
- Focus on being consistent at the start and don’t get too hung up on the results. Meaningful change takes time, and being even 1% better every day is a huge step in the right direction.
- Remember why you’re doing it! Regular exercise can help you sleep better and will have positive impacts on your long-term physical wellbeing in the form of strong bones, heart health, lung health etc. From a mental health perspective, as well as those feel-good chemicals in the brain, regular exercise can improve stress levels, increase self-esteem and support healthy coping mechanisms.
Most importantly, just be kind to yourself! You still have 350 days left in 2022 so if you set yourself some goals, there’s still so much time to make progress on them. And if you didn’t set any, that’s cool too! Just make the most of each day and treat your body with kindness and care so you can thrive wherever the year takes you.