Wednesday, April 15, 2020

Our world is upside-down.  
We are scared, sad, anxious, worried, uncertain, and depressed.  We try keep up a good front, but it can be hard to stay positive during this unprecedented and extremely stressful time.

We seek comfort.  
For some, "comfort food" provides a psychological pleasure.  For others,  spending hours behind the computer screen, on social media, or surfing the net is an escape.  And then there's bing watching tv shows and movies, sleeping late and lounging around the house.  There's nothing wrong any of these things in small doses, but what we should really be focused on right now is our HEALTH.

Believe me, I'm there with you. I've been eating quarts of ice cream, baking my heart out, sleeping in, and finding excuses not to exercise (it's too cold, I don't have a gym, I'm tired, not enough time, etc. etc.)

As you probably know, I have CLL a form of Leukemia.  I am one of the severely immune compromised.  After a long conversation with my doctor this morning, a lightbulb went off. He told me that this is the time that everyone needs to keep their immune system strong and healthy.  This means strenuous exercise, the best diet possible, and stress reduction. Not only is a strong immune system a line of defense against the virus, but it can also prevent other illnesses like heart disease, stroke, cancer and diabetes. Now is not the time to let our health go for comfort reasons, it's "the" time to strengthen our immune system.

I posted a quote to social media the other day about "giving ourselves permission".  Yes there will be days when we just need to sleep in, hibernate or indulge in a treat--but staying healthy should be the #1 priority.  After all, we can't afford to be sick right now.  Let's do our best to stay OUT of the hospitals (other than having a baby that is!).

When this is all over (and it will be at some point), let's come out this pandemic with a strong healthy body--not with high blood pressure, elevated cholesterol or other health issues. 

Are you with me?

I usually think..."I'll start tomorrow".  But instead, I started today.  I power-walked three miles this afternoon pushing my pace.  I went back to my old diet (pescatarian) and I threw out any junk-food in the cabinet.  After dinner I'm going for another walk and then I'll listen to a meditation before bed. For those of you saying "I don't have time for this",  you do. You don't have time to get sick. Just do it. 
Choose health as your new normal.

Here are some tips that I've found useful:

  • Peloton's app is free for three months. You don't need equipment or a lot of space to do many of their workouts (which are  fabulous). They even have yoga and meditations.
  • Keep a pitcher of ice water on the kitchen counter as your "go to" drink instead of juices, soda or other sweet drinks.
  • If you're dying for comfort food make your own healthier versions.  I made this eggplant parm recipe the other night and it was great (I cut back on the cheese). 
  • DON'T buy junk-food. Out of sight, out of mind. Stock up on healthy snacks like fruit, veggies, popcorn (my fave),  hummus, etc.  If you must have something sweet check these out HERE and HERE (I'm addicted) 
  • I'll be getting this portable workout machine soon, so I can pedal while I work or read.
  • Schedule exercise into your day just like you would an appointment or lunch-date. 
  • Substitute a little agave syrup, applesauce, date syrup (love this one) or Swerve for sugar if you must bake. There are some fabulous healthy dessert recipes out there! Nora Cooks is a great website.
  • Leave a plate of cut-up veggies out for snacking. I find if they're pre-cut and easy to grab, I'll go for them first (before I raid the cabinets and fridge). 
  • A hot cup of tea has many health benefits and can be filling and satisfying. I drink this one every's delish.
  • Get a good night's sleep--this has helped me tremendously.
  • Limit the news you watch. 
Please feel free to share your tips. 
Stay healthy and safe!
XO Susan

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