We’ve been in this pandemic for over a year now and Canada is STILL in lockdown. It has definitely had a big impact on both my mental and physical health – I’m sure a lot of us can agree. Here’s the problem: we don’t move as much as we used to! We are at home all day and what happens when we’re at home? We eat.
This is definitely something I struggled with during, what seems like, the never-ending stay at home orders. I continued doing HIIT workouts (at-home edition, of course) but yet my body still underwent changes. My body isn’t the same as it was before.
Trust me, I’ve spent many days feeling like crap (pardon my French), not understanding why my body was changing even though I continued exercising. If you’re currently going through this phase in your life, please know you’re not alone and it’s okay to feel this way.
We’re in a pandemic and lockdown is preventing us from moving
Well, what do I mean by that? Let me explain. I’m not talking about our home workouts here. I’m talking about the daily “exercise” you don’t notice in what was your normal daily life. Let’s think: how about the walk from the bus stop or parking lot to your office building or the walk to grab a coffee down the street? All these steps add up! No wonder it’s so hard to get those daily 10,000 steps in!
My best friend helped me (and herself too) realize this when we were dwelling on this topic. Whether you’re still eating the same or you end up snacking throughout the day (me!), it wouldn’t surprise me if everyone gained a few pounds – hello, quarantine 15. And there’s no problem with that!
We beat ourselves up for boredom eating or snacking throughout the day, but we must find a way to forgive ourselves
Let me say it again: FORGIVE YOURSELF! You are allowed to go through these times in your life. Don’t beat yourself up over it. We’re better off trying to find ways to still allow ourselves to eat what we want sometimes, but perhaps do it with moderation. Now, I know people on social media praise the healthy lifestyle and claim they eat no junk food… truthfully, we don’t even know what they eat behind the scenes. Let’s be real – It’s hard to resist sometimes. (I personally can’t give up chips… come on now!)
Here are some tips that helped me slow down my boredom eating
If you decide you want to eat a bag of chips or anything of that sort, don’t eat from the bag
This used to be an unwritten rule when I lived at home: junk food and pop are for the weekends and when you consume, you must add your snack in a bowl and pop in a glass. I started incorporating this rule again and I must say it helps so much.
You’re eating what you’re craving, but since you’ve put it in a bowl, you eat with moderation. Best thing is that I often feel satisfied once the bowl is finished!
Cut up some fruit instead
I know junk food sounds more appetizing than eating fruit… However, if you feel like eating, why not eat something healthy while getting your vitamins. My boyfriend has a candy “addiction”, and he finds that grabbing a bowl of fruit (e.g. grapes) helps a lot. Sometimes, just the action of snacking on something sweet can satisfy the same cravings. Try it out!
Make it difficult to snack
Okay, here’s the hard truth, if you really want to stop the snacking, you have to stop buying the bad stuff. When you don’t have snacks in the house, you’re less likely to crave them. If you’re hungry, you could resort to eating fruit or going out of your way to cook something. And nobody wants those brutal Uber Eats fees, do they?
Sometimes if I’m craving junk food, I find myself grabbing a glass of water and chugging it down. This often releases my cravings. Did you know your body can confuse thirst for hunger? Try to drink at least 2 litres of water per day (it sounds harder than it is). I also have a motivation to ensure I hydrate because if I don’t, I get migraines smh.
Don’t work in or near the kitchen
My boyfriend and I recently set up an office in one of our spare bedrooms and I noticed I’m less likely to grab a snack from the kitchen. That’s mainly because I don’t really want to go downstairs to find something to eat.
If you don’t have a choice where to set up your workstation, perhaps don’t leave the snacks on display on the counter. Store them away and you won’t eye the snacks down.
If you’re like me and you tend to snack all the time (whether that’s because you’re hungry or bored), please know that it’s okay to feel this way. Everyone is going through a tough time. It will get better. These tips come from personal experience and trust me, I’m the guilty one out of all my family and friends when it comes to recreational snacking.
Please let me know in the comments or Instagram if any of these tips work for you and feel free to leave me some of your suggestions as well. I’m always on the lookout for newer and better ways to fight the urges!
Until next time!