What have I done during lockdown?

I don’t know who’s been counting, but we are now entering what seems to be the one-hundredth week of lockdown. So please tell me I’m the only one getting tired of it? I mean sure a lot of us loved the first part when it felt more like a holiday – sleeping in, relaxing and just watching tv all day, not really focused on being productive. Now though, the prison sentence nature of it is starting to make me feel claustrophobic. However, being stuck at home all day and not being allowed to do all sorts of activities that could be considered ‘time-fillers’ means that there has been an opportunity to try out some new things and be more productive. That’s why I wanted to do a bit of a reflective piece to look back on everything that I’ve done during all of this extended time at home. From my social media streams, I see that a lot of people have been baking (I have been too), but I’ve also been doing a lot else. You see, I tried to use all of the extra time as best as possible to get things done that I haven’t been able to. So, here’s what I’ve been up to so far during quarantine.

It’s self-care Saturday!

Following my mental health awareness themed posts last week, I didn’t feel right finishing off the month without including this post to the list. After all, self-care is a key to good mental health, and one of the most significant forms of kindness we can ever show is to ourselves. No matter what, looking after yourself in all the ways you can (maintaining a healthy lifestyle, expressing yourself, taking the time to relax and do things that make you happy) is crucial to reducing stress, improving your emotional wellbeing and essentially keeping your head in a happy place. It may not cure everything. I mean last time I checked a long hot soak in a bubble bath didn’t alleviate mental illnesses, but it does help ease a few aspects of the pain. That’s why self-care is so crucial, and why I am sharing a few ideas for you to incorporate into a day filled with self-care related activities.

How to crush those sugar cravings!

Hey there everyone! I hope you are all staying safe and healthy during this difficult time and that any cases of cabin fever haven’t gotten too unbearable. This lockdown/quarantine period certainly isn’t easy, especially when it comes to staying healthy. Most of the foods that are non-perishable tend to be of the less-healthy variety, chips, chocolates and cookies have become the ideal snack food because fresh fruits are not as easy to buy and we’re stuck at home so don’t have as much natural exercise or variety of food to consume. So, given all of this, I’m sure everyone is struggling to keep up healthy diets or lifestyles. One thing that is particularly challenging is dealing with sugar cravings … We all know that when those strong cravings hit, it almost impossible to not cave in to temptation. How on earth, given the situation, can we stay healthy when it seems that our very lifestyles at the moment allow us to give in to desires for junk food and sugar cravings? Well, I know that it can be extremely challenging to let go of sugar (trust me, I’ve been there and it’s not exactly a party), especially when the situation isn’t ideal, so today I thought I’d share some tips to help with that. The global quarantine doesn’t exactly make it any easier, but if you are determined to drop the amount of sugar you consume and don’t want to be overcome by cravings, then try out these tips to help you crush those sugar cravings!

How to keep the calories at bay during quarantine!

Hey everyone! I hope you are all keeping well, given the COVID-19 pandemic, and that you aren’t going too crazy with all the social-distancing and having to quarantine at home. I was looking through my planner the other day and saw that today was caramel popcorn day! How delicious and heavenly does that sound? Now I was tempted to write a post all about the wonders of this scrumptious treat, along with a recipe of mine to make the best caramel popcorn ever. However, as I was writing out my recipe I was struck by inspiration and found something even better to talk about. As amazing as caramel popcorn is, it isn’t exactly the healthiest and that got me thinking … this period has been challenging for all of us and one of the predominant hurdles is how on earth we are meant to stay fit and healthy when we have to stay home and limit our grocery shopping to non-perishables or frozen foods. I love pastas and frozen meals as much as the next guy, but that doesn’t mean they are friendly on our diets or bodies. It isn’t easy, and certainly far from ideal, but even in this current situation, there are ways for us to keep our health in check. It just requires a little extra effort and a positive, persistent attitude.

An update on my new year goals – how are you doing with your goals??

Hello everyone and happy beginning of March! Goodness me how time flies. I can’t believe that it is already March and it feels like the year has only just begun, that January was last week. That being said, all of the unshakeable motivation that comes with the start of the new year has most certainly faded because life is undoubtedly back to reality. The lofty days of the Christmas holiday are long gone, and I think most of us at this point just want to make it through the day without having a nervous breakdown. So, now is the perfect time to check-in and see how everyone’s new year goals are going.

Advice for first-timers doing athletic races and events!

My dad usually has excellent advice to share, but because one purpose of our trip was for him to do an athletic event, I thought I’d use that as inspiration. Today, straight from the mouth of Dr Charl (aka my dad), I’m going to be sharing advice and tips for first-timers doing athletic races. Now this is pretty good advice for any person wanting to do an athletic event but is more geared towards people doing it for the first time. Anywho, I hope you enjoy today’s post, just please be aware that it will contain some potentially terrifying content (like marathon races and extreme amounts of training and exercise), but if that doesn’t scare you, then please enjoy.

HAPPY NEW YEAR! Let us crush 2020!

Ugh!! I don’t know about you, but I don’t think anyone sticks to their new year’s resolutions. Maybe it’s just because of the term, or because everyone else is setting them, so why not? I think the real problem though is that we are blinded by the bright prospect of a clean slate year, so we set ourselves these resolutions that, while noble and fantastic, are quite hard to accomplish when reality overrides the optimistic dream. So let’s rather do goals, reasonable ones instead of resolutions. That way, we give ourselves more opportunity to succeed. Keep reading for more about goals, resolutions and a few of my goals for the year!

Tips for Having a Healthier Christmas

Christmas is not exactly known for being a period of health consciousness and weight loss, and it tends to be a pretty unhealthy time of the year for most of us. If I had to just start thinking of all the calories in some of my favourite dishes, I’d probably start crying. What’s worse is that it is so easy to get swept up in the joy of festivities that we forget about our health entirely, and we end up starting the new year (with all of our health goals and new fitness programs) a little bit behind the starting line because of the holiday weight we’ve put on. So does that mean it is impossible to stay healthy over Christmas with all the temptation in our way? My answer is no. It is always possible to stay healthy, it just takes having the right attitude. Being healthy, though, doesn’t mean you have to heavily restrict yourself or ban yourself from enjoying the holiday flavours. All that is going to do is cause cravings, and then binges and no one wants that. For me, I’ll always indulge over Christmas. I will eat more than I usually do, and eat a little more sweet stuff than is in my typical day. However, that doesn’t mean that I don’t want to work on being healthy. I may do all of this stuff, but I will still keep up the exercise and try to look and go for the healthier option. So, here are ten tips for staying healthy over the festive season, if you are like me and want to have your Christmas cake, and eat it too.

Skincare Tips and Advice :)

Have you ever looked in the mirror and just smiled because you are happy with the way your skin looks? Or has your whole mood been brought down because you notice a pimple that just seems too huge to be seen in public with? Our skin is a big part of our lives and how our skin looks can have a significant impact on our mood, our day and our confidence. Sometimes though, it just seems like the odds aren’t in our favour, and our skin just doesn’t want to cooperate. It looks dull or oily or dry, or you are breaking out, and that experience can be quite depressing. Well, I know how horrible it can feel when your skin isn’t looking the way you want it, but you don’t have to utterly despair. There are quite a few tips and tricks you can use, that are easy enough to implement, that might make a massive difference to your skin. My mom has always been militant that I look after my skin and treat it properly, and that can be done through a lot of different avenues. So today, I will be sharing with you some skincare tips and advice for when your skin is being recalcitrant. All it takes is a little effort to implement them.

Easy Weight-Loss Hacks! Tips and tricks that are easy to do and will help make losing weight a little bit easier :D

Weight loss is a battle that I’m sure a lot of us have faced or are currently facing. We are always striving for that perfect body, to lose a little bit more weight and to look a little bit trimmer. Unfortunately, life makes it hard to stay focused on weight-loss and making the healthier choice. All things that taste good are always more laden with calories than anything else, unhealthy food is a lot more convenient, and sometimes that takeaway meal is just calling to you too strong for you to ignore. I’ve been on a weight-loss mission for a long time. I’ve tried different diets, and exercise plans and nothing was working so I ended up getting really upset at myself for not being able to make it work. Then I realised that I was making weight-loss too hard for myself, pushing myself and changing things too quickly for me to really adapt to them. I also didn’t realise that there are a few tricks you can use that can make a world of difference in trying to lose weight. These tricks have helped me out a lot, not because they are the precise and perfect weight-loss method, but because they make losing weight and being healthier, in general, a little bit easier. They help take something huge, like changing your lifestyle to either drop some weight, become fitter or just be healthier, and make it a little more manageable with these tips that can help you stay on track. Now, as I have said, doing these things will not be the only thing that helps you lose weight. All those significant lifestyle changes require patience, dedication, energy, effort and perseverance. But, these tips will help you on this changing path and make things a little easier, at least in my opinion. So, here are ten easy weight-loss hacks, or tips, that could help make things a little easier on your weight-loss journey. I hope you enjoy this post and find at least one tip that works for you!