ADOPTING A HEALTHY LIFESTYLE IN OUR NEW WORLD - AOIFE CLANCY NUTRITON

This weeks guest blog is by Sligo based Health & Performance Nutritionist Aoife Clancy. Aoife gives her top tips to maintain a healthy routine as we transition from lockdown life to the new normal.

As we return to a new normal, it’s very easy to slip back into a fast-paced way of living. Here are a few tips to help you maintain a healthy lifestyle by looking after your body and mind as we revert to a routine outside the home.

NUTRITION

Regular Meal Patterns: try consuming breakfast, lunch and dinner and include a snack between meals. Snacking can have a positive impact on your eating habits by keeping hunger at bay and avoiding overeating at mealtimes.

Consume 5 – 7 a Day: fruit and vegetables contain an abundance of vitamins and minerals which carry out a variety of functions to keep the body healthy. Here are a couple of ideas to increase your intake:

1) Leave your car keys beside the fruit bowl as a reminder to grab a piece when you’re walking out the door!

2) Include a smoothie and / or vegetable soup daily. This is a great way of getting in 2 – 3 portions.

Increase Your Fluid Intake: your body’s fluid needs are dependent on body weight. Try this calculation: {35ml x kilogram body weight}. For example {35ml x 70kg = 2.5 Litres fluid per day}

healthy_smoothie

Practice Meal Preparation: planning in advance will make a massive difference to your week by saving you time. Here are a few ideas to begin incorporating.

1) Spend 20 – 30 minutes on a Sunday slicing up some peppers and onions and place them in a zip lock bag in the freezer. This will be perfect for a quick stir-fry during the week.

2) Cook a carbohydrate source such as couscous, plain pasta or quinoa and store it in the fridge in an airtight container. During the week it can be paired with salad or vegetables and a protein source (eggs, beans, fish or meat) to make it a balanced meal.

3) Make some quick and easy energy balls or oat bars at the weekend for a healthy snack during the week.

4) Pick one day during the week where you have time to prepare a curry or bolognaise and cook extra for storing in a tupperware box in the freezer. Once removed from the freezer it will last a couple of days. These are very handy for busy evenings, especially if you like to exercise after work and need food swiftly post – training!

EXERCISE

Exercise may have gone by the way side the past few months which is totally fine! Start back with small steps. It is recommended that we exercise for 30 minutes per day 5 times per week. You could begin with parking 15 minutes from work to help with this. If you’re a beginner to exercise why not give something new a go like an exercise or yoga class.

It’s important that you carry out whatever exercise you love to do. You can’t beat that endorphin release to improve the mood! If you’re busier than ever with the return to work, just remember exercise increases productivity. It only takes 10 minutes for that feel-good factor to kick in and your body and mind will thank you for it!

yoga_exercises

MIND

Looking after your mental health during this time of crisis is an over-riding factor for overall health. If you’re new to this, practicing mindfulness is a really good place to start. Here are some techniques you could practice to keep your mind at ease:

Find Your Space: find a place to sit that feels calm and quiet to you. Set a time limit. If you’re new to this it can help to just set a short time, such as 5 or 10 minutes.

Notice Your Body: You can sit in a chair with your feet flat on theaoife_clancy_nutriton floor, kneel or in a yoga position – whatever you feel most comfortable and are happy to stay in position for the full time.

Feel Your Breath: feel the sensation of your breath as it goes in and as it goes out

Try to remain focused on the breath. It is inevitable that your mind may wander to other places. If it takes you a few seconds or minutes to notice, simply return to your breath when you do, with no judgement.

Be Kind to Yourself: if you do drift your thinking elsewhere, don’t judge or overthink about where your mind has gone, just bring it back.

Looking after your body and mind is extremely important for your health and the health of the loved ones around you so ensure to make this a priority, after all your health is your wealth!

ABOUT AOIFE

Aoife is Health & Performance Nutritionist (MSc Sports and Exercise Nutrition and BSc Hons Human Nutrition) whose aim is to educate nutrition to sports teams, athletes, groups and individual clients through practical evidence-based information and her passion for cooking and sharing recipes.

Aoife works with sports teams (Sligo senior men's team, Sligo senior Hurling team and Sligo Senior Ladies) and delivers corporate talks on nutrition to companies and workshops to sports clubs and schools. 

Aoife also runs her own nutrition clinic where she carries out one to one consultations. Her clinic is based in Fix You Physio. Her clients goals range from living a healthier lifestyle, gaining a knowledge of nutrition, weight loss, muscle gain and performance nutrition.

Follow her on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter for nutrition tips and quick, tasty and nutritious recipes.