Before being advised by NHS 111 yesterday lunchtime to self-isolate due to my worsening coronavirus symptoms, I had recently started walking again for an hour a day every day and had been doing a daily workout in my bedroom.
I had really enjoyed my morning walks and felt energised walking up and down steep hills, breathing in the fresh air and reflecting on my life and the world in general. Since I was up at 6.00am and usually out of the house by 6.30am, the streets were deserted. It made me appreciate what I’d been missing the past few months when I went into hibernation and refused to venture out walking in the cold, wet weather.
The instructions from the NHS were clear, self-isolation means I can no longer leave the house for my daily walks until the symptoms no longer present themselves, and for at least 7 days. I have consoled myself with the reality that I am lucky to be alive and fortunate to have a garden where I can still enjoy the spring sunshine. Other people are confined to their homes self-isolating with no outside space.
Last year when I was dieting I put a keep-fit kit together which now fits neatly in the ottoman at the end of my bed (main picture) and every morning when I get up, I do my daily routine which is a combination of free weights, yoga and a stepping machine. I will be using the stepping machine more often now and could walk up and down my garden path to burn some more calories!
I have also been eating healthily, consuming carrot juice daily and high strength vitamin C with zinc. My current eating plan is porridge for breakfast with filtered coffee; a pear, banana and segment of 85% dark chocolate with decaffeinated tea for lunch; dinner is usually fish or fishcake with a salad (pictured left) or wholegrain rice with spinach, shredded carrots and kidney beans or black-eyed peas. Desert is an individual cheesecake and later in the evening I usually have a toasted bagel.
This isn’t a ‘diet’ just a healthy eating plan consisting of balanced meals with plenty of fruit and vegetables, beans, greens and grains! There are enough treats to feed my sweet tooth, though I can taste little of anything right now – a symptom of Covid-19.
Despite eating a healthy balanced diet and previously walking every day, I noticed I wasn’t losing any weight, which added to my suspicion that my body was storing fat to ensure I have the required energy to fight the coronavirus.
So I am just going to continue exercising as best I can and eating healthy so that when my body is free of coronavirus the extra pounds I have been carrying will finally shift.
Emotional and psychological wellbeing is just as important as physical health. Although my social plans to dine with family and friends for my birthday had to be cancelled, I enjoyed a quiet, reflective birthday. I just gave thanks to be alive and to have loving siblings and supportive friends wishing me well. I thought about my birthday last year when we hosted the Health, Wellbeing and Happiness event; the lovely holiday I had with my sisters in New York and my trips to Detroit and Austin.
It pains me to think of the people who are sick and dying in New York, the epicentre of Covid-19 in the US, which itself now has more cases and deaths than any other country. I have to maintain faith and hope that things will get better, that the world will become a better place when this pandemic is halted.