This morning I went out for my regular Saturday morning interval session. I warm up, complete a set of 1km, 2km or 3km efforts and then warm down again. I spend the warm up avoiding people, darting from footpath to lawn to bike path – weighing up the risk of passing someone on the run against being hit by a car or bike! The creek path that I usually call my office is extremely busy on a sunny weekend in Melbourne. Given the times we are living in right now it feels a lot safer to avoid the spots with high foot traffic and join the minimal cars on the road.
As I finished my warm down and got closer to home, I noticed a sign on the tram shelter. “R you OK?” it said. An advertisement providing four simple steps to check in on the mental health and wellbeing of others. I smiled when I read the sign as I’d just ran a very intense workout and was asking myself just that at that very moment!
If you are wondering how I am motivating myself every day to stay fit, stay healthy, stay safe and remain focused I won’t lie it’s a rollercoaster ride. Some days we are killing it, home schooling our 5-year-old through his first 100 days, running many miles, cooking healthy food and working from home. Other days I feel like bursting into tears with exhaustion. Thankfully, those days are few and far between.
Here’s how I’m staying sane through our stage 4 lockdown in Melbourne:
- Planning and goal setting. It sounds easy, but putting goals on paper every Sunday takes time, it takes thought and it means you are signing up to actually complete them! Do it! We felt devastated for a few days after we learned of the new restrictions and the chance that we may not see our parents until Christmas. I focused on work and Pete’s school work, but fluffed about with running and felt defeated. The following week Lachlan and I wrote a plan for the week and our mood completely changed. We knew what we were doing, how we were going to do it and it’s been a great week. Our little one even said “This is the best day ever.” on Thursday! Bless his little heart.
- If you can fit one in, if you can afford it, get a trampoline. Our Springfree trampoline arrived on my birthday this year. At the time we thought it’d be a great way for Pete to practice his gymnastics, his basketball shots and gain confidence playing and inventing his own games in the backyard. It’s been all that and more! Pete and my husband have invented games like crazy ball. We’ve had bunny rabbit picnics and played toy car crashes! We’ve also used it for strength and recovery after the morning session of a weekend.
As soon as the weather gets warm, we have a movie night and a sprinkler 3 person dance party scheduled on our trampoline! Fingers crossed we get to have our immediate family over for these by then!
- Think creatively. With our window of exercise limited to 1 hour per day we’ve had to be creative with Pete’s exercise. Thankfully we have a path around the perimeter of our house, by design! We’ve been playing racing circuit as we run around the outside of the house.
The Springfree trampoline comes with an online exercise app and device call Tgoma. Pete plays alien stop and pop the balloon. It is a good way to combine concentration, aerobic exercise, co-ordination and flexibility.
- Forgive yourself. There’s been days where we haven’t achieved everything on the list. There’s been days where we’ve had cereal, fruit and yoghurt for dinner as I’ve been too exhausted to cook again. Forgive yourself, don’t be laying the guilt on top of the exhaustion as that’s a recipe for disaster.
My husband and I are so used to having our immediate family around that it’s been such a shock. But we’ve found creative ways to ensure Pete is in constant contact with my parents – we have Facetime Playtime every day for 1-2 hours where he plays in his playroom while Mum and Dad chat with him over video. Don’t feel guilty about not being able to do everything all by yourself. Celebrate everything you’ve been able to do that you didn’t know you were capable of instead! You’ll feel extremely accomplished. A nice way to feel indeed.
For those who love to run or walk here’s three of my favourite workout ideas to fit into your 1 hour. Each workout starts with a 10min warm up and ends with a 10min cool down. This leaves you with 40 mins to play with.
The first workout we’ve incorporated into our regime is a progressive run. Every 10mins lift the tempo of your run so by the final 10mins you are puffing strongly and feeling like you are just outside that comfort zone. Be sure to play with the speed early on so you can always pick it up! This is also the best way to run a marathon, you’ll conserve fuel and run through the field collecting finishing the race strongly if you pace yourself well.
The second workout is speed play. 2min of solid running – puffing and focused on technique. Then 1min slow jog, followed by another 1min of solid running. Then another 1 min slow jog. Repeat this 8 times.
The third workout is a staple for 10km fitness. 5min hard, 2 min slow jog/walk x4
Hope this gives you a little food for thought on how to structure your hour. You are absolutely welcome to reach out to me via email or DM via Instagram if you need other ideas!
My heart goes out to all of my friends in Melbourne as we navigate the best way forward. I hope you are finding ways to be creative, ways to cherish time together and ways to make long lasting and positive memories.
Lots of love, Lisa. x