Coronavirus lockdown: How to keep physically and mentally well during the global crisis

Coronavirus has made all “non-essential” travel non-advisory. For now, government guidelines want people to social distance themselves. This may go on for months. How can you keep physically and mentally well during this time?

On Wednesday March 18, Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced the closure of schools from Friday March 20.

Speculation is ensuing that up to 40 London tube stations will close their doors Thursday March 19.

And, as of 9am on March 18, there were 2,626 confirmed coronavirus cases in the UK.


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Public Health England (PHE) has recognised that “social distancing can be boring or frustrating”.

It adds that people may “feel low, worried or have problems sleeping”, and may “miss being outside with other people”.

In this unprecedented time, PHE encourage people to engage with activities you enjoy.

This can range from reading books, cooking mouth-watering food, watching TV and listening to music.

Do make sure to let some fresh air into your home – crack open a window now and again, and try to catch some natural sunlight.

If you have a garden available, step outside into the fresh air to feel a fresh breeze brush past your skin.

All these steps help to manage your mental wellbeing, but being physically fit also contributes to how you feel.

It’s best to eat healthy, well-balanced meals in this time – providing good nutrition for your body and mind.

The NHS recommends drinking eight glasses of water each day – and this includes water in tea, coffee and squash.

To keep your body moving, at the moment, taking a walk where you avoid any close contact with others (less than two metres) is advisable.

Better still, put on some comfy trainers and – if able to – take yourself for a jog.

At home, keep physically strong – or begin a workout routine – by taking advantage of all the internet has to offer.


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You can download workout apps on your smartphone, pop in a workout DVD or join in an activity class on YouTube.

Some people may want to have an alcoholic beverage during this time. The NHS guidelines have their own drinking limits to ensure you’re not putting your health at risk.

In one week, the NHS recommends to spread your drinking over three days or more if you drink as many as 14 units per week – the maximum limit.

To put things in perspective, one bottle of wine is equivalent to 10 units.

And one can of extra strong beer, lager or cider (ABV 8 percent) is 3.5 units, while one strong can is 2.2 units (ABV 5.2 percent).

You may not be able to pop round your friend’s home for a cup of tea during this global crisis, but you can still keep in touch.

In fact, self isolation and social distancing doesn’t mean you have to be lonely.

Ring up family and friends, and enjoy a natter across the telephone line – they may need to hear from somebody just as much as you do.

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