So we’re several weeks into lockdown and working from home each day can be mostly confusing! I’ve found it’s really important to have boundaries between work and home life to make sure I switch between the two and ensure I have evenings and weekends with my daughter and feel ready and motivated to work each day. I’ve found that keeping busy and having some leisure activities planned has been vital for us both, so here is my Lockdown Survival Guide to what is keeping us on our toes as we go into week 5 of lockdown.
So not just my 10 minutes walk outside, although it is important to get fresh air, I’ve found it’s been good to focus on a workout at the beginning of each day. I start my day with a short yoga session. I’ve found a 30-day yoga programme called Yoga with Cassandra. It’s only 10 minutes and suitable for all levels but I feel like I really rely on this now and feel so good afterwards – I’m totally keeping this as part of my routine when I eventually get back to work…good intentions to anyhow!
Following on from that, even though I try to keep my day flexible so that I can help my daughter with her school work, after breakfast I select 2 or 3 of the HIIT, strengthening or cardio workouts from the Madfit channel. There are so many to choose from of various lengths and it’s the variety that keeps me interested, so depending on what I did the day before or what part of my body is aching the most, I select a few workouts that add up to around 30 minutes. There are quite a few that don’t require equipment, they have a great soundtrack and are easy to follow – but not necessarily to do! But by Week 4 I am improving and I can see a difference in my strength and my overall fitness. If you want to try any with weights and don’t have any, just use some cans from the kitchen cupboard or fill some water bottles up.
There are some days though that I just can’t face a HIIT workout or something strenuous, so rather than sacking the whole exercise thing off I choose something light and fun, and follow a dance class by Oti Mabuse. She does dance sessions live each day and they are all available on her YouTube channel to follow along to in your own time. She does family and older sessions, so I select the one which appeals to me the most and give it a shot.
Another dance session like I like to do is Bollywood Fit at Home with Farrah’s Dance Workouts. Easy to follow and good fun, they run every Monday evening. Even if you’re a little tired, a few minutes into this perks you up and is suitable for the whole family. Get a Facebook watch party going with relatives and all do it together.
There are loads of online virtual quizzes on YouTube and Facebook, and you can either do them as a family or WhatsApp your friends to join in at the same time. We’ve done general knowledge pub quizzes, Disney, Harry Potter and Friends and find them good fun and they pass an hour on an evening. We usually get a few drinks and snacks at the ready for when they start! Any excuse!! Search Facebook for any others that take your fancy.
Musicals and Plays
Andrew Lloyd Webber musicals are streamed every Friday evening and available for 48 hours. I’ve watched Joseph and Jesus Christ Superstar so far! Again, we made an evening of it and even dressed up as if were having a night at the theatre! With theatre snacks and drinks too of course.
The National Theatre is also streaming a selection of fantastic plays for free, currently they are showing Jane Eyre and next week is Treasure Island. A great opportunity to see all those plays you’ve always wanted to but never had the time to before, or even the ones you never planned to see. Try broadening your horizons a little and it may just surprise you.
If you want to learn all about how to become a Disney Imagineer and how to design theme parks this is for you! Imagineering in a Box takes you from story development and conceptual design to characters and ride development, all as you design a theme park of your very own. We put 2 hours aside every Sunday to work through the lessons. We have done the first lesson and created a mood board and are absolutely loving it. Great for young and old alike.
I know there are lots of courses online for free at the moment, like learning Spanish or teaching yourself digital photography, but for me, this was the one we could do as a family that everybody loved.
Staying with the Disney theme we’ve also enjoyed the online art classes with a Disney Parks Artist. Similar to what we did in Animal Kingdom last year at their Animation Station, it breaks down the character to draw it in stages and the end result is often surprising! We started with Mickey Mouse but there is also Tinkerbell, Olaf, Genie, the list goes on. Just grab some A4 paper and a pencil.
While there are more important things to consider in the world today, we can all still be allowed to be disappointed if we’ve had holidays or trips cancelled that we were looking forward to. It’s still unclear when travel will be available and even safe to do in the future so the pleasure of planning a replacement trip is still not yet viable. So in the meantime, why not recreate it at home!! Get out your holiday outfit, cook up some food you would eat when on holiday and watch programmes related to the place. For us, we designed a New York City night, huge slices of pizza and bagels with pastrami, then watched Breakfast at Tiffany’s. We also did a little research and found loads of sites that do virtual tours, and the same can be done for specific tourist areas of interest in countries and cities all over the world, like the National History Museum and the British Museum in London.
I think we all have our variations of a Lockdown Survival Guide, whether we are working from home, not working or still going to work as a key worker. If you have your own imaginative ways of living the lockdown in style share them in the comments below. We’ve a few more weeks of this yet!