Physical health and mental health impact heavily on each other but are often not talked about together. It is even more important to talk about the effect of physical health now as our usual ways of exercising may have been disrupted due to the coronavirus.
Physical activity can be done in many forms and does not have to be a high intensity workout. Everything from going on a walk to completing an online exercise class to putting some music on and having a dance is classed as physical activity.
Read Rethink’s introduction to physical activity here
Physical activity often involves being outside in nature. Being able to access nature and incorporate that into your routine can also have a positive impact on your mental wellbeing. Due to current restrictions it may be more difficult to access nature, but we have some resources that might be able to help.
Oxfordshire Mind have a variety of virtual walks, whether you fancy a trek through the South African savanna or a stroll through Christ Church Meadows, you are now able to do this, all whilst in the comfort of your own home
Active Oxfordshire also have lots of different ways to keep active, including how you can exercise outside whilst maintaining social distancing https://www.getoxfordshireactive.org/staying-active-at-home
Oxfordshire Mind’s Walking for Wellbeing team have also been putting up videos weekly, including a 40 minute long video following on of the members of the team as they walk around Christ Church Meadow.
Online workouts appear to be a new craze currently with lots available depending on the type of workout you want and the ability level you are at.
Sport England have a detailed resource around what on demand activities are available which are broken down depending on what you are interested in. https://www.sportengland.org/stayinworkout#get_active_at_home
If full workouts are not for you, the NHS has produced an app, called Active 10, which tracks how much brisk walking you do and allows you to set targets for each day. Perhaps you could be briskly walking whilst listening to one of Oxfordshire Mind’s virtual walks? https://www.nhs.uk/oneyou/active10/home
It is also important to keep the brain exercised. Mindfulness can be a good way to do this as it can help to develop awareness of your physical condition as well as improving your mental wellbeing.
Each week the Oxfordshire Mindfulness Centre are uploading a free Mindfulness session which focus on a variety of things including one week looking at how to incorporate mindfulness in your everyday routine. https://www.oxfordmindfulness.org/
Guidelines around physical activity outside and social distancing as well as other coronavirus updates can be found on the Oxford Health website. https://www.oxfordhealth.nhs.uk/news/coronavirus-covid-19/