Home / Advice / I’m quitting winter. Who’s with me?

My sad little miss having a nap while the doctor decided if she was hospital worthy.

Wow. This winter has been fu****g brutal. Almost everyone I speak to is in the same boat – soooooo much sickness. The kids and I have all had the flu. Yep, actual flu. At the end of their flu bouts, my boy ended up with a throat infection. My girl had a really bad chest infection. BEFORE I had the flu, I had a lower respiratory infection, bordering on pneumonia. THEN I had the flu and am now back to a nasty cough that has messed up my ribs. Hubby has had a nasty head cold, but he reckons not the flu. Well, isn’t he just LUCKY.

I know a lot of you can sympathize. As a mum, and one who doesn’t have a regular job with a boss – it’s down to me to do the overnight stints with the sick babies. Even though I’m sick too. So it makes it really hard to get better!! Now that they are all better, I took this weekend to nap. A LOT. As well as sleep ins. So much more sleep. I think it’s helped.

So I want you to know – if this winter has gotten you down, and you can’t get out and exercise, or the food side of things has gone out the window a bit – I get it. I’m right there with ya!

There’s been a fair bit of screen time, and dragging kids along to work with me. We just do what we have to, sometimes!

How can we try to make things work around all this sickness?

Well, firstly, if you’re sick – REST. Exercise can come later. If you are actually sick, you need to care for yourself as well as those around you. Your daily walk/jog/gym will still be there when you are well again.

If you are mostly well, or able to do some gentle exercise, then why not just do something in the lounge? You Tube has LOADS of videos that you can do at home, no gear, some even involve the kids, so if they’re up to it, they can join you and burn off some energy. I’ve also put a workout at the bottom of this post, complete with instructions. There will be loads of these in my Members Only section that I’m currently building, but for now, here’s one, and take a look at You Tube. There’s so many. So, if you’re up to it – it can be done.

Food. Has your food slipped a bit with being sick and exhausted? Just work on the basics – drink plenty of water. Try to get in fruit and vege in as much as you can. Plan your meals where you’re able – keep it simple, keep it nourishing, and you will be fine.

Lots of dressing gown days in this house recently! Nice to have lots of cuddles.

If you need to rest, but the kids are around? (school holidays!) Well, I’m the first to admit that I’ve let xbox do a bit of the child raising lately. Again – do what you have to. If a couple of hours watching Netflix and playing xbox means mama gets to sleep some more, then so be it. They won’t be scarred for life. Obviously this only works if your kids are a bit older (Mine are 7 and almost 10) but they won’t mind, you get to rest, everyone is happy. I’ve also been known to fall asleep in the chair in the lounge, while they play right beside me. Only when they were REALLY sick could I convince them to sleep during the day.

Remember it’s about what you do most of the time that makes the biggest difference, not what you do some of the time. You can pick everything up again as soon as you’re well again. Self care is the most important part.

Details for each exercise are below.

Low impact star jump alternative:
(Ideal for shoulder issues, dodgy knees and weak pelvic floor muscles)
Stand tall, raise arms straight out at the sides, no higher than shoulder height.
One leg at a time, flex foot, and extend it out to the side, to about 45 degrees, hold for a moment, before returning to start. Repeat on other leg.
To make this more challenging, add in a squat before resuming on starting side.

Push Up options:
For all options – Be sure that your elbows do not go out directly to the sides. The wider your hands – the more you work your chest. The narrower your hands, the more you work your triceps.

Wall Push up – Ideal for shoulder/wrist issues:
Lean against a wall, place hands slightly more than shoulder width apart on the wall. 
Lean in towards the wall, until your nose almost touches the wall, then push back up again.
The further away from the wall your feet are, the you can make this.
Half/Knees Push Up – 
On the floor, on hands and knees, walk your hands out until your wrists are directly below your shoulders.
Keeping your back flat, lower down as far as you can go, and then push back up again. 
Full Push Up – 
For the strong people!
On toes and hands, walk hands to where your wrists are directly underneath your shoulders. Keeping your body straight, core strong, and hips tucked in, lower your body down towards the ground as far as you can, then push back up. Good form is crucial for this, so if you are unsure, get someone who knows to check your movement.

Narrow Squat – 
Feet together, keep your weight back into your heels, lower your body down, bending your knees and pushing your hips backwards. Imagine you are going to sit down on a chair, when you cannot go any lower, push back upwards again.

Lunges – 

There are so many variations, but here, we are just doing a basic, standard lunge.
Take a step forward, and make sure both feet are facing forward. Drop your body straight down, making sure your front knee doesn’t go past your foot. Raise your body back up again to the start position

Chair Tricep Dips – 
Sit on the edge of a sturdy chair or bench, hands curled over the edge at the sides of your body, and walk your feet out so that your butt slides off the chair and your legs are at a 90degree angle. Gently lower your body down towards the floor, and then use your triceps (back of your arms) to push yourself back up again. This can be hard on weaker wrists, so take care. Not many people enjoy this workout, however, it’s effective!!

Plank – 
Full Plank – Get in the full pushup position, up on your toes, only put your forearms on the ground instead of your hands. Squeeze your butt and hold your abs tight. Keep a neutral neck and spine. Create a straight, strong line from head to toes. Hold that position.
Half/Low Plank – Same as above, but instead of being up on your toes you are on your knees. Be sure that your shoulders do not come further forward or back than your elbows – they should be in a straight line down to the floor.

Jump Squats
Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart. Start by doing a regular squat, lowering your body towards the floor, as close to legs at 90 degrees to the floor as you can, then engage your core and jump up with as much force as you safely can. When you land, be sure that your knees are soft, and lower your body back into the squat position to complete one rep.Try and land quietly!! If the jump is too much on your knees, then take that part out!

Wall Sit – 
Start with your back against a wall with your feet shoulder width and about 2 feet from the wall. Slowly slide your back down the wall until your thighs are parallel to the ground. Adjust your feet so your knees are in line with your ankles. Keep your back flat against the wall.
Hold it!!!
To modify this – don’t go down so far, even 45 degrees to begin with, you will still feel it!

 Alternating Heel Touches – 

Lie on your back, feet on the floor and knees bent, arms out straight down your sides. Raise your torso up so your shoulders are off the ground. Keep a gap between your chest and your chin – imagine there is an apple between them, and keep your eyes on the ceiling. While staying up off the ground, crunch up and to the left, reaching your left arm to your left heel, then come back to the middle and repeat on the right arm, reaching for your left ankle, keep repeating this. If you need to rest occasionally, do so, but the idea is to keep going!