The new normal: Food

How to stay on track with your wellness goals as our routines change

As we get ready for our routines to change again there might be some apprehension coming up about the return to “normal”. If you’re feeling that, don’t worry. If you haven’t reached the wellness goals you hoped you would by now, don’t worry. Be kind to yourself – you can always get back on track.

“Every breath is an opportunity to feel better. It’s super useful to focus on good choices you can make in each moment instead of letting stress take over about a bigger idea of where you want your wellness to be,” says Tara Stiles, founder of Strala Yoga and author of Clean Mind, Clean Body: A 28 Day Plan for Physical, Mental and Spiritual Self-Care.

She advises having compassion for yourself if you do go off track, and focusing on taking care of yourself as best you can in each moment.

Staying on track with food

When it comes to food choices, Stiles recommends focusing on unprocessed, fresh foods as much as possible.

“We can all focus on eating less processed foods and more close to nature. Focus on shopping for fresh produce that is in season. Fill your basket, your cart, and your plate with mostly foods that don’t come in boxes. Get adventurous about your local farmers’ market, health food store, and organic section of the grocery store. See what produce you are excited to prepare and enjoy and start there,” she says.

“The more your process of getting groceries, preparing, eating, digesting, and resting feels like you, the more you are nourishing yourself instead of engaging in a battle. We all know food should be nourishing, but we can also choose the healthy foods that we enjoy so we feel excited about the process.”

Lessons from lockdown life

As the world moves slowly back into something resembling the old normal, you may want to reflect on the past year and a half to see if there are any lessons or habits you want to carry forward with you. Perhaps you’ve been taking daily walks or spending more time with your family rather than on your phone. Perhaps you’ve been gardening or cooking more at home than you ever did before. Reflect on the habits that make you feel good and make a plan to keep them in your life as your schedule fills up.

“I’ve been reminded that health and family are my essentials,” Stiles says of the past year. “I learned when we allow our passion to take different forms and stay open to change, we are often even more impactful and fulfilled. It happened for me.”

Tips for success

As things change once again, Stiles advises taking it slowly.

“Get down to the ground every day and breathe deep. Do your yoga with ease. Move like you love yourself,” she says. “Take deep breaths in the middle of challenge. You’re doing great. You deserve to feel better.”