The Monaco-based wellness festival In Your Element moved its event online last week to help the Principality battle lockdown blues. Starting last week, some of the leading experts in the fields of nutrition, fitness and spiritual practice held online classes and went on Instagram Live to share their knowledge. We have prepared a short guide on how to stay motivated during lockdown and to focus on your mental wellbeing.
In part two, we are speaking to Chiara Lewis, personal trainer, and Michaella Bolder, beauty expert.
Chiara Lewis, personal trainer
The most popular question today is, how do we avoid gaining weight during lockdown?
The same rules as normal life rules apply: eat nutrient-rich food like fruit and vegetables, whole grains, lean proteins and Omega-3 foods like nuts, avocado and salmon. Balance your plate, move your body as much as you can and train for at least 30 minutes almost every day. My tip would be to try and “snack” on exercise: if you are working from home try and get up from your desk every hour and do ten squats, or ten press-press ups or hold a plank for 30 seconds and so on. Also get plenty of sleep, at least 8 hours per night. Try to manage your stress and anxiety level with breathing exercises and meditation techniques.
How to find the right balance between rest and physical activity?
This will vary, of course, depending on what your goals are: strength, flexibility, general fitness, training for a race, et cetera. It will also rely on how active you were before lockdown. A general piece of advice is to mix it up and not to underestimate the importance of rest days. For instance, even if your goal is improving your fitness, try not to fall into the temptation to do HIIT every day. Make sure you alternate High-Intensity sessions with strength and recovery ones for better performance. This will avoid the risk of injuries. An excellent way to know that you are doing the right amount of everything is to follow a plan. I have recently released a 12-week fitness plan on an iOS app, called BEAM – Balance Exercise and Mind.
Now every blogger has become a fitness trainer and gives advice online. How can you make sense of all these videos and training classes?
There are plenty of classes and workout ideas, you can find online at the moment, but before taking advice from anyone, make sure that the source of information is qualified enough to be trustworthy. It’s awful timing for injuries too, so make sure they know what they are talking about! And don’t let the number of followers on Instagram fool you. I’d recommend doing a quick background check – look at their LinkedIn profile or website, check their qualifications, if their knowledge is relevant and current and for how long they have been training clients for. Experience with clients is an essential one: training somebody else is very different from training yourself.
Michaella Bolder, beauty expert
What kind of home treatments can you recommend?
You can look after your skin very well at home by giving yourself a good skincare routine morning and night. Face massage, double cleansing your skin at night, using face tools like a jade roller or gua sha: these are effective and natural ways to lift and tone your face. Exfoliate your skin at least once a week and invest in some good face masks depending on your skin type and needs. Skincare is a very personal thing, so you can do online consultations with facialist to get bespoke advice. I do offer this online too.
What is your opinion about home care? Can it be better than in beauty studio?
You can develop a good skincare routine at home. It is good to invest in skincare, and this doesn’t mean expensive; do your research and look for brands with good reputations and ingredients your skin needs. I regularly review products on my page. Face massage is brilliant at lifting and tightening the skin and is better than many invasive treatments. I did a face massage video during the In Your Element weekend, it is still up on the page, so take a look!
What treatments should we do every day?
Make sure you cleanse your skin well night and day. I like to double cleanse at night rather than split across the morning and evening routine. You may be wearing less makeup, especially if you are isolating on your own. This is a great break for your skin. Do make sure you wear an SPF if you are going outside. Make sure your skin is hydrated, massage your products into your skin and repeat if necessary if skin feels tight and dry.
How can we stay “fresh” even if we are stuck at home all day?
Make sure you do try to get some Vitamin D and talk a walk outside wearing SPF if you can. Your body will benefit from natural sunlight. Eat a nutrient-rich diet with plenty of fresh fruit and vegetables, and make sure you include lots of nuts and seeds that provide vitamins and minerals that benefit your skin. Try and eat protein in every meal, collagen is protein, and we need it in our diet for healthy skin. You can take skin supplements to help give your skin a boost. As there are many on the market, do thorough research for what you think your skin needs and may be lacking from your diet. Get plenty of sleep, at least 8 hours a night, take regular exercise to get the blood flowing around the body – your skin will look fresh and bright if you have a good circulation.