IMPROVE YOUR LIFESTYLE DURING THE PANDEMIC

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Exercising and healthy eating concept: overhead view of rainbow colored dumbbells, jump rope, water bottle, towel, tape measure and healthy fresh organic vegetables, fruits and nuts arranged side by side on white background. The composition includes spinach, tomato, carrot, banana, apple, blueberry, almonds, orange, celery, grape among others. High resolution 29Mp panoramic format studio digital capture taken with SONY A7rII and Zeiss Batis 40mm F2.0 CF lens

There’s a variety of ways to improve your lifestyle

The Covid 19 pandemic has changed people’s lives in many and varied ways. With lockdowns, restricted access to services and entertainment and the inability to meet face-to-face, the ability to show initiative has been precious.

People have taken to different pursuits as a means to improving their lifestyle and their overall well-being.

The uptake in new crafts and hobbies has seen a seismic shift since the beginning of the outbreak. Suddenly, people have been undertaking language courses, learning to bake and cook, with an increase in interests such as photography, bird-watching and water colours.

The pandemic has also brought about other changes in societal behaviour. There has been a meteoric rise in online shopping because of the inability to shop in store, especially during the more severe lockdown restrictions.

The sales of specialty items

Large sections of the community have been restricted to their homes unless they were leaving their property for one of the 5 key reasons as outlined by the relevant government;

  1. Shopping for essentials
  2. To get vaccinated
  3. Care or caregiving
  4. Authorised work or education that cannot be done from home
  5. Exercising for up to two hours

These restrictions have come into effect sporadically throughout the Covid 19 pandemic and as case numbers have risen. 

With more time spent at home, it is no great surprise that people have found reason to examine their lifestyle in closer scrutiny.

It is during these periods of restricted movement that online purchases for specialty items have grown considerably.

Some of the items to have gained in popularity have included;

  • Coffee machines
  • Cooking equipment and appliances
  • Bedding such as a new mattress or sleep accessories like sheets, pillows, mattress pads and protectors
  • Lamps and lighting 
  • Personal grooming supplies and appliances
  • Fitness and sports equipment

The list goes on, but the change of focus to a more home oriented one is a clear sign of the effects of the Covid restrictions.

Someone who may not have given much thought to their bedding or the way they sleep is now adamant that they need a new pressure mattress and a bed alarm. It could be that they have seen a way to improve their sleep and now take up a strict exercise regime that requires an earlier start in the day.

Changes to typical diets have also seen an overhaul with better eating habits and a concentration on home cooked and home baked meals at an all-time high.

The fitter person for a fuller life

Improving one’s lifestyle has brought about a steady growth in fitness.

If there has been one benefit from the restrictions upon people’s movements since the Covid outbreak, the most obvious is the increase in people exercising.

Taking up the opportunity to leave the house for up to an hour or two in the pursuit of exercise has led to a sharp rise in walking, jogging and running as well as bike riding.

The availability of new bicycles shrank in a matter of months in early 2020. Many retailers who would normally have 100’s of bikes in stock then found themselves with just a handful to display on the floor of their shop.

It has been reported that the bicycle industry sold 6 to 7 months of stock in the same amount of weeks. The ripple effect was the increase in demand for second hand bikes and those with the ability to restore them.

Other changes in society during the pandemic

There have been a number of other changes in society with more dramatic consequences than either online purchasing habits or fitness endeavours.

Many couples have seen the effects of the Covid 19 pandemic as a wake-up call to the way they were living and where they lived.

There has been a growth in people moving away from the city and urban living to seek a calmer life in a rural setting. This has been made possible through the increasing ability for people to work from home. 

The other significant change was in how and when couples viewed their chances of beginning a family.

Would it be right to bring a child into this unsettling and uncertain world or would it be a chance to stake a claim in a brighter future?

In Australia, there has been a spike in births of more than 5 per cent in both Victoria and NSW from the end of 2020. Whilst this is not a baby boom in any measure, it has surprised the forecasters of birth rates.

There will not and, due to Covid protocols, cannot be an increase in the demand for a live in nanny or au pair but that hasn’t seen the heavy drop in couples choosing to have a child. 

The pandemic effects on IVF

Despite the growing interest in fitness and health throughout the Covid pandemic, the issue of declining fertility rates remains.

The demand for IVF treatments has seen a steady rise throughout recent years. Reports show that nearly 1 in 20 births in Australia were part of an IVF treatment performed in 2018.

Globally, there have been more than eight million babies born through IVF programs.

Over the last few years, there has been a growing international focus on IVF sex selection and the overall IVF gender selection cost. In Australia, there has been no change to the legislation that states gender selection through IVF is prohibited, except if a baby is at risk.

The world of IVF treatments has seen a series of interruptions with intermittent lockdowns and the restrictions of couples to visit their chosen clinic for the next step in the procedure.

This impacted many services and was felt most dramatically within Victoria through the extended lockdown of 2020.

The changes to lifestyles

There is clear evidence that no part of life has been unaffected by the Covid pandemic.

Working and studying from home has meant families are spending more time together. Couples are left with decisions of whether to proceed with plans that involved everything from weddings to starting a family.

International travel has been taken off the list of possibilities and in some cases, even domestic travel has been curtailed due to the chances of a lockdown impacting a holiday.

Despite all the seemingly negative effects of the pandemic on people’s lives, there has been a continued drive to maintain as healthy a lifestyle as possible.

There has been a growing uncertainty that has come with living through a global pandemic. Whether the measures of self-improvement that people have undertaken will survive throughout the phases of opening up remains to be seen. 

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