Lockdown hit hard and fast -our normal everyday lives suddenly looked very different. It can be incredibly  hard to cope with such extreme changes and actually it is perfectly natural to feel a range of feelings and emotions.  Lockdown was difficult enough without being bombarded with advertisements from fitness companies and a constant stream of ‘ Stay Fit’ and ‘ How to avoid lockdown weight gain’ on many social media sites. The pressure that was put on many of us to stay active during such a difficult time was immense.

Conflicting Messages…

We were being told by the government  to stay indoors as much as possible in order to keep ourselves and others safe yet social media reflected a very different message -one that often felt like it was making people feel guilty or lazy for not going to the gym or exercising as usual. While the messages were mixed it was very easy to fall under the spell of such toxic messages relating to weight gain during lockdown.

You are worthy

Lilypads are here to tell you – Your body is beautiful just the way it is! It doesn’t matter if you put on a few pounds during lockdown or that your body feels different. We are all surviving an incredibly stressful event- a pandemic. Our bodies can go into survival mode and its actually a normal response to want to eat more. However we also understand it can be incredibly triggering if you have suffered with issues surrounding food or weight gain in the past. But just know that your body is powerful and there is help out there.  We have signposted at the end of this blog some fantastic organisations out there who can help if you are feeling like you are in a tough spot right now.

So what about post lockdown?

Now we are out of lockdown and beginning to branch out into the world we want you to do one thing- Ask yourself how am I feeling? Checking in with yourself is so important. Its your body and yours alone so making friends with it is half the battle. Don’t beat yourself up for the fact you ate more during a lifechanging pandemic or that you missed the gym for a few months. You survived, you got through it and are hopefully coming out the other side of it. Having some coping strategies is key to dealing with whatever the world throws at you next. Start by doing what makes you feel good – if that is hitting the gym then do it but if its going for cake with friends then do that too! Do what makes you feel best and happy!

Humans we love

Its also key to note there is some amazing things happening on social media right now in particular Instagram. Body activists are providing a safe space for us to accept and love our bodies. Here at lilypads we have a few favorite accounts we love to follow for their inspiring and inspirational content. Check out @chachipowerprojectwho is advocate of body confidence and self love, @em_clarksonfor uplifting and empowering content on body acceptance and lastly @curvynyome for body love and mental health content.

If you are having a tough time loving your body that’s ok-don’t beat yourself up about it- but even looking at some real and authentic bodies that come in all shapes and sizes on Instagram can make you feel empowered and inspired. Instagram can be such a supportive space but equally it can be a destructive one at times. If there’s accounts you follow for fitness or health inspiration just make sure you are indeed following them for that reason. If for whatever reason you start to feel pressured or anxious take a break from Instagram or even mute the accounts who might be triggering you- this is a powerful step you can take yourself to feel better.

Love Lilypads x

Organisations to reach out to for help to

https://www.beateatingdisorders.org.uk/support-services/helplines

https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/eating-disorders/

https://www.samh.org.uk/