Quarantine Diet

Quarantine Diet

Oh quarantine, you have changed my life- and so many others. Not just physically, but emotionally, psychologically, and let's not forget the diet changes that needed to be made.

We've been challenged with battling sudden loneliness, boredom, confusion, and uncertainty. Some days we rise to the challenge and other days we lay in bed or bake comforting desserts. Trust me, those desserts comforted me through the first 2 months. My body started to change.

I was no longer sprinting up and down the streets of NYC. When I was doing that I could afford to eat sweets & carbs more often. I was eating to fuel myself for the long days I had. I was honestly overdoing it.

When I got to North Carolina at the beginning of quarantine, I assumed I could eat the same quantities- a pretty large breakfast, lunch, dinner, and dessert. I started to gain weight. This was upsetting at first because I thought I needed all of that food. I relied on my long, physically strenuous schedule to keep me lean in addition to group fitness classes and my own workouts.

Once quarantine began, I wasn't moving as much, but I quickly realized I had been moving too much. Now, I work remotely, I don't run to public transportation, I can't take group fitness classes, and all of that is OK.

If you feel like you are moving less during this uncertain time, remind yourself that it is ok, and that so long as you're getting some form of exercise in each day, whether its just a walk, a casual bike ride, or a weight training session with the weights you bought on Amazon, that's great.

After a few months into quarantine, I realized I don't need the same amount of food, especially protein, as I had been consuming. Food is fuel and it must be matched with our levels of activity. I learned how to adjust my macronutrients to lose the weight I had gained and maintain the body that makes me feel like myself.

Adjusting Your Macronutrients 

Before adjusting your macros to match your exact needs, the ratio is set at 40:40:20 (40% carbs, 40% protein, 20% fat).

In the city, my protein was intense. My ratio was probably 30:60:10. It was aggressive and definitely not necessary for my new lifestyle. I had cut fat very low, my carbs were moderately high, and my protein was very high!

What I've found works best is first decreasing the size of each meal simply because I don't expend the same amount of calories. I've also aimed for a better, healthier BALANCE. I brought back in healthy fats, decreased carbs (especially the refined sugar because I am not in need of as much quick energy/it's unhealthy), and I dropped my protein slightly because, again, I am not training as intensely and I've lowered the weights that I use when I train.

Try adjusting your macros if you feel you are struggling with your new level of activity. If you find you are sitting for the majority of the day, your ratio may be 30:50:20 or 20:40:40, with carbs being the lowest.

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