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  • Writer's pictureSamantha Dawn

Routine Changes in "Self-Isolation"

COVID-19 brought the world a lot of fear and uncertainty. On March 16, my life was normal and then at 8:07am I got the email that said I should be working from home. It's been over 100 days of figuring out my life and new routines and it's been the weirdest few months of my life. If anything, I've actually made a life that works better now than it did pre-covid. It took a while to establish routines that worked and it also took a while to get used to everything.

I must say, I live in New Brunswick, so my routine has always shifted to reflect the regulations.

I have multiple routines that all work together and I follow the regulations and hand washing to a T. I still get anxious when starting new things or trying new things in this COVID-19 world, but as long as I try with an open mind and stay safe, I tend to be okay. Here are some of the biggest routine changes.


Commuting to work:

I used to walk 20 minutes to work and then at the end of the day would walk home. In the summer, I took my bike. I spent a lot of time commuting (it wasn't a lot of time, but definitely love it more now)

Now I get out of bed at 7ish when I am not biking for exercise and actually enjoy my coffee. Then I walk upstairs to my office.


I was exercising five times before COVID-19. Twice on Mondays and once Wednesday, Thursday, and Saturday. This routine was one of the first that I was actually sticking to so when we started staying home, I was pretty mad.

During the first part of self-isolation, we went on a lot of walks, ranging from 1-3 times a day. We also did home workouts from fitness content creators and Beach Body. I also did the Sweat Clubs 28 day fitness challenge to pull me out of the no exercising I was doing. We also have a work chat where our in-house fitness colleague creates daily workouts.

Once it was nice enough to bike, I started biking for fun and then doing a harder bike ride once a week. I was still doing some weight training, but let's be real, it was mostly long walks, light bike rides, and harder bike rides.

Then the gym opened and I was able to safely go. Now, my routine is Monday,Wednesdays, and Fridays at 6:30am, I wake up and go for a long bike ride. On Monday, Tuesday or Thursday, Saturday, and Sunday I go to the gym. Typically, I do legs on Monday, arms and back Tuesday or Thursday, cardio on Saturday, and yoga on Sunday. I am in the midst of a weight-loss year, which I set out to do in January and I do a lot of cardio.


Before, I used to meal prep to a certain extent. I would make meals, but then I would get bored and buy my lunch or supper.

I quickly found out that I didn't need as much food as before because I was moving less. I stopped meal prepping and I stopped eating the same snacks every day. I actually love working from home because my meals are different every day. I buy ingredients that can make multiple kinds of recipes and eat whatever I want, within reason. I also realized, that when you only do one grocery shop a week and you don't go 3-4 times, the bill is way higher, but it's actually not because I'm not buying as many random things as I would on my 3-4 trips.

The biggest change was that I am no longer bored with my meals, so I eat at restaurants far less frequently and am actually just not spending money on that. When I do order takeout, it's actually just enjoyable.


Nothing has really changed, except I started shopping more online, but also, I have made a huge push in shopping local. I quickly realized that m favourite local shops wouldn't make it, if we didn't start to shop local and now I make a point to try and find it locally first and if I can't, then I order online. I have found some great items and it's been a lot of fun.

I have also now limited how much shopping I do because it's super fun, but can add up quickly.

Seeing friends and going out:

At first I couldn't see anyone and going out was out of the question. It was hard doing Zoom chats with friends, but eventually I got used to it. When restrictions were being lifted, I think the biggest challenge was knowing if I was on the same page as everyone else. I am a huge rule follower, so I wanted to make sure the people I was seeing were also following the rules. As with anything new, I proceeded with caution. Thus far everyone has been really understanding and we all follow the rules.

Not going out isn't difficult. I never really liked it, so nothing really changed there. I think figuring out fun things to do though at first was hard because it was pretty much "no fun" and then things started to lighten up and it was easier.


Overall, I really spent a lot of time figuring out what I was comfortable with and set some big boundaries to make sure I was taken care of. My mental health is #1 and everything else takes a back seat, so if I need a break, I take a break. I've settled into a great routine and would really only be able to do it, if I was working from home.

I take things slowly and do things for myself. I was very lucky to be able to work from home and am grateful for my amazing work family. It was rough, but now I am loving my new routines. I really like working from home because I get a lot more self-care time and I am not rushing to get stuff done.

Thanks to everyone for your love, patience, and understanding. There were definitely times I was freaking out over stuff and you made it easier for me.

All my love, Sam


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