January 22, 2021 – …Leah Whigman, associate professor at UTHealth School of Public Health in El Paso, told VICE. “Is there any value in saying, I screwed up big time, I’m going to die earlier now? Or is it better to say, It was a rough year, we had extreme challenges from a mental health perspective, and give ourselves a break so we can embrace healthier goals as we move forward?” 

Or, in other words, a year of no socializing, no moving, and more drinking should not cause major health issues in the coming years (within reason, and unless your new habits are here to stay). VICE asked doctors what it might look like to “bounce back” from some of the common coping mechanisms, side effects, and unavoidably stressful situations we experienced in the past year. Here’s what they had to say.  Excessive drinking,” according to the CDC, means eight or more drinks per week for women, or 15 or more per week for men, based on average body size. This amount of drinking, as a lifestyle is tied to early mortality.  Working from home can be extremely good: As workers previously told VICE, many find at least some amount of work-from-home flexibility preferable to being in an office every single day. But working from home is still an adjustment, and one that most people made under duress this year; for many, it meant trying to juggle work and kids and family in the same cramped space. It can also lead to a total lack of barrier between your personal and work life… 

If you stopped working out when the gyms closed, and then refused to go back when your gym reopened mid-pandemic, you’re definitely not alone. This has been a year of survival mode, and anything more physically stressful than that—like lifting weights, maintaining a running schedule, etc.—has felt like too much. While Whigman emphasized that adults generally need about 30 minutes of cardiovascular exercise per day (this could be as simple as a walk, or a half-hour of yoga), you can simply start moving around more when you feel like it and get back to feeling healthier.


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