Bubble Baths & Blogilates: A Coronavirus Wellness Routine

Welcome to Refinery29’s Feel Good Diaries, where we chronicle the physical and mental wellness routines of women today, their costs, and whether or not these self-care rituals actually make you feel good. Have your own Feel Good Diary about how you're coping around the COVID-19 outbreak? We'd love to hear how you're prioritizing your mental and physical health at this time. Submit your entry here!
Today:  A 23-year-old leasing manager, bubble bath enthusiast, and cooking novice finds wellness through moderation.
Age: 23
Location: Syracuse, NY
Occupation: Leasing Manager
Salary: $50,000
Day One
7:45 a.m. — I woke up and had a cup of coffee, made an English muffin, and sat on my deck. I’m not a morning person at all, so waking up on time is difficult for me. I typically snooze my alarm 5+ times, so when I actually wake up on the first alarm, I like to relax, enjoy my coffee, and eat breakfast. I sat on my deck and just enjoyed the warm air, scrolled on my phone a little, and soaked in the free time I had before work. It felt really good to be up earlier than I usually am, and have time to just chill and not be rushing to get up out of bed and get working.
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In mid-March, I had started working from home due to the coronavirus. After around three weeks, we decided to head back into the office (with precaution). I needed to get mail, make copies, and use my computer, so this was the best option for me. It’s only myself and two other people who work in the office and we each have our own separate spaces, so I feel safe.
Typically, I get into my office, go through my emails and classify what’s most important for that day and what can wait. I handle all the leasing for an apartment building so I’ll usually go through and answer any quick questions from tenants first to get those over with so I don’t forget. I follow a monthly calendar because each week requires different things. In the beginning of the week, I make sure to cash any rent checks and coordinate move-ins for that month, etc. I also have to pay bills for the building — any maintenance, cable, internet, etc., so I try to get those done as soon as they come in. I typically leave inquiries from potential tenants until I have more free time so that I can give as much detail as possible, because I think it makes it more personable instead of just firing off a basic answer when people reach out.
With coronavirus it’s been weird because we haven’t been doing building tours, so everything has been virtual. I haven’t met any of the new tenants in person yet; I’ll meet them when they come to get their keys, which is strange because we talk over email so much and I feel like I know them.
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11:30 a.m. — I order lunch, an ahi tuna poke salad with rice noodles and miso sesame ginger dressing, ($15) from one of my favorite restaurants. I decide to walk to pick it up instead of hopping in my car for the short drive. It's a beautiful day, and being in the sun felt really refreshing. I returned home feeling more motivated to continue working and get things done.
8 p.m. — I ended the day by taking a bubble bath with the new soap I bought (Dr Teal's Hemp Seed Oil bubble bath, $5) and relaxing. I really enjoy taking a bubble bath every few days and just sitting and enjoying the silence and solitude. If I get bored, I'll pull out my phone and online shop or watch TikTok videos to further enjoy my time relaxing. I've been feeling overwhelmed with work, so it was nice to just hop in the tub and relax for a bit.
Daily Total: $20
Day Two
10 a.m. — On days when I don't eat breakfast right after waking up (most days I'm not hungry right away) I tend to get hungry around 10 a.m. I'm at my office downtown alone, so I walk to a nearby bagel shop that I love, and get a bagel and a Snapple to take back with me ($5). They have a window on the front of the shop that you pick up your orders from, but it was nice to see the people working there, as we have this kind of friendship now since they recognize me from going there so often. Getting that little bit of social interaction and fresh air rejuvenated me and helped me get back to work with more energy.
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6 p.m. — I have some ground beef in the fridge that is probably going to expire soon, so I decide to make my mom's meat sauce recipe. It's pretty much one of the only things I can cook without screwing up (I’m not exactly a gourmet chef). It's pretty simple to make, just brown the ground beef in a pan (you can use any meat you like or even just skip the meat) and then chop up whatever veggies you enjoy (I like red and green peppers, mushrooms, garlic and onion) and sauté those a little, then add it all together in a pot with red sauce. I like to eat it with spaghetti. Being that it's so simple to make, it gives me a boost of confidence to cook it and then actually enjoy the way it tastes. I'm definitely intimidated by cooking, so small victories like this help me feel like I can do even more.
Daily Total: $5
Day Three
6 p.m. — I have a whole bunch of laundry piling up, so I finally get myself organized and start to get it done. I don't mind doing laundry, but I hate folding it and putting it away (probably because I have way too much clothing and trying to find a place for everything is nearly impossible — whoops). Being able to get it started means that I have to follow through and finish the job.
8 p.m. — I'm sitting around waiting for my laundry to be done, so I decide to watch some workout videos and get moving. My favorite (free) channel on YouTube is Blogilates, I've been watching on and off since I was probably 17 or 18 years old. I did an ab and butt workout, and decided to try an arm workout. Though I was sweaty and tired, I felt really good afterwards. I felt refreshed and motivated to continue exercising throughout the week and weekend.
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Daily Total: $0
Day Four
9 a.m. — I took off work for the morning to spend some time with my mom. My family is from Long Island and they still live there — I moved to Syracuse after I finished college in upstate New York. My mom is heading to Buffalo for the week to visit family, and stopped by to see me on the way up. Even though I'm not a kid anymore, I feel like I'll always need my mom, and any time I get to spend with her makes me happy. I enjoyed just hanging out with her and drinking my coffee (she prefers tea) and relaxing all morning with her before getting to work.
7 p.m. — It's a beautiful night, not too hot or too cold, so I decided to go for a run, which is something I have never done in my life. I've always joked that I don't know how to run, which is why I never do it. I'm only half kidding. I think it has more to do with the fact that I think I look funny, so I don't want to do it. It was just so nice out and I didn't want to sit home all night, I wanted to be outside. I took off with my headphones and dance music playing to get me pumped up. I live in a hill-y neighborhood, so I just went down and around different streets with no intended path until I looped back around to my house. I felt very motivated and proud of myself.
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8 p.m. — I get back from running and want to keep moving. I pull an exercise mat onto my deck and decide to do more workouts from Blogilates outside. I did an ab workout and a butt workout. I enjoyed the fresh air and sun setting. I felt accomplished and relaxed.
Daily Total: $0
Day Five
5:30 p.m. — I decide to stop at my favorite grocery store (Aldi) and pick up a bunch of groceries: cereal, coffee creamer, lemonade, butter, eggs, milk, yogurt, mini muffins, granola bars, bread, rolls, pickles, mochi, dressing, lettuce, cheese, and other items ($60). I enjoy grocery shopping — really, any kind of shopping — because I love to browse. I love the social interaction with the employees and other shoppers. Especially now with limited social interaction, going to the grocery store was very enjoyable because I got to talk with people and ask how they are. I felt very happy and it made my day a bit brighter. 
6 p.m. — I bought several cucumbers, tomatoes, and onions at the grocery store to make cucumber salad for myself. This is something that my friend's mom made growing up, so it's kind of nostalgic for me to eat now. It's another easy thing that I can make myself, and it's pretty easy. I looked up a recipe for the dressing, which is the most complicated part but still easy. I cut up all the veggies and threw it all together, then split it up into dishes and put it in the fridge. I was proud of myself for trying this, and pretty impressed that I didn't screw it up.
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Daily Total: $60
Day Six
10 a.m. — Since it's a nice day, I decide to give my car some much-needed TLC. I start by throwing out anything inside that's unnecessary or trash (coffee cup, old receipts, napkins I used to clean up coffee I spilled on myself) then I took everything in my car out. I have a seat cover filled with dog hair in the back seat from my two dogs that needs to be cleaned. I also have a TJ Maxx bag with a couple pairs of summery shoes in the back seat that I was too lazy to bring in the house previously. I have sunglasses and hand sanitizer and earrings in the front console — everything needs to go.
Once everything was out, I wiped down every surface. After, I go to the gas station nearby and get a car wash, and vacuum the seats. I stop at the dollar store to get some tire spray and seat cleaner. I get home and wash the fabric of the seats, then spray the tires. It feels so good to finally do this, because I had been putting it off for months (mostly because I didn't want to do it when it was cold out). ($26)
2 p.m. — I hate water (I know) but if I put fresh lemon or even lemon juice in it I can get myself to drink it. I had just bought a bunch of lemons, so I fill a big glass of fresh lemon water and go out on my deck with a towel and just laid out in the sun for a while. It's so relaxing to just sit and drink water and soak up the sun. It just snowed here in upstate NY only about two or three weeks ago, so the fact that it's 75 degrees out right now felt amazing. I put on some music and just sit outside for a few hours.
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Daily Total: $26
Day Seven
9:30 a.m. — Typically on the weekends my body just wakes up around 8:00 a.m., so when I can sleep in, I do. I decided not to set an alarm last night, and I woke up around 9:00 a.m. I stay in bed and just went in and out of consciousness until deciding to get up around 9:30 a.m. It feels good at first, but then by the time I got my day going it was around 11 a.m., and I felt like I wasted the morning. I have to remind myself that my body probably needs the rest, and that there's still so much time left in the day to enjoy myself and my day off.
3 p.m. — It's a nice day, and I want to get out of the house, so my boyfriend and I drive a few towns over to our favorite ice cream place. We roll down the windows and put on summer music and just enjoy the fresh air. This was the first time I've gotten ice cream in a while, so it made me very happy. My usual order is a chocolate vanilla twist with rainbow sprinkles ($6). I'm not big on dessert, but every once in awhile I love to get ice cream or something sweet like a smoothie, just to enjoy myself. It felt really nice to do, because it made me feel like summer is finally starting soon.
Daily Total: $6
Weekly Total: $117
Reflection: I don't really have a great wellness "routine." Every week is different and based on my mood. But this is something I'd like to improve. I think working out regularly is important. I already eat pretty healthy, but I could definitely be better about exercising and moving more frequently. The warm, sunny weather really makes me feel motivated to move and do things. I wake up feeling motivated and refreshed and I actually want to be outside. The most negative is the anxiety I feel some days. Every so often I get so anxious about nothing that it just totally derails my plans. I find myself avoiding the things I need to do even though I know I need to do them. So when I can push through feeling anxious and get things done, I feel proud of myself.

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