Exercising and weight loss have always been intrinsically linked for years, but new research has revealed that more and more women are working out for another reason. According to a recent poll of 2,000 gym goers, we’re hitting the treadmill to lower our blood pressure and cholesterol rather than drop the pounds.
Improving our health has officially become more important than loosening our waistbands. But, it has meant that more of us are being struck down by the next-day aches and pains, and in some cases injuries. The poll showed that women go to the gym around 15 times a month, which works out at three to four times a week. Yet, three fifths of those complained of tiredness and stiff, achy muscles after exercising. Read More…
For years, we’ve been told that walking 10,000 steps every day is the fitness benchmark. In fact, the idea dates back to the Tokyo Olympics in 1964. Yet, a new study questioned this archaic piece of advice and proved it wrong.
Medical journalist, Michael Mosley joined forces with professor Rob Copeland from Sheffield Hallam University to compare the fitness benefits of walking 10k every day to the Active 10. The latter is a newer approach that follows the quality not quantity ethos and recommends that we take a brisk ten minute walk, ideally three times a day rather than a specific amount of steps.
The exercise routine I follow goes like this: I begin the day thinking I’ll go for a run at lunchtime, and/or a 7 pm yoga class. But as the time draws closer, my mind will resist. The sun is setting, I’ve got to finish some work – a whole list of excuses suddenly comes to mind. It takes an iron will to ignore those resistant voices in my head even though I’ve never regretted going once I’m done. I know that it’s good for me to get moving. A stack of scientific research shows that those who exercise are less susceptible to serious disease. Most importantly, I feel much better when I’m active, so why do I so often choose the easier option – to stay in and watch a box-set instead?
There is an evolutionary explanation for this. Our ‘fight or flight mechanism’ means we are hard wired to do the minimum to survive. Thousands of years ago – when finding food was a life or death situation – we needed to conserve energy in order to fight predators. Now that our lives are sedentary, food is generally on tap, this natural response in our bodies hasn’t changed, therefore we rely on willpower and our minds to stay active. Read More…
Did you know that between 60 and 70 percent of the world’s population lead a sedentary lifestyle. It has been reported that over a quarter of the adults in England were classified as obese with over 20 percent of the UK respondents reporting that they took walks of at least twenty minutes ‘less than once a year or never’. Unlike our ancestors who led an active lifestyle of hunting and gathering food, the 21st century lifestyle is predominantly sedentary with a lot of free time spent watching the television or using the computer, often accompanied with snacks such as crisps and chocolate. If you fit into this category then it is time to shake up your sedentary lifestyle and to start incorporating beneficial exercise and activities into your lifestyle.
We all know what exercise does for our bodies: keeping them toned, sleeker, melting fat, lowering cholesterol and reducing cancer rates, busting stress, yada-yada-yada… But less well recognised is that exercise is your biggest beauty treatment of all – and as the words ‘Quantitative Easing’ still swirl ominously in our brains, it’s worth remembering that they’re f-r-e-e… What’s more, with autumn upon us, gorgeous crunchy leaves on the ground and breezes blowing in, is there a better time to get outdoors, lace up our shoes, and enjoy the beautifying benefits of exercise…?
From reducing acne breakouts to helping to defy time, health (and skin) experts are now saying that regular exercise can play an important role in how young and healthy your skin feels and looks. As Dr.Audrey Kunin, dermatologist and author of The DERMAdoctor Skinstruction Manual (you can find it in this country via www.amazon.co.uk) acknowledges: ‘It’s no secret that exercise has important benefits for the entire body. But what many people don’t realise is that the skin is the largest organ of the body, and so the benefits can be enormous.’
Aside from the benefits of increased circulation, which we’re probably all familiar with, exercise benefits the complexion by creating the right environment for your skin to build collagen – and collagen is one of the two most important elements (the other is elastin) in maintaining skin’s ‘bounce-back’ factor. (You know: that plumpness and springiness that youthful skin has, but which tends to diminish as the years tick by.) ‘Our fibroblasts – which are the collagen-producing cells in the skin – become fewer in number and “lazier” as we get older,’ says Dr. Kunin. But if you rev up your exercise regime, skin becomes infused with oxygen and other nutrients which set up ideal conditions for collagen production. Read More…