This week, I have a guest post from Darren Pyefinch who runs Vibrant Fit. He is a level 3 Personal Trainer and gives us his advice on how to look after yourself during lockdown so that you can continue to work effectively. Take it away Darren ...
Joe Wicks, Davina McCall, Jennifer Lopez ... yes, they've all been coaching millions of people during lockdown in fitness videos botj online and on TV. It's a great thing to see and long overdue.
Ultimately, we evolved from animals and are hard-wired to move as hunter-gatherers. Many people became a bit too comfy and sedentary pre-and during a lockdown. "Why bother exercising though?" you might ask, "if we're stuck inside anyway?"
Well, here's are 6 very good reasons why you should bother:
- Being active for just 30 mins per day can reduce the risk of the UK's biggest killer, Cardiovascular disease (CVD), by 35%. Millions of working days are lost every year due to this.
High blood pressure is at epidemic proportions and often the root causes are simply masked by doctors handing out medication. It's important to start investigating the real reasons why you've got it.
Try walking for 20 mins a day and gradually increasing up to an hour a day. Use a heart-rate monitor and use the following equation: 180 minus your age minus 5 to calculate your optimal heart rate for exercising. For me, it's 129 so if I keep my heart rate between 119 and 129, then I know I'm doing myself some good.
- Your metabolic age is derived by how much weight you can lift, how strong your core is, what your cardio levels are and how long can you exercise whilst out of breath. There are apps now that can work this all out for you and compare you to huge datasets across the population.
Mine is the equivalent to a 33-year-old (I'm 46) Do you know what yours is?
- There is an epidemic also of mental health-related working days lost. OCD, depression, and anxiety are some of the UK's leading cause of lost productivity. More importantly, they are responsible for a huge churn in the workplace where people are simply unhappy.
The current trend is for people to be open about their problems. This is a step in the right direction, but often doesn't solve the issue.
Did you know that alcohol dependence is one of the biggest causes of anxiety, OCD, and depression? Having a drink 3 days a week is classed as alcohol dependence. What would happen if you tried to stop drinking for a month? Test it and see. Notice how you are feeling.
- Whilst what the celebs mentioned above do is great. Have you ever tried to keep up with them? They are super fit and many people simply don't have the base level of fitness to keep up. Worse still many people get injured trying to keep up.
It's important to start slowly and with someone who can look after you. Pick a coach that knows how to tailor the exercise to your current level. Start slowly with light weights or even bodyweight exercises.
- Your mindset is always key. One of the most common reasons people give to me about training is "I'm not a gym person" You know what? Neither am I! I've never hung around in gyms in lycra nor taking endless selfies.
Write down what reasons you don't think exercise is for you. "I'm not comfortable training in groups", or "I'm really out of shape and feel I won't be any good", or maybe even "I'm too old for this nonsense". I've heard all these many times.
Then say them out loud and ask if that's always been true. Have you always been out of shape? Have you always felt self-conscious? Or just some of the time? The truth is we all used to be able to run around when we were younger, and you know what we can do it again!
I regularly coach over 40's and even up to 73 years old. They often start with zero fitness, but quickly pick it up and gain confidence.
- The elephant in the room ... is COVID-19. Stay safe and be careful obviously. Whilst you may not be able to stop picking it up, the current evidence is that COVID-19 affects people with a DNA variant in the ACE2 receptor. This isn't something you can train for.
You can boost your immune system by getting an hour outside every day. Vitamin D is fundamental to maintaining the human immune system and making it run smoothly. There is also strong evidence that A, D and K supplements all boost your immune system.
And finally, take a cold shower for 10 seconds at the end of your shower. This is proven to make you more resilient. In Eastern Europe, Scandinavia, and Russia this is common practice.
Thank you Darren! Darren Pyefinch runs Vibrant Fit. He is a Level 3 Personal Trainer, Certified Bulletproof Life Coach and Ali-Campbell trained CMA hypnotherapist. He helps people get to their optimal weight, increase their energy and feel good.
If you feel inspired to find out more about anything I've said here, do call me on 01908 774320 or leave a comment below and I'll be in touch as soon as I can.