Use it or lose it.


We have all heard the phrase use it or lose it. This applies predominantly to our physical fitness. As you will be aware to maintain a healthy body weight it is essential to combine a healthy diet with an active lifestyle.

 

But what sort of exercise is appropriate for you?

 

The best type of exercise for weight management is cardiovascular exercise. This activity increases your heart rate and exercises muscles.

 

An exercise regime of three or more times per week should enable you to fit you fitness programme into a busy lifestyle and achieve your goals of maintaining fitness levels important for both mind and body.

 

Effective exercising should make you feel slightly out of breath but do avoid pushing yourself to the point of exhaustion especially if this is at the beginning of your new exercise regime. It is best to start slowly and build up the time and intensity of your workout so you slowly increase your fitness levels. Once you have increased these levels, exercise will become easier and more enjoyable.

 

Opinions differ on how frequently exercise should take place but perceived wisdom is that a minimum of 30 minutes per session will have an impact on helping you achieve your goals. If you are able to exercise for longer then the goals will be achieved and maintained more quickly.

 

Exercise doesn’t have to mean going to the gym. Any activity that keeps your heart rate elevated will be worthwhile and this will include most team sports such as rugby, cricket, football and basketball  among others, as well as individual sports such as tennis, squash, and badminton which are also brilliant exercise.

 

Swimming, dancing, jogging, walking, aerobics, cycling and just generally being active will all contribute to achieving the goals that you desire for both your health and fitness.

 

One cautionary note, if you are over the age of 35 and you are beginning a new fitness regime then it would be wise to see your doctor if you have had a number of years of secondary lifestyle. The doctor will advise on the best and most effective means of easing you into increased activity and you should not hesitate to seek the advice.

 

 

Remember, Mayfair we care

 

Dealing with Severe Fatigue


Nowadays many of us live a life in a way that is not really natural for either our bodies, or in many cases, our mental state. Of course, we are tough and many will adapt sooner or later.

However, there are negative side effects that many of us have to deal with and severe fatigue is definitely one of those side effects.    

The pace of an average person's life has increased significantly over the past two decades. And even at primary school, we all have countless pressures and often too much to deal with.

Important Note:   Severe fatigue can be a side effect of countless diseases and mental illnesses, and as such it is extremely important to visit your personal doctor as soon as possible if you are facing constantly weary.        

What is Severe Fatigue?     

The severity of fatigue is rather hard to determine as we all deal with fatigue in different ways. What might be an extreme case for one person may be just tiredness for someone else and if you are simply tired, or even exhausted, by the end of a tough and long day, you are not facing severe fatigue. The term severe fatigue is used when one is constantly tired.

When one must deal with very low energy levels all day every  day for then you've probably got severe fatigue on your hands and should definitely schedule an appointment with your doctor to check your physical and mental health.

How to Fight Severe Fatigue?     

Once you have determined that the cause of severe fatigue doesn't actually lie in health issues, then it is time to take the matter in your own hands. For a healthy person to be facing severe fatigue, it absolutely means s/he is doing quite a few things wrong and that s/he should make some lifestyle changes ASAP.    

Understanding that modern-day pace of life can result in many perfectly healthy individuals facing severe fatigue too often. For those, we offer the following hints and tips to get your energy levels back to normal.     

Get more sleep    

Many of us deal with the crazy pace of work and life in general by creating longer days and cutting down on sleep hours to work longer or fit in some leisure time. Keep in mind that we all need to get between 7-9 hours of sleep every night. Sleep is basically recovery time and we just can't function properly without getting enough of it.    

Change your dietary habits    

Just as sleep is the recovery time, the food we consume is the fuel. If the fuel is of poor quality, it is just not providing our body with the nutrients it needs. Our body needs enough minerals, vitamins, healthy fats, fibre, proteins, and complex carbs. As such proper diet is as equally important as sleep. Examine the possibility of having a well balanced diet and try cutting out or reducing the amount of fast and processed food intake.   

Exercise      

It might sound strange to deal with severe fatigue by exercising, but a human body is built to move. You should aim to get at least 30 minutes of some sort of exercise performed daily. Walking is one of the healthiest choices. Also add some straight exercises, such as push-ups, squats, and lunges.

When we exercise our bodies produce hormones that will elevate your energy level and help you cope with severe fatigue.    

Everyone needs a relaxation    

If we are mentally exhausted, our physical state won't be any different. As such it is important to treat yourselves with some sort of relaxation that best suits you on a daily basis.

Meditation and Yoga (which will at the same time cover the above point) tend to be the most effective ones, but it can be anything you like that helps you relax and clear your mind; reading, or a hobby you enjoy are other alternatives to help you switch of from the daily grind.

In summary

If you believe you are dealing with severe fatigue, first schedule an appointment with your doctor. If you are physically and mentally healthy, you should change your lifestyle by improving all four aspects that affect your energy levels the most - SLEEP, DIET, EXERCISE, and RELAXATION.         

Good luck!

 

Mayfair, we care.

 

List of sources: 

https://www.healthline.com/health/fatigue#causes   https://www.webmd.com/balance/how-tired-is-too-tired#1   https://www.mayoclinic.org/symptoms/fatigue/basics/causes/sym-20050894   https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/248002.php

 

Move on up to a healthier mind.


 

Research indicates that people who exercise on a regular basis have better mental health and emotional well-being. So why are you sitting there?!

 

Exercise, as we know, is great for our physical health. It helps to keep our hearts in good shape and our weight under control. In general, we are lowering the overall risk of heart disease. However, being active has a knock on affect that is often overlooked as it is also a powerful mood booster and stress buster.

 

Working out doesn’t only exercise the body it also lowers the stress hormone cortisol, which in turn helps relieve feelings of anxiety. It encourages the brain to release endorphins and serotonin which are often referred to as the bodies’ feel-good chemicals because of the positive impact on mental health. So it is easy to see how exercise is not only helping you keep physically fit but also having a positive effect on your mental health.


Sleep

By exercising regularly the likelihood is that you will sleep better. Poor sleep quality and mood disorders have been closely linked. Sleeping well boosts cognition because your body works to support healthy brain function while you sleep.

 

Self-esteem

People who are active often report feeling a sense of achievement which in turn increases their self-esteem. When we make new year’s resolutions and stick to them this gives us a sense of empowerment and control over our lives with an increased ability to cope.

 

Social benefits

Not only does exercise give you the chance to try new experiences such as walking, gym, cycling and dance classes, it provides the perfect opportunity to socialise and meet new friends. When meeting new people and experiencing new situations, the mood is enhanced accordingly.

 

Energy boost.

Being more active increases your fitness and your energy levels and this also has the positive impact on your mental well-being.

 

Don’t be put off.

When you think of exercise you probably have a vision of working out in the sweaty gym toiling away! However, research has indicated that just 30 minutes of moderate to intensive working out each day can provide significant benefits to overall well-being. So forget the gym, put on the walking shoes and go for a quarter of an hours walk at lunchtime, and a quarter of an hours walk in the evening - whatever suits you!

 

The brain loves exercise.

There is a benefit to taking your first walk of the day before you go to work. Exercise pumps blood to the brain which increases your ability to think clearly. This will have clear benefits when you arrive at your place of work with a clear mind and an action plan.

 

In conclusion, regular exercise is a no-brainer, it is simply a matter of making it part of your daily routine because the benefits are enormous.

 

Remember Mayfair, we care.

 

What is the best time to exercise?

 

Are you a morning person or an evening person?

 

Morning people can spring out of bed ready for an early start and they are likely to live by the maxim that “the early bird catches the worm “. They will undertake their exercises before going to work and feel a certain self-satisfaction for having done so. They will also feel ready for the day ahead.

 

For others, leaping out of bed and going for exercise is something that is alien to them. They need that first coffee of the day before they feel human! So, for them, exercising at lunchtime or in the evening is more realistic and more likely to happen.

 

But does it matter? Are there advantages to exercising in the morning as opposed to the evening? We looked into it:


Morning people.

Those who exercise in the morning believes that it is an easier discipline to maintain. Making it the first task of the means that it is done, out of the way and they can move on Events of the day can often lead to a work out, or gym visit being put off – or so they believed.

 

There is research that suggests that early morning exercise is a great way to fire up the brain and increase alertness, and interestingly, reduced the potential for depression.

 

There is a simple reason for this – Endorphins.

 

Endorphins are a natural drug produced by the body during exercise that trigger a positive feeling in the body producing a more optimistic and energetic belief about yourself

 

There are those that will say that early morning exercise such as this kickstarts their day and makes them feel ready to take on anything that the day may throw at them – a positivity that will make the individual more productive.

 

Non-morning people

If you are not one of those who can cope with the thought of a run, a visit to the gym, or a bike ride first thing in the morning then don’t despair.

 

Did you know that muscle tone and body temperature begin to rise from 3 o’clock onwards? This makes afternoon the best time for strength training of vigourous exercise such as intense indoor cycling.

 

The afternoon is also when reaction time and flexibility are at a peak and this reduces the risk of injury.

 

However, be aware that exercise raises our core temperature, so exercise taken within four hours of bedtime could potentially make getting to sleep more difficult.

 

However different people experience different reactions therefore our conclusion would be that the best time to exercise is when it suits you, and when you feel you get the best out of the time spent exercising

Mayfair we care.

 

 

 

Does exercise improve your mood?


Every one of us has probably heard countless times that exercise and a full body check-up is good for us in more than one ways.

Maintaining a well-balanced lifestyle is one of the most challenging tasks in our modern lives. There are so many pressures from our profession, social lives, personal, family issues and others.

These matters are something all of us have to deal with on a daily basis. Sometimes it can get difficult trying to find a good balance between all these equally important aspects of our lives. While others are good at finding a balance, some will struggle throughout their entire lives. 

For those who struggle a lot, there is the possibility of mental stress which may lead to mental health issues at a later stage in their lives. In dealing with this problem, many health professionals have recommended the use of exercising as a major mechanism for dealing with stressful life and ultimately improving your mental capacity in dealing with the pressures of life.

Exercising is onerous at times when we just don’t feel like it, but it has numerous benefits besides building muscles and burning fat because it can be the most effective way of eliminating stress and improving your mood. 

Making it a habit

Getting regular exercise can help your body produce brain chemicals called endorphins that are known to improve mood. You don't even need to participate in an intense exercise, a brisk 20-minute walk should be enough to help your body produce these feel-good chemicals.

The best way of making the most of exercise is to find one that you enjoy and that you will carry out regularly to help maintain your fitness levels as well as your mood. This will also improve your overall health, which is another thing to feel good about. 

Keeping a consistent exercising routine will help improve your mental health and will, in turn, increase your capacity to juggle between your profession, family, social and all the important activities that make life worth living.

While this benefit is quite obvious, many people do not have the discipline to carry it through for a consistent period of time.  Statistics made available by the World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that people suffering from mental problems such as depression, amounts to about 300 million.

That is a huge and shocking number by all standards.

Fortunately, this is a problem that can easily be avoided if people took matters into their own hands. (http://www.who.int/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/depression)  By exercising, a person is able to improve his or her mood, reduce symptoms of stress, anger, and depression, and ease anxiety and reduce cognitive decline.

Endorphins are hormones in the body that help improve your mood when the body inactive. Exercises such as running, jogging or walking are a few routines that can help you increase your endorphins.  Another form of hormones that improve your mental alertness is neutrophils and monoamines. This is related to the white blood cells. The white blood cells improve on your immune system with assistance from the neutrophils and monoamines.

Mayfair, we care.

 

Making exercise a habit.



What happens when your alarm goes off in the morning and you have planned an early morning exercise session of power walking, jogging or cycling?

Do you hit the snooze button?

Or do you seize the day and look forward to your exercise?

Surprisingly as it may seem, many people will hit the snooze button and put the exercise session off until lunchtime. This is a pity because exercise before work can make you feel great, set you up for the day and refresh your mind.

And will it happen at lunchtime? Or will that important project be more important than your own well-being and health? On the majority of occasions the important project will win over an exercise session.

It seems that for many of us there is always something else that we could be doing instead of exercise. We could be sleeping! We could be working. We could be socialising. All these reasons are perfectly valid in our own minds but this is because we have not made exercise a priority.

If we turn this on its head, put our own health and well being first, and make exercise the priority, then exercise can become the excuse for not being able to have that extra hour in bed, not working that early morning session, and not having a drink with friends  then we will find this to be highly beneficial to our overall health and well-being.

It is said that by doing an activity on three consecutive occasions at the same time on three consecutive days this will create a neural groove within our brain. This neural groove will make the decision making process easier when the alarm wakes us up and the process of the habit will create ever more anchored neural grooves.  A daily routine will be established.

Please don’t forget however, that habits are easily broken. A holiday, working away from home, about of sickness, all these and more can break the good habits that you have acquired so it will take effort to recreate the habit when holidays and any break from a good routine are over.

And remember, Mayfair cares.

The Importance of Mental Health Awareness Day 10th October 2016

 


Mental health influences how we think, interact and behave.

 

Problems of mental health can affect anyone regardless of the age, social class or background. Research studies indicate that a mental health patient has an average life expectancy of 1 to 2 decades less when compared to those of sound mental health.

 

There is a significant link between mental health and physical health. This is because individuals with mental illness are highly likely to develop chronic illnesses and vice versa.

 

The importance of mental health awareness day on 10th October is to enable everyone to focus on mental health issues that are often ignored.

Statistics

Research statistics very but close to 50% of adults will experience mental health problems at one point or the other in their lives. 50% of such people experience symptoms that are moderate to severe in intensity.

 

4 of 10 major causes of disability among individuals aged 5 years or older are problems associated with mental health. Depression (a form of mental illness) is the main cause of disability.

 

More shocking is that only 20% of victims of mental illnesses access professional help. There is no doubt that a big improvement is needed to change the statistics. 

Importance of mental health awareness day in society

The importance of mental health awareness in society cannot be over emphasized.

 

What follows are some of the reasons why creating awareness of mental health in society is essential for individuals and their loved ones:

  • Mental health awareness in society helps to educate the public and therefore reduce stigma associated with it. This will serve to alter misconceptions related to mental illness. Destroying such barriers to support and social stigmas can go a long way in the mental illness awareness campaign. 
  • Creating awareness of mental health in society can assist individuals to recognize some mental illness warning signs. This can facilitate early or timely professional diagnosis and treatment of mental illness. Reaching for help early enough has been the pitfall for most mental illness cases. 
  • Such mental health awareness days serve to remind people of the reality of these illnesses and to emphasize that they require proper treatment. 
  • Awareness will help in reducing and eventually eliminating the cases of suicide instigated by mental illnesses. 
  • It helps end social exclusion experienced by mental health patients. This is very significant as over 70% of mental health victims conceal their illness to themselves. This happens because they fear being judged by peers and the society as a whole. 
  • It promotes better comprehension of issues that are related to mental illness in society.
  • It encourages the celebration of each and every individual’s unique worth in society and also encourages supporting victims of mental illness. 
  • It may assist in changing the mindset of insurance companies and policy makers to pay for the treatment required by mental illness patients. 

Conclusion

Mental health awareness day is a noble and global initiative by the World Federation for Mental Health that is aimed at promoting understanding of this illness. The importance of mental health awareness day on 10th October cannot be over emphasized. 

 

Remember, Mayfair cares.



Sources
https://www.cbhs.com.au/news/2014/11/24/raising-awareness-for-mental-health
ptsdtreatmenthelp.com/importance-mental-health-awareness-month/
www.healthplace.com/other-info/mental-health-newsletter/importance-of-mental-health-awareness-efforts/
www.merckmanuals.com/home/mental-health-disorders/overview-of-mental-health-care/mental-illness-in-society

5 ways of improving your fitness at any age


Let’s be honest, most of us would benefit if we knew how we could improve our fitness easily and inexpensively.

 

Think of the obvious benefits – a selection of which include:


  • Reducing the risk of type 2 diabetes
  • Reducing the risk of cancer
  • Reducing the risk of dementia
  • Reducing the risk of cardiovascular disease
  • Reducing stress
  • Reducing anxiety

According to the world health organisation we are a very sedentary society with 1 in 4 adults just not active enough.

 

So how can we improve our situation? What are the easy wins for us in terms of fitness?

 

Workout with a partner

 

According to a study of 1,813 adults, dogs are by far the best workout partners! In fact, dog owners were 77% more likely to have sufficient physical activity than their friends who do not own a dog.

 

If you are one of many who don't have a dog, do you have a friend who would be prepared to cycle with you on a regular basis or go for a brisk walk? These are the two easiest and least expensive methods of improving fitness.


Pedometers

 

Walking is an easy exercise option so track your steps with a pedometer or other fitness tracking device that records your progress. An app on your phone would be equally efficient.

 

Set yourself a daily target and monitor your progress in hitting your target. As soon as you are consistently reaching the target raise it to extend yourself a little more.

 

Intensity

 

Make your workout intense. Many people will argue that they do not have time to exercise promptly. This is just not true. 60 seconds of highly intense exercise within a 10 minute exercise session has been shown to be comparable with 45 minutes of gentler exercise.

 

Revisit your daily habits

 

Do you always take the lift in an office block?

Why not walk up the stairs from now on?

 

Do you always park as near as possible to the location you are visiting?

Why not park half a mile away and walk?

 

Do you always use your car for those short journeys to the shop?

Why not walk instead? It will do you good and also give you time to think and reflect and enjoy the surroundings.

 

Regularity

 

Make regular exercise a way of life not just a once a week token gesture. Once good habits are established they will become natural, so begin to replace those bad habits with good ones!!


We have discussed the importance of exercise to health and well-being here. Click on the link to remind yourself why you are doing it if paragraph 1 above isn’t enough!

 

Remember, Mayfair cares.

 

Inspired by the Olympics? A word of caution about over training


The achievements of the Olympians was fantastic wasn’t it? All over the world bikes, tennis rackets and golf clubs have been dusted off, weights unearthed from the loft, swimming trunks made to fit, trainers cleaned and all manner of sports clubs contacted.

However, a word of caution because as we hear about the dedication that takes an Olympic athlete to the pinnacle of achievement we have to recognise that they are a special breed of person and for the ordinary working man or woman too much exercise is a major example of having too much of a good thing.

There are two new studies that reveal the dangers of over exercising. The studies urge both casual and seasoned athletes to avoid over exercising because it has consequences. The first study reveals the biochemical responses that trigger muscle pain during workouts. The second discloses that young well paid and fit athletes who take part in special sports can acquire more injuries through over training than those less fortunate. The mantra of No pain No gain is a motivation for most athletes but it is dangerous if overdone.

It is hard to know whether you are exercising properly or if you are overdoing it because exercise is a culturally approved and socially adequate activity. Given this, it is important for athletes to know the red flags and warning signs of over-exercising. Below are signs and effects of overdone workouts.

· Extreme fatigue, weight loss, and muscle injuries.

· Muscle weakness.

· Heart palpitations.

· Insomnia, headaches, and loss of appetite or eating disorder.

· Menstrual irregularity in women and reduced testosterone in men.

· Overuse injuries and stress fractures which may be permanent or temporary.

· Over exercising can also lower immunity to non-stop illnesses or colds.

Working out for more than three times a week in durations of over 90 minutes per session is considered excessive exercising. Studies show that the body needs to relax after a day of intense exercises. The body’s immune system can suffer after a long exercise session. The white blood cell count reduces below the standard level unlocking chances of illnesses setting in.

When your body shows signs that it needs rest, do not ignore the signs. You should avoid working out when you are injured or sick. Take the day off for your body to heal if you are experiencing muscle injuries, fever or fatigue. A healthy body requires enough rest amidst workouts. It is recommended that you take at least two days off a week for your body to recover and heal properly.

Furthermore, ensure that you take in enough proteins, dietary fats, water and carbohydrates for adequate energy for your work outs. Appropriate hydration is vital when exercising. Dehydration causes nausea, headaches, muscle fatigue, overheating and it hinders your body’s ability to transport oxygen.

There are several ways of becoming fit without over exercising.

Firstly, you should consult with your doctor so that they can have you cleared for work out sessions. Then remember that moderation is extremely important when it comes to exercising.

Concentrate on maintaining a balance between your workout routine and other daily activities. Include some of the things you enjoy doing in your workout routine so that you are not stuck with one type of routine for a specific period of time daily.

These activities may include taking your dog for a walk, biking, kayaking, hiking, tennis golfing and dancing. Finally, keep in mind that a healthy exercise routine can only be achieved by caring about your body.

We hope that helps and remember, Mayfair Cares.

With acknowledgements to:

 www.huffingtonpost.com

www.healthline.com

www.eatingdisorder.org

www.bodyandsoulreconnection.com

9 Reasons why Exercise is important to Health & Wellbeing

Ever been told, “Use it or lose it”? Well, don’t ignore it. It applies equally to health and wellbeing but it doesn’t need to.

We often take our bodies for granted until a trip to the doctor presents news we do not want to hear.  

Simply put if you don’t use and look after your body, you will end up losing it for sure. Your lungs and your heart will run the risk of not functioning effectively and efficiently after a while; your muscles will turn into fat and become weak; your joints will become extremely stiff and prone to injury. 

You are probably thinking to yourself that you have heard this many times before, but did you take any notice? This isn’t people with a vested interest who are scaremongering, and exercise is not just about losing weight or building muscles, it is far more important than that.

Consider these benefits to regular exercise: 

1.      It helps you to improve your memory 

If you have ever had a work out session you will find that you can think more clearly after it is done. Your brain is not only getting more oxygen, but many studies have shown that exercise actually boosts your memory and helps you to learn far better. 

2.      It helps to improve your posture  

As you get older and age specific degenerative diseases like osteoporosis set in your posture will begin to suffer and common back ailments may set in. Then and now, good posture is extremely important, and one of the best ways to ensure you have this is to exercise the muscles that support your spine-from the abs to all the other muscle groups along your spine. 

3. It energises you 

As counter-intuitive as it might sound, regular exercise actually energises you throughout your day. In fact, following The Mayo Clinic studies, one of their books, Mayo Clinic Fitness for Everybody, stated that a lunchtime workout does leave you feeling more energetic and productive for the rest of the day.

Not everybody can do a workout, so if you are one of those who can’t, try making sure you get some fresh air and a walk during your lunch break. 

4. It will improve your self-confidence

Exercise improves and maintains your appearance which, as superficial as it might sound, makes you feel better about yourself. Even if the results cannot be immediately seen in the body, they will be apparent in your attitude while it also increases your self-confidence in social situations.


5. It helps you to De-Stress 

Stress is as certain as tax, whether you are the sensible type or not life will throw situations at you. This in turn can take its toll on the mind, but exercise combats this. Exercise releases the natural mood regulators endorphins, putting your body and mind in a better position and giving you a safe stress outlet valve.

6. It helps you sleep better 

The National Sleep Foundation in America has released the findings from several studies proving that exercising not only regulates sleep but helps you to sleep better. Be aware however, they have also found that the best times to do this are in the morning or mid-afternoon. This is because of the energising effect of exercise so doing this too close to your bedtime may have the opposite effect.

 7. It prevents you from getting sick too often 

A study in the British Journal of Sports Medicine concluded that people who exercise regularly tended to have milder symptoms when they were ill compared with those who didn’t exercise. 

8. Increases your life span

This one is a simple no brainer - regular exercise improves health which then prolongs your life expectancy. It is true that sitting all day will actually kill you.

 9. You will be happier

When you put all this together, it makes for a much happier you. It’s not simply about the runner’s high of a life filled with endorphin’s, it brings an all-rounded change to your life. You simply need to make it a habit. The University of Bristol found that on the days people exercised, their moods did in fact improve.

The body was not made to remain sedentary, and no good can come of keeping it so. Exercise is extremely important, so strap on those walking boots or jogging kit and go and pound some pavement!!

 

Sources of information provided in this Blog:

·         University of Bristol - The research, was published in the International Journal of Workplace Health Management December 2008

·         British Journal of Sports Medicine July 2011 http://bjsm.bmj.com/content/45/11/896.short

·         The National Sleep Foundation in America 2013 Sleep in America poll http://sleepfoundation.org/sleep-topics/exercise-and-sleep

·         Mayo Clinic April 2013 - http://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-living/fitness/basics/fitness-basics/hlv-20049447