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Want good wellness results?

...8 factors to focus on

Sunday, August 25, 2019

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YOUR 'wellness probabilities' are the only real measure of how your wellness efforts will pay off. But before you can fully appreciate this reality, you must understand what probability is.

Think of probability as a measurement of how likely an event is to occur. If you never go to the south pole, are you likely to get mauled by a polar bear? No, but is it possible? Sure.

To be more specific, if you never drink alcohol, it is highly improbable that you will suffer from alcoholic fatty liver; but if you have excessive sugar in your diet, you are likely to suffer from a non-alcoholic fatty liver.

It is well established that a moderate calorie diet of clean, low-fat, non-processed, low red meat proteins, half of your intake from green leafy and other mixed colour vegetables, low glycemic index complex carbs, high fibre, healthy fats, and probiotic foods will keep you nutritionally healthy. However, your physical activity is also massively important in maintaining good wellness probabilities.

Sadly, there are many people who believe that one exercise or another, or worse, a generally active work lifestyle is sufficient for positive wellness probabilities, but unfortunately, they could not be more wrong.

Over the years, I have been able to successfully predict the wellness issues of various individuals simply by observing their continued choices. Below is a list of my top eight factors which will affect your wellness outcomes.

1. Walking

There is a basic principle of training, if you want to be good at a thing, practise the thing. So, if you want to be a great cyclist, spend time cycling and not only doing lunges all day.

If you intend to be ambulatory for a lifetime, dedicate time to walking, purposefully, with a full stride.

Walking:

• Helps you maintain your hip joints;

• Helps to align your vertebrae;

• Fights back pains;

• Acts as a low impact workout;

• Lowers your risk of heart disease.

2. Weights

Progressive weight resistance training is very polarising. Some people swear by it and won't live without it; others consider it the most boring, pointless thing in the world to do.

The reality is, proper range of motion progressive resistance exercises with muscle loading will:

• Maintain much of the muscle mass you will lose otherwise;

• Build and maintain muscle needed for increasing your fat-burning capabilities and weight maintenance;

• Keep you strong;

• Help you keep your stability and balance;

• Stabilise your joints, avoiding joint pains, including back pains;

• Keep you mobile and independent;

• Strengthen your heart and lungs;

• Increase your resistance to falls and illnesses;

• Maintain and improve your bone strength and resistance to breaking.

3. Cardiovascular exercises

Cardiovascular, aerobic, cross fit, aqua fit, dance fit, Zumba, spinning, and similar exercises are probably the most well-known forms of exercises.

They are easily marketed classes, with larger numbers per instructor, fewer equipment per person, can be designed to be delivered by multimedia, and are activities which can be packaged in a fun way to keep moving.

These are all wonderful in my book, because many people who take part in these activities would not otherwise be doing anything. And, regardless of the theme of this article, something is better than nothing.

Many cardio activities have become quite creative by including calisthenics (body weight resistance exercises), various forms of weights and resistance equipment. Overall, cardiovascular exercises:

• Raise your heart rate and heart health;

• Increase your heart's efficiency, its ability to do more work with less effort;

• Boosts your overall mood;

• Reduces stress;

• Improve lung capacity;

• Improves recovery time;

• Improves immunity.

4. Flexibility

Stretching muscles, connective tissues and joints are often overlooked. This can be a grave error, as stretching done properly:

• Maintains range of motion;

•Improves balance and agility;

• Reduces the risk of pains;

• Reduces imbalances caused by the shortening of tissues;

• Minimises the risks in injuries and strains;

• Helps to maintain alignment and posture;

• Assists with maintaining strength and effective performance in everyday life.

5. Agility, coordination and balance

If you are a dancer, play a racket sport, do martial arts or some similar activity, you probable have agility coordination and balance covered.

Many other physical activities tend not to be so multi-planar; keeping you in a rigid position or moving along one or two lines of movement/balance. Agility and coordination training is usually reserved for improving athletic performance in sports, but the importance of: Shifting and maintaining balance; recovering balance, not 'tying up' your feet, or tripping yourself, and adjusting your pace and speeds to move safely in our three-dimensional reality, are all of lifelong relevance.

6. Lifestyle

Ergonomic awareness: As you go about your daily life, be aware of your work, play and rest spaces, your posture while sitting, standing and lying down.

Your every posture can help you avoid agony or alleviate current issues. It may take a trained eye to assist you, if you are currently in pain, but it is worth the effort.

7. Professional help, physician or coach

Your regular doctor's visit is key to avoidance and the all important early detection of any issue you may encounter.

Working with a system or a wellness coach with the experience and knowledge to help you avoid negative wellness probabilities, is often underrated but invaluable. You may miss important issues, overdo some activities and underdo others — balance, rest, intensity, and consistency are everything.

8. Do things with people

We are in all ways social creatures, even the most antisocial among us. Having a training partner, friend, family member — anyone who is a part of your healthy lifestyle activities and goals — will greatly improve your chances of success.

If you are diligent with walking but not weights, you will walk until your joints destabilise. If you lift weights but don't stretch, you will be strong until you have a strain or fall.

Your positive wellness probabilities depend on you maintaining and balancing all of the activities listed above, without exception. There is always time and not much is more important than a trained professional who can help you schedule it all.

Fitz-George Rattray is the director of Intekai Academy, which is focused on helping people live a healthy lifestyle through nutrition and weight management. If you are interested in losing weight or living a healthier lifestyle, give them a call at 876-863-5923, or visit their website at intekaiacademy.org.


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