3 Tricks To Walk More

The third day of the Wellbeing Challenge on Instagram is dedicated to… walking everywhere!

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✨10-Day Wellbeing Challenge✨ Day 3: Walk Everywhere 👟 Walking everywhere is the easiest way to be active and burn a few calories. Whenever you can, choose to walk instead of using your car or any other means of transport. It will boost your cardiovascular system and give you the feeling of being lighter. I also recommend to go for a walk after having a meal, because it helps digestion and blood sugar regulation too 👣 Download the Wellbeing Workbook at any time for free to do all the practical exercises of this challenge – #LinkInBio @thewellbeingblogger – you’re still on time to join♥️ . . #wellbeing #10daysofwellbeing #thewellbeingchallenge #thewellbeingblogger #wellness #wellbeingblogger #wellnessblogger #health #healthylifestyle #walking #healthtips #coaching #wellbeingcoach #stayactive #fitness #fitfam #instablogger #instalifestyle #lifestyleblogger

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When I started my weight loss journey at the age of 15 (I think I haven’t shared the story here yet, but I was a morbid obese teen back then – and yes, I’m not kidding), the very first thing I started doing was to walk at least 60 minutes every day. That was the only thing my body could handle at that time and with a simple daily walk I immediately dropped a few pounds and inches even long before I started to follow a balanced meal plan.

At that time, it worked and it made wonders for me because I transformed walking into a ritual. There were no excuses. It could be sunny or raining, it didn’t really matter: I would be there walking those damn 60 minutes. When you have reduced mobility because you are too heavy (like I am now, but more about that after we finish the challenge), walking is probably the safest kind of exercise you can do. Combined with a few minutes of stretching, you will soon notice the difference. That’s why I highly recommend everyone to start walking first, even before any further changes to diet and physical activity.

I do know however that walking can become boring after a while. I especially recognise that right now because I moved back to Canterbury and I already know this city like the back of my hands… there are, nonetheless, a few tricks to reset our mood and motivation to walk. In this post I will share 3 of my favourite tricks to walk more.

 

1. Practise Mindfulness While Walking

Walking the same streets, alleys and paths, all the time becomes boring, right? Lack of novelty can crush our motivation to walk. One way to avoid this is to practise mindfulness while walking. This means that when you go for a walk, you will do your best to pay attention to your surroundings and to what is going on inside of yourself. Mindful walking is a good exercise not only to develop your attention skills but also to discover new details and ideas that make walking fun and which otherwise you would miss. Most of the time we walk in a very mindless way and we often miss small and big treasures on our way. I will give you one personal example: I passed by a certain tree at least three times this week and I had never noticed there was a carved figure inside the tree until today. You would say it was rather easy to spot such a beautiful detail but I have been walking so mindlessly that only today, when I finally paid attention, I then noticed the beautiful work you can see in the picture below:

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Captured in Canterbury, UK

 

2. Wear Comfortable Shoes

There is nothing worse than walking in uncomfortable shoes – well maybe there are other similar or equally uncomfortable things but you get what I mean. You may not even notice it – I sometimes don’t – but finishing a walk and having foot pain is another motivation killer. Who wants to suffer, right? Make sure you invest in a pair of sneakers or shoes that are comfortable to your feet. They don’t have to be expensive, they just need to be the right fit for your feet. Believe it or not, there are many different models and kinds of sneakers. Some pairs are more suitable for running, while others are more suitable for walking. Even within each category you will find different models according to the type of path you will be walking on. Ok, I didn’t want you to panic or make your life more difficult: next time you decide to buy a pair of walking shoes, just ask for help in the store, explain them what’s your walking goal, and they will show you the best options.

3.  Walk and Help Helping Others

There is one app called Charity Miles, which I shared here in the blog around this same time last year. This is one of the many beautiful ways how technology can improve our lifestyle and make a difference in the world at the same time. Charity Miles is an app that counts the amount of miles you make and then transforms it into a monetary contribution to an organisation of your choice. Last year I was walking to support Operation Smile. You can read more about it here. I’m thinking of getting back to it as a way to motivate myself to go out more and walk – might even try to challenge a friend to come with me and even consider using it to plan a more lengthy walking adventure in the future.

What’s your favourite way to motivate yourself to walk? Let us know in the comments box. 😉

 

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If you are interested in the 10-day Wellbeing Challenge on Instagram, you can still join in and download my Wellbeing workbook for free.

The Over Training Syndrome – What Is It & What To Do About It?

SpecialBlog Guest

“Did you work out today?” or ‘’what is your favorite exercise?”
Basically, one word that I have been repeating for the last couple of years is, “exercise.”

But what good has happened, when the only thing I hold dear, failed me? Yes, you’re reading it right. For some time, I had to quit working out because of over training, also known as “Over training Syndrome”. My goals were so big; I forgot to give the much-deserved rest to my body.

From the last couple of years, I have been training my body, making it go through rigorous situations. Recently, I realized that even my body needed some rest due to over training.

What is Over training Syndrome?

Over training syndrome frequently occurs in athletes who are training constantly and doing so, beyond the body’s ability to recover. Athletes often exercise longer and harder so they can improve. But without adequate rest and recovery, these training regimens can backfire and actually hamper performance.

Symptoms of Over training Syndrome:

  • Washed-out feeling, lack of energy and drained feeling
  • Muscle soreness, general aches
  • Insomnia, Headaches
  • Sudden drop in performance and many more

Reasons why I couldn’t muster enough strength to go back to the gym:

  • My conscious mind convinced me that one more day wouldn’t hurt much
  • Started crawling into my comfort zone of not working out
  • Started losing my strength and endurance
  • Lack of motivation, moodiness and irritability

And yes, don’t forget to take it easy. Start with the basics. The last thing you want is to walk into the gym after a month and while trying to squat your “usual” load, and throw out your back. (Hello, another month off!)

Preventive measures you can take to avoid over training syndrome:

  • Rest and recover – Let your muscles relax for a week or so and then get back to your regular routine. Trust me a person can regain the lost muscle much more quickly after an extended layoff
  • Drink plenty of water – Your muscles are fatigue because of the dehydration. So, drink plenty of fluids and alter your diet plans if necessary
  • Heated massage – Yes go for it as it can loosen out your tight muscles increase blood flow and rid the body of built – up lactic acid and other toxins
  • Eat enough calories- It is important to match or consume a surplus of calories expenditure for the day.

Remember your goals and work accordingly because smart training is the path to faster times and good health. Hustle up.

FITNESS-FRIDAY: Posture makes muscles prosper

SpecialBlog Guest

A few days ago, while doing my resistance training, I came across this dedicated dude. He was trying to make the most out of his workouts and putting in every bit of strength left in him to achieve what he desires. After observing him for a good week, I saw something which I couldn’t ignore. So, I went up to him and suggested – your posture and breathing technique is not good and it could lead to injuries.

During exercise, proper posture and breathing may sound like simple things to remember. But often, injuries like muscle strains and off balance can occur when you fail to maintain good posture or inadvertently hold your breath during exertion. It is very important to maintain a good breathing cycle and a proper posture to attain the maximum benefit out of your workout.

Good posture supports the body to function effectively and will minimize muscle strain and injury. During exercise, whether you are sitting or standing, your body will potentially be in several different positions. If you add weights, such as dumbbells used for strength training, or increase your exercise intensity to an energetic level remember to maintain proper form and posture. If you are negligent on your posture or form, you can easily sustain an injury and be sidelined. Take time to learn proper body alignment and be mindful about how your body is feeling. Pain could be a warning of incorrect form or posture.

While doing resistance training, it is very important to maintain your breathing cycle. Holding your breath during a workout can have significant consequences. Breathing provides you that extra energy or oxygen to your body to perform that vital exercise or repetition of squats or deadlifts. When you minimize the number of breathes you take you are unknowingly reducing the oxygen supply into your body and that can result into depletion of your ability to be efficient. Unconsciously holding your breath can be due to the level of concentration needed when learning a new task or technique. Understand that deep consistent breathing helps to provide your body the oxygen it craves. Be aware of your breathing, notice if you are prone to holding your breath and try to make necessary adjustments to lift that extra rep.

Developing and maintaining optimal posture and proper exercise mechanics is of utmost importance to ensure health, safety and fitness. Working out with any dysfunction in your body can lead to pain, frustration, injuries, and inefficient use of energy for fitness training. Posture defines our performance in any activity we perform on daily basis. Whether it’s running, walking or sitting, it’s very important to maintain a good posture. Good stance will reduce the wear and tear of joints resulting into no joint pain or other conditions. It also minimizes the stress on ligaments which reduces the probability of injury.

While doing any resistance training, keep these vital points in mind regarding correct posture:

  • Keep your neck in line with your spine
  • Keep your back straight
  • Keep your knees relaxed and don not lock them
  • Keep your shoulders back, relaxed and down.

So, irrespective of whether you are an avid fitness enthusiast or just getting started with your fitness journey, don’t forget to maintain a proper posture and breathing cycle to maximize the results and also to prevent yourself from any injuries.

 

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How To Reconnect With Your Life Purpose

If you are already in my e-mail list, you may know by now that I have been through a great process of change and heading to different decisions in life. I am writing a new book at the moment, in which I share my story around burnout and how these last three years made me realise that it’s about time for me to spread my wings and fly towards happiness. I mean true happiness. So I am truly committed to change the direction of my career and leave academia for a while to pursue something that feeds my soul in a deeper way.

And one of the things that helped me to embark on this journey of reconnection with what many call “life purpose” was to go back in time, literally; I asked myself what were my dreams when I was a kid and I let myself be immersed in memories of my childhood. I went back as further as the age 5 or 6, an age in which I would tell people that I wanted to be a teacher.

At the age of 14, I then had the wish of becoming a journalist who is always travelling and reporting from remote places around the world. At the age 17, I wanted to become a nutritionist. At the age of 25, I became someone who had a master’s degree in Psychology but who couldn’t really be a psychologist. And at the age of 29, I am now a professional coach, who is focused on working side by side with inspiring people and help them open even more roads, doors or even windows so they can shine even brighter.

When I look at life through the eyes of the 5 year old child that is inside me, I know what my life purpose is

Looking back, I just have to say that life happens and what goes around comes around. I didn’t trained to be a teacher, but I became one. I didn’t trained to be a journalist, but I keep writing and extending my soul through my fingers. I spent three years depressed for being able to enrol in a nutrition course, but I have now three degrees in Psychology and I know more about how food impacts our minds, souls and bodies than many nutrition students that I have met in this journey. I am not also legally qualified to be a psychologist, because I refuse to be part of an organisation which makes me trade money for acting within my own profession, but I studied social norms and groups so much that I am comfortable to step aside from all the status and prestige that one can have from being a Doctor.

And when I look at life through the eyes of the 5 year old child that is inside me, I know what my life purpose is. My life purpose is not being a doctor, a psychologist, or a nutritionist. When I look back to all the dreams I had, they were all about improving myself and helping others change towards their best selves. So when I am 5 years old again, I’m in that exact moment in time that separates me from living a sad life or live the life that I came to live.

And how did I arrive into this moment? I travelled in time and I recalled every dream that I forced myself to let go because there were always far more people to stop me than to encourage me. I grew up, I screwed up, I got lost, but I have never stopped being to others the type of person that I needed when I was just 5 years old. Today I am not just being that person to others. I am being who I am at my very best for myself and that’s why I am sailing away and embracing the beautiful unknown gift of life. Once more.