The Actual Blog:
I F - Intermittent fasting:
I’ve read about it but never really had a go! Once again though it makes sense when you look in to it, the way the body reacts in different ways after eating and all dependant on time after. The trouble is that we have learnt to eat our ‘main meals, and then we ‘snack’, and gradually over the years the main meal has gotten later and later in the day. So my next ‘trial’ in to the land of a healthy lifestyle is IF - and started yesterday evening by having my last meal before 6:30pm and apart from drinks, unsweetened of course, nothing until 10:30am this morning when I had a coffee - so 16 hours!! The first food was 12:30 which was salmon, green pepper, rye crackers (3), boiled egg, cheese, sweet pickle, avocado (although not quite ripe enough), tomatoes - healthy or what!!! My next meal will be before 6:30pm again.
Updates to follow:
Doing my own research
Since I started my journey, I’ve done my own research - and it’s surprising what I’ve learnt. I’ve bought and read countless books, both on the kindle and sometimes ‘real’ books. Some of them have been really good whilst some perhaps not so, but invariably I’ve got something out of all of them.
It’s got me thinking and wondering why many more people around me won’t do their own research, rather just listening to the current narrative or at the very least the ‘old research’. Very often, idea’s about health that appeared in the 80’s and 90’s are still being used today because people haven’t looked into the newer research. As an example the idea that diabetes was a result of too much sugar, which of course it is, but we now know that much of it is also by eating too many ‘simple’ carbs that turn straight in to sugar - and not just actual refined sugar. (Of course the ‘added sugar’ that is found in most of our food has a major part to play). And the same with the ‘overweight epidemic’ and the resulting ‘low fat’ diets - when of course we now know that some ‘fats’ are vital for our health.
Three meals a day, breakfast/lunch/dinner, with snacks throughout - has been the norm for a long while - along with TV dinners, ‘ready meals’, ‘takeaway’s’ etc, the result being now that the UK is the ‘fattest’ and corresponding unhealthiest country in Europe! Not a nice accolade. The science now is suggesting that maybe ‘one meal a day’, (OMAD), or at the most two is the healthier way - and in a window of 12 hours max, (preferably 8-10), so that our bodies get 12 hours min of fasting - food for thought! (No pun intended).
Functional Medicine is the relatively new way of dealing with some of the many conditions we see as ‘normal’ in today’s world, conditions such as the aforementioned overweight, autoimmune conditions, etc. Functional medicine deals with these by changing our lifestyles in both our eating and exercise in small manageable ways that really do work - way better than ‘popping a pill or two’ which seems to be the go to. (Who wants to take a chemical to do what a healthy lifestyle can do?? - not me for one).
The first books to go to for me on this subject are the one’s by Dr. Rangan Chatterjee who is a MD practicing in Manchester, UK.
So - doing my own research has taught me a lot - why can’t I get others to do it!
OK! So where did all that time go???
So it’s now October and the last months have shot by. The silliness is still going on within regards to the ‘virus’ but it doesn’t matter what you think about it all - eventually we will get through it. What is important is that we need to make sure as far as possible that we come out of it fighting fit both physically and mentally - and we can only rely on ourselves to do that.
So get moving, get reading, and stop listening to the doom and gloom on the TV.
If you do your own research you can then make up your own mind on whatever you’ve read etc. Some of it you may not agree with, (maybe a lot of it), but there will be something that resonates with you and maybe change your outlook.
I’m going to list books I’ve read, articles I’ve read, podcasts I’ve listened to, etc - some Ive liked and agree with, and some I’m not too sure about.
And just maybe I’ll update this blog more often :)
30/30 Squat Challenge - oops!
Ok so I got about 12 days in and completed the 30 mins, but I must admit the next 10 days were very poor ...... and then it stopped completely....... so I failed through lack of sticking at it. But there is always another time :)
30/30 squat challenge Day 3 & 4
I thought maybe a daily update could get a bit boring so I’m going to update every few days.
So yesterday, (day 3), I started at 8:15 and finished at 15:15 - every squat lasting 3 mins. Today, (day 4), there were a few interruptions so I started at 8:20 and finished at 22:20 - however I managed 2 x 4min squats and finished with a 5min squat - ouch!
30/30 squat Challenge - Day 2
30/30 squat challenge - Day 1
So I decided to try this challenge:
30 mins per day in total of a sustained deep squat, (the natural resting position seen often in many parts of the world), for 30 days. I don’t know what the outcome will be for a 61 year old but I’m going to find out!
Anyway today was day 1, I started at 8:00am and finished about 8:30pm. Most of my squats lasted for 2 minutes but I did do a 3 minute squat and two 2min 30sec squats. Hopefully as time goes on I will be able to sustain them for longer. I must admit it was harder than I first thought it would be but I do feel a sense of achievement after the first day.
So today I’m going to concentrate on stress!
We’re told time and time again that stress is the biggest, (or one of the biggest), reasons for chronic illness, weight gain, early death, etc. A member of my family died at a relatively young age of 61 from his 3rd heart attack, having had his first at 48. So just maybe, due to the fact that you learn from your parents, I am programmed to ‘stress’ in the same way! (I will say that I don’t believe that just because my father had a heart condition then I will automatically follow suit).
So with this in mind I have decided today to list what is ‘winding me up’, ‘how I’m reacting’, ‘how often’, etc etc.
No.1 - I literally woke up thinking about the family and friends that hadn’t responded to a group chat (about good health and connected Issues) how I wanted them to! And to be honest I kept playing it though my mind, then sent a ‘last try’ text - derrrrrrrr! Why did that make me ‘slightly wound up?’
Then I wrote up to here!
More to follow, keep coming back! The Tab will say time last updated.
It’s too easy to not do much!
It would be so easy to not do a lot whilst on ‘lockdown’! I mean we don’t have to worry about getting up ‘that’ early do we, nor do we need to bother too much how we look - who’s going to see?
Sitting down too long and even more than normal is very easy to do and actually takes thought to not do it, but even then I know I fail. So maybe if I ‘blog’ about my day then it’ll not only prompt me but anyone reading this.
So today is Monday 20th April 2020, week 4 of the lockdown, and as I write this it’s 10:45 - I’ve done my online Hiit session for today which as usual was tough and now my wife is doing her online Pilates session. (I highly recommend these - they are very good and you keep contact and healthy with like minded people). Now I could be sat down, and indeed I have been doing so, but today I’m not - this is being typed standing up in the kitchen - so even if I say so myself, not a bad start to the week.
I’m currently sat on the floor typing this! OTT? Maybe, maybe not! There is a direct link to longevity and the ability to get up and down without using your hands - being able to do that also from the floor can only improve on flexibility, something we have lost through ‘modern living’.
Dog’s had a walk of just under 2 miles around midday, so as I write I have done 9,000 steps so far in total - another dog walk yet to go today.
Ok so getting closer to the end of the day and slowing down. Currently sat in my music room writing this.
Did take the dog’s out for another walk at about 18:45 for just 20 mins, it means I’ve done nearly 13,000 steps today. Prior to the walk I also spent nearly 2 hours standing in my hall whilst my plumber friend repaired our boiler, (although I did sit on the stairs a couple of times).
Not a bad day I don’t think today, stress was minimal which is good.
More to follow, keep coming back! The Tab will say time last updated.
Keeping fit and healthy during ‘lockdown’
Coronavirus and my blog
Learning to walk ....... again!
I’m breathing wrong! ........... But it’s natural isn’t it?
So I’ve read even more of Patrick McKeown’s book ‘The Oxygen Advantage”, and it’s really interesting. One particular title that spoke to me: ‘Noses are for breathing, mouths are for eating’ - It talks about how many of us become habitual mouth breathers and what effect this has on the CO2 balance in our system that ultimately effects how much oxygen is actually taken up by our body - all highly technical but equally as interesting.
Anyway have you actually tried to breathe just through your nose? All day and all night? (All night is even harder - and if you wake up with a dry mouth then you haven’t managed it!). You can see the benefit because through your nose uses the diaphragm, and should be almost silent. (Through your mouth uses the chest). It’s also the most relaxed way and reduces the stress level, rather than invoking the ‘fight or flight’ reaction - which increases the stress level.
The Tarahumara tribe can run for hours and hours chasing down game, (Born to run - Christopher McDougal), and they always breathe through their noses! So it is saying that even when exerting, (ie the gym etc), we should still breathe through our noses, calmly, keeping the CO2 levels correct so as to allow maximum uptake of oxygen - as breathing too much actually decreases the CO2 level below what it should be, meaning not enough oxygen is taken up and leading to exhaustion and even more lactic acid production. All highly technical but worth looking in to I think.
Ok so surely breathing is natural.
Some time before I started at the gym I was having palpitations. At the same time I was getting moaned at every night for snoring, and I must admit I think I had sleep apnea as I would occasionally wake up suddenly with an almighty ‘thump’ in my chest - and it wasn’t my wife getting annoyed!
I knew I wasn’t feeling great on a regular basis but came to the realisation that on band rehearsal night, (I play tenor sax in a big band), I would go feeling iffy but return home feeling fine - playing sax in a big band requires long breathes.
I have this habit of whistling constantly but by both blowing and sucking, exhaling and inhaling, and this has the effect of short breathing. My visit to the doctors for palpitations resulted in a high BP and the need to return for an ECG. In the week between I made sure I did some relaxed breathing exercises and do you know what? My BP lowered and the ECG was fine - so I wasn’t breathing properly.
The latest Dr Rangan Chatterjee Feel Better Live More podcast #99 with Patrick McKeown talks about breathing and how most of us have got it wrong. His book The Oxygen Advantage is my latest addition from Kindle.
So I’ve had to relearn how to walk at 60 and now how to breathe!!