Do you want to come through winter months fighting fit?
Follow this simple guide to looking after your health (and your clients’)!
1. Boost your diet
Eat your way to a strong immune system by ensuring your diet is rich in antioxidants, vitamin C, vitamin D and zinc.
Think colour and variety to give your body the vitamins and nutrients it needs!
- Broccoli – high in antioxidants.
- Carrots – full of the antioxidant beta carotene.
- Red pepper – massive hit of vitamin C.
- Kiwifruit/ Oranges – each fruit contains your entire daily requirement of vitamin
- Green tea – powerful antioxidant.
- Mushrooms – rich source of antioxidants.
- Seaweed – rich in zinc (add strips of kelp, nori, or akrame to soups, salads and stir-fries)
- Oysters – high in zinc and iodine
- Berries – packed with antioxidants and low in calories
2. Scrub up
Coughs and sneezes spread diseases so make sure you protect yourself and your clients by washing your hands and keeping any exercise equipment clean. Experts recommend soaping hands together for at least 30 seconds before rinsing under running water for effective cleansing.
3. Look after your voice
Teaching classes, training sessions or fighting to make yourself heard over a noisy gym floor can play havoc with your vocal cords, particularly in cold weather. Sip soothing drinks like lemon and honey or try a natural throat remedy that contains an anti-inflammatory like Vocalzone which contains Myrrh (how seasonal!). Vocalzone works by reducing swelling in the throat, fighting infections and is a firm favourite of singers including Tom Jones and Katherine Jenkins. If it’s good enough for them…!
4. Keep hydrated
It’s easy to chug down litres of water when the weather’s hot but it’s just as important to drink lots during colder weather – particularly if you spend a lot of time in centrally-heated buildings. Try herbal brews like green tea to refresh and revive or even hot water with mint or lemon to maintain your fluid intake.
5. Take the seasonal spirit easy!
While there’s nothing wrong with a seasonal tipple, alcohol;
- Can weaken your immune system
- Stays in the body for longer than most people realise (on average it takes one hour for the body to break down one unit of alcohol)
- Is also packed with calories
6. Get outside
It might be cold outside but exercising in the great outdoors is fantastic for the mind and the body. As well as helping to blow the cobwebs away, exercising outside can provide a much-needed dose of natural light and vitamin D during the winter months, helping to keep Seasonal Affective Disorder away while keeping your immune system strong.
7. Dress right
Make the most of modern technology by wearing clothes that help maintain constant body temperatures, while keeping perspiration at bay. Layer up, wear a hat and gloves (during cold weather blood flow is concentrated to the body’s core leaving your extremities vulnerable) and make sure your trainers are designed to cope with wet or icy conditions.
8. Get yourself an MOT
When was the last time you took some of the advice you give your clients and assessed your exercise regime? Are you setting yourself new goals? Are you using good techniques or is the way you move more habitual than mindful?
Take the time to re-assess the way you exercise and set yourself the kind of challenges you give your clients. And don’t forget as a REPs member you qualify for special discounts from BUPA for a comprehensive health check too to make sure everything’s tickety-boo.
9. Sleep well
A lack of sleep can compromise your immune system so make sure you get enough shut-eye. Sleep experts also recommend having a soothing bedtime routine and trying to go to bed at the same time each night to get the optimum sleep.