Oh I’m soooo glad we’re back in Craiglockhart church hall again this week. Phew! You’ll know that if you were at our class last week in Waterside SC, then by the time the slimmers and the last of the leaders eventually left, it was 8.05/8/15pm! It was a joke (not very funny though). We did actually start our class while one of the slimmers was still being weighed (around 7.45pm when the class was supposed to finish at 7.30pm) and I’m sure that they weren’t very impressed with us exercising but well… (tbh).. too bad – we’d booked in well in advance. A few of you said that they were giving us ‘the look’ (aka daggers!) so it made it a different kind of exercise class/evening for all! Well, in case we can’t get the use of Craiglockhart church hall again, we’re NEVER going back to Waterside SC again!
I was told there would be no chairs on the floor (that they would all be away) and no way did I imagine that there would be tables all round the room – in fact, we had to move some out from the middle of the room! I said a few times when viewing the venue that I wanted nothing left ie no chairs, nothing, left, just a clear space but nope.
So anyway apologies for being helpful in clearing and being so patient and understanding.
In a recent Fitness Yoga class we did a seated spinal rotation stretch (which we often do in this and other classes) then went into a lean-back hamstring stretch (with one leg extended) while lifting the leg up and holding it either behind the hamstrings and/or calf or reaching and holding on to the foot, flexing the heel to get a lower calf stretch as well. We also had the option to reach the other arm out to the side.
As a ‘surprise’, we then progressed to extending both legs and arms while the body was in a V shape – as in a V sit up. So the last 2 leaning back exercises, really targeted our abdominal muscles as well as stretching out the legs and arms. We contracted our core abdominal muscles, lengthened our back and kept our shoulders down/relaxed and all while breathing and smiling! Let’s give it a try – again!
In last week’s newsletter, we talked about exercising together and our brains releasing endorphins which are chemicals that make us feel better and boosting our mood. Research suggests that regular exercise can also improve our sleep quality and memory so lots of reasons to exercise regularly.
Oh and if you were in last week’s Thursday 7pm or Friday 9.30am class/es, you’ll have noticed that I’ve started using a wireless microphone headset which I’ll continue to use so that you can hear me. Just that a few people have said they find it hard to hear me over the music so (with some help – thanks Bryce) I bought the headset mic and another speaker to amplify my voice. Mixed reviews from those 2 classes as some said they didn’t notice any difference, some asking ‘is it switched on’? while some others said they noticed a difference so I’ll persevere, maybe turn up the volume a bit and you can let me know what you think.
Following a healthy, balanced diet is associated with better brain health. We’re encouraged to eat at least 5 portions of fruit and veg a day (some say at least 10 portions) – they’re rich in antioxidants, fibre, vitamins and minerals. Mixing up your 5 or more portions of fruit & veg a day adds variety too so maybe not a great idea to eat the same fruit 5 times a day! Who’d want to eat say 5 bananas or potatoes a day? Hmm not me. We did talk about some of the benefits in bananas in last week’s newsletter but … variety is the spice of life so they say!
Did you know that
20 Jan is the start of Sugar Awareness Week in the UK? In the UK, it’s said that we get through over 1m tons of sugar a year which is, on average, over 15 tsps each a day. According to the World Health Organisation, they’d like us to aim for no more than 6 tsps a day. If we were to add say 2 tsps of sugar 3 times a day in our tea/coffee, it would equate to 4½k of fat which is over half a stone in weight – and that’s just in 1 year. High-sugar diets are the main cause obesity which can lead to chronic health problems ie heart disease, type 2 diabetes and other long term conditions.
If we want a sweet treat, we’re encouraged to opt for fresh fruit which is naturally sweet but also contains fibre, vitamins and minerals.
By the way, you may have already seen the BBC documentary The Truth About Sugar again, but if not, you can search it on Youtube – it’s worth the watch.
21 Jan is National Hug Day in the USA – we’re encouraged to hug everyone, no matter who they are: members of family, friends or strangers. Hugging has many benefits for our health. Different studies prove that hugging helps build a good immune system and decrease risk of heart disease, lower blood pressure and trigger the release of healthy hormones and make you feel more relaxed. When we hug someone we trust, our body released oxytocin which lowers cortisol levels so we feel less stressed. Anyone for a hug?
Burns night: Saturday 25 Jan – If you’re celebrating the life and poetry of Robert Burns with a wee dram, haggis, neeps & tatties and enjoying a ceilidh, have fun.
Take care and I look forward to seeing you and catching up with you this week
Contact me by email: firstname.lastname@example.org