Nour­ish­ing bone broth to sup­port joint & gut health.

Sunday Mail - Body and Soul - - FRONT PAGE -

De­pend­ing on your out­look, pound­ing it out on the tread­mill can make you feel as if you’re fly­ing – or seem a bit fu­tile. What­ever you’re do­ing, if you’re not en­joy­ing your­self, it might be time to try some­thing new to catch that high.

“Find­ing an ex­er­cise that works for you is im­por­tant, whether it’s low- or high-im­pact classes or a com­bi­na­tion of both,” Eék ex­plains. “Some peo­ple pre­fer to get me-time while ex­er­cis­ing, be­cause do­ing things alone al­lows for re­flec­tion and there’s no di­rect so­cial pres­sure. For oth­ers, ex­er­cis­ing by them­selves can make them feel lonely. It’s eas­ier to feel mo­ti­vated when other peo­ple are in­volved, and they can pro­vide mo­ti­va­tion.”

And re­search from Santa Clara Univer­sity in the US shows that be­ing healthy is catch­ing – other peo­ple’s be­hav­iour rubs off on us, mak­ing work­ing out to­gether a great op­tion.

“I’d ad­vise try­ing dif­fer­ent work­outs to find out what suits you best,” Eék says. “It might even dif­fer from week to week.” Even­tu­ally, you should find out what gives you the best ex­er­cise buzz. There re­ally is some­thing out there for ev­ery­one. If you feel great about your body, wear­ing Ly­cra in a room lined with mir­rors isn’t a prob­lem – but if you’re quite self­con­scious, it can be a night­mare. Re­search from Mar­quette Univer­sity in Canada has re­vealed that con­cerns about body im­age can stop us want­ing to work out, and if you feel in­se­cure about your body, an hour sur­rounded by those who are fur­ther along in their fit­ness jour­ney can be in­tim­i­dat­ing.

“All of us feel un­happy with the way we look at some point, and th­ese thoughts are nor­mal when they’re only fleet­ing, and they can be worked on,” Eék says. “But if they’re un­con­trol­lable, you could have body dys­mor­phic dis­or­der ( BDD), which pre­vents you from see­ing your­self as you are.

“A BDD di­ag­no­sis can be treated with cog­ni­tive be­havioural ther­apy, dur­ing which a ther­a­pist can in­tro­duce you to cop­ing tech­niques and meth­ods.”

“Make a rule to not check the mir­ror more than three times while at the gym, and don’t step on the scales more than once a week,” Eék ad­vises. And if you sus­pect you may be suf­fer­ing from BDD, see your doc­tor right away. Ex­er­cise has been proven to re­lieve stress and im­prove mood, but too many wor­ries can be over­whelm­ing – no mat­ter what work­out you’re do­ing.

“If you no­tice that ex­er­cis­ing isn’t help­ing you and you sus­pect your bad mood is due to fac­tors other than ex­er­cise, I’d ad­vise you to seek pro­fes­sional help,” Eék says. “It’s al­ways bet­ter to be proac­tive than re­ac­tive and seek help in time.”

If you’re gen­er­ally stressed or anx­ious and neg­a­tive thoughts are in­trud­ing even dur­ing a work­out, it’s worth pay­ing your doc­tor a visit to work out what’s go­ing on.

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