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Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Follow these 10 exercises to kickstart your day

To stay physically fit, energetic, alert and to retain your vigour, efficient use of your time and a little creativity in planning your exercises are all that is required. You do not need to join a gym or buy expensive fancy equipments to work out. Listed below are a few simple and efficient workouts.......

Exercise Routine: The following exercises are recommended to be done under supervision if you are new to exercises.

1. Begin your exercise routine with a suitable warm up and flexibility exercises like spot jogging, jumping jacks, calf stretches, hamstring, neck rotations, toe touches and side stretches. These warm ups are important to help prevent risk of sprains and injuries to the knee, spine, hips etc.

2. Do 5 to 8 rounds of surya namaskars which is a complete body work out that promotes weight loss, stamina, metabolism and flexibility.

3. Squats: Stand erect with your feet apart. Slowly lower the body and squat down as far down as possible. Remember to keep your knees in line with the toes. Return to stand position and repeat for 2 sets of 15 reps each.

4. Lunges: Stand straight and move one leg forward and kneel on the back leg. Straighten, come back to normal position and repeat on the other leg. Do 2 sets of 15 reps.

5. Side Leg Kicks: Standing erect raise the right leg sideways as high as possible. Pause, lower and repeat for 15 to 20 counts. Then repeat on the other leg. This can be done front ways as well.

6. Abdominal Crunches: Lie flat on the back with knees bent. Keep feet flat on the floor. With hands clasped behind the neck, tighten your stomach and slowly bring the torso up. Hold this position for a few seconds, lower slowly and repeat for 12 to 15 reps of 2 sets.

7. Lying down cycling: Lie with back to the floor, hands parallel to the body. Gradually raise both legs, bend your knees and begin to cycle by bringing your knees to the chest alternately like pedaling a bicycle. Keep stomach muscles tight. Do 25 to 30 counts of two sets.

8. Oblique Curl: Lie face up on the floor with hands behind your head. Bring the knees up with heels close to the butt. Curl the torso up, twist to one side by bringing the right elbow to the left knee and repeat on the other side. Repeat for 2 sets of 15 reps each side.

9. If time permits, these can be followed up with a few rounds of yogasanas like bhujangasan, sethubandhasan, dhanurasan and naukasan for core fitness.

10. Relax in shavasan and do 10 minutes of pranayam. All of this will take about 30-40 minutes. Alternate these with brisk walks. Maintain this routine for at least 4-5 days in a week coupled with a healthy diet of whole grains, millets, vegetables, sprouts, salads, soups, vegetable juices, fruits etc for attaining the results that you wish for and to stay Mickeymized. 

Source: TOI

Monday, May 18, 2015

20 best ways to relax after a hectic day

We all have times in our lives when we have a lot going on like meeting deadlines, exams, due dates etc, which can affect our stress levels and put our health at risk. So, Kanchan Naikawadi, Director, Indus Health Plus (P) Ltd, has listed the 20 best ways to unwind after a hectic day.

Take 5-minute breaks every hour
Take 5 minutes for yourself if you have a busy schedule. No matter how efficiently you work, you'll always get distracted and let your mind wander. So, step out of the office for a breath of fresh air and mild exercise to improve concentration levels.

A great way to relax is to simply stretch. Try to feel your body and pay attention to your breathing. A simple stretch relieves muscle tension and can do wonders for improving your focus at work.

Take a refreshing shower
A warm water bath, a cold bath or a bubble bath can work wonders. It is a cheap and fun way to soothe your muscles and relax. Use your favourite bubble bath or bath oil to calm and relax you. A shower also clears your head and helps you sleep soundly.

Get close to nature
There is nothing more relaxing than being surrounded by greenery, the sea or the mountains. Being close to nature helps us connect with ourselves. So, simply looking out of the window or going for a walk in the park can do the trick.

Drink enough water and eat healthy food
It is tempting to order pizza, but it really pays off to take time to cook and eat nutritious and healthy food. Not only will it help you keep fit, it will also boost your mood. A full happy stomach always keeps us upbeat and energised.

A pet can help you relax
Pets are a great way to de-stress, as they make us feel happy and loved.

Spend time with family and friends
Spending time with friends, engaging in some light banter with co-workers, reading comics, spending quality time with your kids and spouse can improve your mood and help you relax. So, make sure you are in touch with people that make you happy and inspire you.

Pamper yourself at your favourite spa
It's exhilarating to give in to your senses and simply relax. Get a pedicure or a nice soothing facial to rejuvenate both your skin and mind.

You do not have to go on a retreat to the mountains to feel relaxed. Five minutes of quiet time is all it takes to reap the benefits of meditation and relieve stress and depression. So find a comfortable spot, concentrate on your breathing, and watch the stress melt away.

Accept yourself 
Positive affirmations can greatly impact your mood. So, instead of indulging in negative thoughts, tell yourself you look and feel good, you're doing great and that you can handle everything that comes your way.

Do something for yourself
Reward yourself with gifts, chocolate and mini-breaks whenever you finish a task. Focusing on yourself and making yourself a priority can boost your mood and help you relax.

Listen to your favourite music
Stress relieving calm music will help relax you and upbeat music will help boost your mood.

Cook a simple meal
Cooking can be therapeutic and can help take your mind off things that may be stressing you, plus you can enjoy the benefits of a good nutritious meal.

Wear comfortable clothing
On reaching home, shed your work clothes and change into clothing made from cottons and linens. This will help you relax.

Spend time with yourself
Find a zen spot in your home where you can sit down and relax for a few minutes after a long tiring day. Make sure to switch off your mobile phone.

Wash or splash your face with cold water
This little trick will energise and invigorate you. Washing away the dirt and grime from you face will leave you feeling cool and refreshed.

Slow and deep breathing
Slow, deep breathing can help lower blood pressure. Try pranayama breathing, a yogic method that involves breathing through one nostril at a time to relieve anxiety.

Take a nap
It's easy to think that a few extra hours of work will do you good, but it won't. Sleep is important so make sure you get plenty of it.

A head massage can do the trick
A head massage can increase blood flow, curb headaches and improve sleep and is a great way to fight stress and ward off illness.

Write it down
Starting a journal is a great way of communicating with yourself and lowering your stress levels.

Source: TOI