With summer coming to an end and the days getting shorter, we all want to feel as energized as possible as we wake up. When it comes to waking up fresh, happy, and ready to tackle the world, there are a bunch of tricks to try. Start your morning feeling more rejuvenated and centred with these tips.
They say in giving, it’s the thought that counts. It’s a sentiment doubly true of health and wellness gifts, which have the potential to rub people the wrong way. “Here’s a present to help improve your current condition!’’ Thinking in advance about the wants and needs of your giftee improves giving accuracy, helping you avoid awkwardness and waste.
When it comes to health- and wellness-related gifts, it’s all about the lifestyle and aspirations of your giftee. Is he or she more about jogging or marathons? Swimming lengths or aquasize? Lifting weights using a workout torn from a magazine, or taking classes with a professional trainer?
Knowledge is power, and we’ve got a suite of helpful suggestions. Of these four people, we bet you have at least one on your gift list.
Your bestie Amy practices yoga at home and at the gym, wants to lose weight, and is careful about what she, and everyone else, eats.
A workout mat and a colourful yoga outfit is the perfect gift — the clothes can double as a “run-around-town” outfit for when she’s out with the kids.
A wearable fitness tracker. Mom and Dad are now fluent with their smartphones, and like to assist their exercise with a handful of apps. Take it to the next level with a Fitbit.
In addition to lifting weights with a trainer, your competitive brother Dan does cross-fit, runs a few kilometres each week, and loves his morning protein shakes.
Prepared smoothie and shake mixes. Dan’s probably got strong preferences when it comes to protein powder, so do reconnaissance before you shop. If you’re not sure, Vega makes an excellent protein smoothie for early mornings short of time, or top-ups throughout the day.
Your sister Bella is naturally slim and fit, which is annoying, and she’s considering starting a “10,000 steps a day” program.
Sometimes, you need to recharge. It can be hard to do in a busy life – work, family, kids, friends, hobbies, chores, errands…. So why not get away for a bit? Even a few days is enough time to rest, breathe, and get back at it. We’ve gathered a few therapeutic retreat options that might be just what you need.
If you want to get away for some self-reflection but wilderness isn’t really your thing, this yoga retreat at the Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise is for you. The retreat includes two nights’ luxury accommodation at the hotel, gourmet meals, and a selection of yoga & meditation classes as well as a few nature walks around beautiful Lake Louise. Worried about a retreat being too rigid? The schedule is entirely optional – attendees are free to join activities as they wish (meaning you can sneak away for a mid-afternoon savasana). Namaste.
Don’t we all wish we could have 10 more hours in a day? That’s impossible, of course, but by boosting your brainpower, you can increase your productivity, which will create the illusion of more time. While there exist quick fixes for sharpening your brain (like eating antioxidant-filled blueberries or going for a run to score some endorphins), these three tips work best as habits to develop and maintain over time.
Getting your minimum six hours isn’t even the most important aspect of sleep – what’s really important is getting high quality sleep. Try a sleep-tracking app like Sleepbot or a Fitbit to track your REM cycles. You can also use such apps to set an adjustable alarm that will wake you when your sleep is lightest to increase the quality of your sleep.
You can also unplug before bed to improve your sleep quality. The blue light found on tablets, smartphones, and eReaders actually signals your body to wake up, right before going to bed. Try reading a paper book before bed instead.
Lastly, cutting caffeine (at least in the afternoons, if you can’t live without your morning cuppa) will better the quality of your sleep, among other benefits. Still need a three o’clock pick-me-up? Try an iced herbal tea to give you a boost without the buzz.
Abandon your GPS and calculator in favour of using a map or doing calculations in your head. You can also sign up for a daily-word email to increase your vocabulary. Exercising your brain can also be accomplished by playing Scrabble (or Words with Friends!) instead of just talking or texting. Interestingly, socialization is also hugely beneficial to your brain. By inviting friends over, you reduce your chances of dementia. What better excuse is there to open a bottle of wine?
Another way to stimulate your brain is to do something new. This can be as simple as walking somewhere instead of driving, as intense as trying a new sport. Learning a new language or instrument also positively impacts the brain.
First, kick the habit. Cigarettes have been linked to memory deficits, so the sooner you quit, the better it is for your body and brain.
Exercise regularly, even if it’s just a longer walk to your car. Try parking further from work, or getting off the bus earlier than usual to increase your walking distance. Practicing yoga or meditating also works – just 30 minutes a day contributes greatly to mental capacity.
Eating right also has a big impact. That means loading up on superfoods like blueberries, almonds, dark chocolate, and greens to boost your brain, but also making a habit of staying hydrated and eating clean and balanced meals.
Have you ever needed that extra little bit of motivation, or a reminder to get active? London Drugs tech expert David Levett sat down with anchor Darrell Rumold on CTV Morning Live in Regina to discuss some of the newest products on the market for monitoring fitness.
For someone looking for something simple, yet effective for fitness tracking, FitBit might be the perfect choice. These activity trackers are a very user-friendly option and are best suited for entry-level to average fitness trackers who want something simple. David showed off the FitBit Charge HR model, capable of tracking essential fitness measures like steps taken, calories burned and active minutes. The charge also acts a watch and is able to sync wireless to any laptop or smartphone. FitBit can also monitor one’s sleep. David explained in the newscast how the FitBit would track sleep and then display on an iPad the amount and quality of sleep he had. Starting as low as $70, FitBit provides an affordable option for users who want effective fitness monitoring without complexities.