INSHAPE NEWS OPINION
Diana Robinson- Nutritionist
In physical terms, yin and yang can be seen as water and fire or dark and bright. They are complementary, rather than opposing forces and everything in the natural world has both yin and yang aspects. It is something that has been forgotten in the western world, yet is so fundamental for the basis of health and wellbeing.
What happens when yin and yang is thrown out of whack?
When we have too much of one and not enough of the other, symptoms may manifest as an inability to deal with stress, increased anxiety or difficulty falling or staying asleep. It may also present in the way of skin conditions such as eczema or atopic dermatitis, or irregular bowel movements. Being out of balance may be the ultimate tipping point in the development of symptoms and ‘dis-ease’.
A balanced fitness program must incorporate both yin and yang activities. If you only do high intensity physical activities such as cardio, weights, boxing etc., you may experience yin deficiency symptoms such as muscle or nerve twitching that is not relieved but magnesium and electrolytes. Other common yin deficiency signs include dry skin, mouth and eyes, general fatigue and poor sleep, insomnia, a reddish coloured tongue with no coating and a ‘thin’ pulse. It is important to make some time in your exercise regime for calming activities such as yoga, tai chi or qi gong. These activities all focus on creating stillness within the mind and increasing energy flow throughout the body.
How to create perfect balance of yin and yang in your fitness program
Schedule your exercise days and be mindful to not over exert yourself. You may like to do 3-days of yang exercise such as a high intensity workout, a body pump class and a face paced run, and 2-days a week of a calming yoga class. Or, if yoga isn’t your thing, try at least 2-days a week of mindfulness meditation, followed by some gentle stretching and deep breathing. Another great way to incorporate more yin into your lifestyle is to set aside 10-minutes at the start of your day to do some gentle stretching and breathing exercises. Breath in new qi (energy or life force) and circulate throughout the body, exhaling the old stagnant qi that has accumulated throughout the night.
Diana Robinson is a Melbourne based nutritionist working in clinical practice with a special interest in food intolerance, fitness and mood disorders.
Diana graduated from Melbourne’s Endeavour College of Natural Health with a Bachelor Degree in Health Science – Nutritional Medicine. She is a firm believer in living life to the full and taking care of your body by feeding it healthy, nutritious food but not forgetting to nourish your mental wellbeing also.
Diana encourages patients to seek enjoyment from the food they eat rather than having a negative relationship with food. When you learn to eat right, you will learn that food is your friend and not your enemy.
You can follow her Instagram for inspiration and recipes @dianar_nutrition.
Anne Iarchy – Founder and Owner of The Finchley Weight Loss Centre by AI Fitness, and Public Speaker
Most people start a new fitness regime full of enthusiasm and generally go full on into it.
They book lots of exercise classes, decide to get up every morning to exercise, run or swim. But after a few days, they are aching all over, and very quickly they start missing a session here and there, until eventually, exercise comes to a halt.
Balanced is the key
When it comes to balance, there are a few aspects that need to be taken into account:
The Type of Exercise
I know it’s quite common to think that woman should only do cardiovascular exercise and man mostly strength training.
However, that’s totally wrong.
Everyone, no matter what age, should do a combination of both, with more emphasis on one or the other, depending on the goal they want to achieve.
And I always stress the importance of weight training for women, especially when getting closer to the menopause and later to prevent osteoporosis.
Don’t forget flexibility as part of your routine. 5-10 minutes at the end of every workout, and potentially a full session just of that, will keep you injury free, and flexible into old age.
If you look at most athletes today, no matter what field they are in, they now all combine cardiovascular exercise, strength training, and flexibility as part of their day to day training.
The Regularity of Exercise
It’s OK to exercise nearly every day. However, it’s important to give your body enough rest as well.
Doing strength training every day, unless doing split training is not recommended. However, it’s OK to do alternate a day of strength training with cardiovascular training.
It’s also recommended to have a full day of rest a week, with gentle physical activity.
Even if you exercise for weight loss, it’s important to feed your body enough for the exercise you’re doing.
Your muscles need food to rebuild and get stronger and sustain your effort.
So don’t starve yourself. Eat well, lots of protein, and healthy carbs before a workout.
And if you haven’t done any exercise for a while, ease yourself into it. Start with two heavier sessions a week and the rest some nice walks. And slowly build up.
Anne Iarchy is the founder and owner of The Finchley Weight Loss Centre by AI Fitness. She helps busy professionals create a healthy lifestyle for weight loss, exercise, nutrition and mindset change.
Anne’s passion was developed after struggling with weight and health issues herself while working in the corporate world as an IT security director. She found being on the road, traveling and in meetings made staying healthy a challenge.
At the time, she was working with a personal trainer herself, but never received a full-solution to her struggles. So in 2010, Anne left the corporate world, and started helping people just like her.
She continues to develop her knowledge in nutrition, supplementation, as well as mindset. And is a regular speaker within her local community in North London.
Anne’s latest eBook, ‘Ditch the Diet‘ is now available.
Disclaimer: The author’s professional and personal knowledge, and opinion, form the basis of this column. This information and opinion are not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment of any manner. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health providers with any questions you may have regarding any medical condition and consult a qualified medical professional before beginning any nutritional program or exercise program. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on InShape News.