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Saturday, December 5, 2020

Find time to look after your health

Regular columnist Stephen Smith, from Merewether Fitness Studio, believes that, to say you don’t have the time is just another way of saying “I don’t want to!”


Yes, you guessed it, this week’s topic is time. Or, to be more specific, finding the time to look after your health.

When it comes to our health there are two specific areas where people use time, or their lack of time, as an excuse.

These areas are nutrition and exercise.

With nutrition, the key is to be prepared. When meal times come around or you feel like a snack, having a meal plan or food already prepared will prevent you from going for unhealthy, fast food options.

A banana, an apple or a small packet of nuts are three simple snacks that can be eaten in a few minutes and taken just about anywhere. 

Not having time to sit down and eat is one occasion when a health shake can be of benefit.

Make sure you do your research if buying online or ask the shop staff for the healthiest options.

Now to exercise. The World Health Organisation (WHO) states that “insufficient physical activity is one of the leading risk factors for death worldwide”.

Owner and Head Trainer at Merewether Fitness Studio, Stephen Smith.

WHO also has guidelines on how often you should exercise, for how long and at what intensity but, for now, I am just going to tell you that just about anything is better than nothing.

Ten to 20 minutes of moderate exercise a day is better than an hour once a week. This time of year is perfect to set your alarm a bit earlier and go for a brisk walk or join a local gym. I say local because, for someone who perceives they are short of time, the best gym is the one they drive past on a regular basis.

While preparing this article, my wife told me a story about an old friend of hers.

This lady was a single, working mum with three children. Like a lot of you mums, she spent a lot of time getting her children to their extracurricular activities.

One of those activities was swimming. One day, while sitting by the pool, she decided she was going to bring her swimmers the next time her kids had a lesson and do some laps.

She swam twice a week for 30 minutes and this made her realise that, with a little planning, she could find other small windows of opportunity to do some exercise. Over the next two years, she lost 25 kilos.

If you are interested, here is a link to the WHO exercise guidelines.

So, the simple message is this: If you don’t find time for your health, sooner or later, you will be forced to find time for illness.

Until next time,

Health & Happiness,

Stephen