Mental Health

10 Techniques on How to Enhance Your Mental Health

Just like you cannot get toned arms by lifting weights once, you cannot improve your mental health by just practicing once. This process requires patience, gratitude, and stability to become fully successful.

Neuroscientists have been working for a long time and finally figured out how to develop the way our brains work. We have learned that through exercise, at any age, we can become fit and healthy. If you have low mental health, no matter how much physically charged you are, you cannot progress properly throughout the day.

Let us explore 10 methods on how to work on our Mental Health;

  1. Keep in mind that not everything we think is useful

The ability to think is merely affected by our very own experiences. If we have had good experiences, we will have more positive thoughts; if not, then vice-versa. Our past directly affects every judgment we make in the present.

We often forget that our choices are based on what we have been through; our mind automatically starts to filter in and out accordingly. For example, if you have had a rocky past, your mind automatically takes everything more negatively than others.

Learn to embrace the fact that everyone has faced something or the other in their past. Do not let what has passed be the basis of your judgment of what you are doing. Learn to think from different aspects.

  1. Think, and Train your Mind to so

Taking a deep breath and calmly thinking and evaluating bad situations strengthens your mind for the future. You automatically get trained on how to have a subtle approach towards problems. You can practice meditation, as it helps to eliminate distractions and helps you focus. Before passing any comment, always use your mind, and if your instinct does not find it attractive, don’t do it or say it.

  1. Don’t get too caught up in though; Reality is Key

Have you ever come across a situation when you are already facing something negative, and instead of coming up with constructive criticism, your mind keeps on negatively overthinking the situation?

Instead of indulging, remember that you have a present to enjoy in the negative aspects of the problem. Instead of thinking about the situation’s solution, we end in a mountain of repeating fears and exhaust ourselves.

At this moment in time, we are supposed to remember that we have a present to engage in. How to do that? Use your senses! Eat something you love or watch a good movie. Your attention should be on what is happening now.

  1. Have Some Peace of Mind

Just like when you are in a long weightlifting session, your body requires rest. Just like that, your mind requires rest from daily problems and needs to get fresh. Resting has been considered such a waste of time that people consider it as if progress will negatively suffer while taking it.

In reality, taking a good amount of rest allows your mind to open to various opportunities and produce more productive ideas. Rest does not have to include sleeping; it could also be visiting an old friend or whatever relaxes your mind.

  1. Turn off the Noise

Unfortunately, we are trapped in the digital age. A series of notifications, messages and calls can easily distract us from what is really important. We need to learn the art of prioritising things.

Starting from minimising, reducing the number of notifications you receive by simply turning them off. Try to only keep essential notifications on, as cutting off from the world is not a solution to end your worries and relax.

  1. Give Sleep Preference over anything

Always remember an active body demands an active mind. There is no denying that the amount of the time we are awake, we spend it indulging in lots of useful activities, but there is no point in having useful activities if we are not completely charged. That is why sleep is extremely important, as it allows us to give our level best and enjoy every minute when we are awake. Try to turn off your phone when you make up your mind to sleep. From time to time, distractions can prevent oneself from having a peaceful and deep sleep.

  1. Establish a set routine and Create a Ritual

If you feel like relieving mental stress and relaxing your mind can be achieved by meditating. Do that. Make it a part of your routine. Saying that is easy, but making that happen is not. Make sure you set a time and attach an existing habit to this new habit.

For instance, if you shower daily, remember to meditate after your shower. This way, you will get used to meditating after your shower. Your mind will automatically remind you after the shower that your meditation awaits you.

The key is to enjoy what you are doing; only then can you receive complete success. Ritual is something else. Rituals allow us to get away from the normal boring every day and explore something new every time we experience something.

For example, if you are meditating, you can choose to decide on a specific room; this way, your mind will automatically give you a feeling of peace whenever you enter that room. Your ritual could have a memory or a gesture of a loved one associated with them as well.

  1. Learn to Let Things Go Their Way

Humans often try to monitor and control things, which really are not in our control. When things do not go our way, or we want them to, we get frustrated and easily cranky. We need to accept the fact that not everyone and everything is under our control.

All we can try to do is give our full potential and hope to get results according to the efforts we have put in. Be kind to yourself, as no one is perfect. Things do not always go as planned because if they did, how we would learn to adapt?

  1. Listen to your Gut

Remember that your gut is never wrong. Our inner instincts have been made so that they do not always come out the same way. On some days, it might just be a little voice or thought inside you, or sometimes something you feel in your gut. Most of the time, we ignore this little intuition because it does not match what society tells us, but we build faith in ourselves when we do follow it.

This is merely a way to show self-love and how much you embrace yourself. Learn to consider yourself higher than the standards set by people around you. Societal pressure always lets you down; make sure you are always above it.

  1. Just Breathe Within

Breathe has been proven to be an extremely powerful tool when it comes to calming oneself. You matter what the situation is, be it a business meeting, an exam, or even a big official dinner. Just breathing can relieve pressure and balance your emotions. It allows your blood pressure to become stable, which helps in having a clearer thought process.

Some helpful breathing exercises could include;

  • Pause everything for a minute, put everything aside, and take a deep breath in with your nose.
  • Hold it within for a minute.
  • Then just exhale, breathe, and along with it, let off all your worries. Remember just to relax. Everything will work out!
  • Take a pause, and repeat it multiple times until you are completely calm.

Friendly advice: Try to make your exhales longer compared to your inhales; this definitely helps in keeping you calm.

 

yoga

Ten benefits of practicing yoga

Yoga is a mental, physical and spiritual practice that people have been carrying out for ages. Throughout the years, it has transformed a lot through meditation, philosophy, and religion.

In today’s world, it has become a popular activity. There is a variety of types of yoga, and that makes it suitable for everyone. It doesn’t only strengthen muscles and burn calories. Instead, it’s a complete workup that involves the mind and the body.

Yoga is a personal activity. That’s the reason why many people choose to practice it. After heading home from a hectic day, you would want to do something that allows you to focus only on yourself and gives you some space for breathing. Yoga does that perfectly.

Benefits of practicing yoga:

  1. It helps to develop strength:

Without a doubt, yoga is excellent for building your strength. To function efficiently in your daily life, you need more power. When you think about improving your fitness, you might be thinking only about going to the gym. However, lifting weights isn’t the only exercise for working out. Regularly practicing yoga can help to tone and stretch your body muscles. Poses, such as the plank, help strengthen your abs, shoulders, arms, and legs.

  1. Increases flexibility:

To practice yoga, you need plenty of practice. It can take years for you to do some advanced poses. However, the best part about yoga is that you can practice at your level of ability. You don’t need to be flexible before you start your Yoga journey. Instead, as you keep practicing, you’ll feel a difference in your body’s flexibility. Doing exercises like running or strength training can tighten your muscles. Yoga acts as the perfect supplementary exercise and helps to improve your muscle strength and joint flexibility.

  1. Rehabilitate:

When you leave stiff joints and old injuries unattended, they tend to get worse over time. It’s essential for you to keep your body moving. Because yoga works up your entire body, it removes anything that was causing you issues. Yoga is progressive and slow. Thus, you can move your joints and muscles gently.

  1. Helps to relieve stress:

Liberation is a theme that is a crucial part of yoga. Its meditative side helps to get rid of all unnecessary thoughts present in your mind. Yoga assists in freeing the mind. That does require training, but it does not mean that untrained people cannot benefit from it. Yoga is incredibly mindful. That suggests that it’s beneficial for all those who are suffering from anxiety or depression.

  1. Helps to keep you motivated:

Well, unlike high-intensity interval training, yoga is an activity that you can practice daily. The timings also depend upon you. It’s not necessary to spend an hour on it. Even if you choose to spend ten minutes from your morning, it’s a productive way to begin your day. It’s also the perfect way to look after tight muscles and stiff joints. Regular practice can help you progress and build your strength.

  1. It gives you a new perception of life:

Another essential aspect of doing yoga is that it allows you to view everything from a distinct perspective. Positions with inversions let you deeply contemplate and look at the world using a different angle. Such exercises are perfect for lifting your mood and meditating.

  1. It allows you to interact with more people: 

The popularity of yoga suggests that it’s an excellent way for people to gather at a place and meet each other. You can make new friends. It’s also possible to interact with them outside class. It would be productive to go for coffee and chat about your life experiences, or you could only stretch together in a park. You’ll meet many people you have interests that are similar to yours.

  1. Improves posture:

Most of us have lifestyles where we spend most of our time sitting at a desk or watching screens. That leads to severe issues. It’s common to see that almost every person has some problem with the shoulders or back. When you practice yoga, it improves your flexibility and core strength. You become aware of the posture of your body. When you increase the power within your shoulders and your back, you can sit up-right more comfortably. You will automatically avoid sitting in poor sitting postures.

  1. It prepares you for your future:

Joint flexibility and muscle strength aren’t only essential for your daily life. They will help you avoid any problems in the future. As we get older, we become more prone to getting injuries. Your health generally starts declining as you age. Many older people get arthritis and other bone/muscle-related issues. However, if you build your strength, you can become more balanced and stay active.

  1. Helps you stay healthy and fit:

For most people, yoga is not only a fitness class. It is a crucial way of living. Yoga teaches people to stay mindful and look after their bodies. Besides strengthening and stretching, yoga makes us conscious of what we are eating and how much time we spend meditating. After all, mental health needs to be equally vital to one’s physical health. Yoga will help you find the correct balance. That ultimately has a tremendous effect on your life.

One can achieve many benefits from practicing yoga. There are many versatile types of yoga styles. That allows everyone to practice the poses that they prefer. It’s always better to pick out some and try them out. That way, you’ll get a better idea of which one suits you the most.

 

Why use the Overload Principle?

The overload principle is a fairly straightforward idea that posits that in order to improve your health and get in better shape. For this you must progressively overload your body. Lifting heavy weights, running longer distances, working out more days a week, along with other forms of physical exertion. This causes the body to adjust and become leaner, stronger, quicker, and more energetic.

It is very likely that if you are a trainer, you have already been exposed to the premise of the overload principle. It is a concept that you should understand firmly and deeply enough to structure optimal workouts for clients and friends alike. To assist you in helping you and your clients reach their health goals. We will go over the basics of the overload principle and elaborate on some invaluable tips with regard to it.

What Is The Overload Principle?

Fitness abides by seven primary ‘laws’ and the overload principle is one of them. The idea is simple: in order to see persistent movement in fitness-related results (strength, muscle size, endurance, etc.), the duration, type, and intensity of one’s workout must progressively increase.

When a client begins their workout regimen, because they are sedentary before it, the body begins to quickly respond to the new regimens. As the client becomes more fit, exercising at a persistent rate, with the same methods, and steady intensity. They will begin to bring in diminishing returns, until the progress essentially plateaus. As the body adjusts to the stress of the exercise routine, it will become the new norm. Therefore no further progress will be made until the body is forced to endure higher stress levels by systematically increasing exercise.

Issues With The Overload Principle?

To make athletic and fitness performance gains, it is necessary to engage in overloading. When the overload principle is not applied, or not applied correctly, the results will be detrimental.

Ignoring the Overload Principle

If the client continues to train with persistent intensity and frequency as when they started, ignoring the overload principle, the level of gains made will quickly lessen until no further gains are made. Since our bodies are good at adapting to stress, a small amount of exertion goes a long way at first, but once our bodies get stronger, the same training level no longer pushes the body enough to produce any value.

Overdoing The Overload Principle

The other side of the spectrum is also problematic. When necessary stress applied is exceeded by increasing the intensity of workouts too quickly, the overreach causes overexertion of effort. Which then takes the body out of commission, potentially for days.

Overtraining is another example of the excess of the overload principle. This happens when the trainee goes far beyond the scope of the necessary training. With the correct amount of overloading than their body is ready for, over a lengthy period of time. This could result in a state that it takes weeks or even months off of optimal performance levels. This is due to putting far too much into the exercise regimen.

When you know you have overtrained

If you suspect that you have overtrained, there are some signs to look out for to tip you off. These include:

  • Loss of sleep, weight, or appetite
  • Increased resting heart rate and blood pressure
  • Fatigue
  • Long recovery times
  • Emotional instability (irritability, mood swings, etc.)
  • Chronically sore muscles

Proper Methods Of Overloading

There are a few strategies that can be leveraged to assure that your client healthily continues to overload without hitting a plateau. Every strategy is ultimately predicated on increasing a workout factor, or multiple factors throughout the duration of their training. Put together, the expansion of these factors becomes known as the FIIT (frequency, intensity, time, and type) principle.

  • Frequency: The number of times your client exercises per week. When the frequency is increased, the number of exercise instances weekly goes up.
  • Intensity: How much effort your client has to put into a particular workout. For instance, running on a treadmill can involve increasing the speed and tilting the angle of the track to simulate running uphill.
  • Time: As exercise routines progress, the time spent engaging in them can increase. If a client runs for 15 minutes, increasing the run to 25 minutes is an example of the time overloading principle’s application.
  • Type: This is the actual exercise the client is engaged in. For instance, if the client is exercising their upper body and they do pushups to do so, adding weight lifting to the regiment is an example of a type overloading.

One important factor is to change up the overloading aspects for the client. In other words, when the intensity is increased in one session, another aspect, like frequency, should be increased in the subsequent session. If the client runs, one day the speed at which they run can be increased. The following day, the speed can be slower, but the time can be increased. This way the overloading exertion on the body varies. This helps minimize the chances of plateauing.

How To Gradually And Safely Overload

The key to applying overload is to do so gradually and progressively as it can be dangerous to the client to increase any of the training’s elements too rapidly. It will lead to overtraining, and more pertinently can result in muscle soreness or injury. Here are some important rules to follow when applying the overload principle.

  1. Map out a gradual plan to increase overload throughout the exercise regimen. To reduce overreaching or overtraining problems, and certainly to mitigate the risk of injury, you should never permit a client to make too drastic of a jump in any category.

 

  1. When dealing with strength training, focus on working on the form prior to progressing to heavier weights. When it comes to weights, you should look to increase the frequency and time factors prior to increasing the intensity. It is only when the client has learned a safe and productive form, that a slow increase in intensity by upping the weight.

 

  1. Before deciding on the appropriate amount of intensity and weight, you should always test your client’s maximus.

 

  1. It is important to log your client’s progression across all categories, to trend how the various categories are being increased.

 

  1. To avoid overtraining and injury, make sure to plan for recovery time. This recovery time can be in the form of a rest day. However, the rest day does not need to be lacking in any type of exercise. It can involve engaging in a light workout or alternating it with harder ones.

 

  1. Don’t train until the point that your client burns out. Overload is good for progression but going until the client is exhausted or nearing collapse is never a healthy approach.

Periodization within the overload principle

To get actual results from training, the client’s progression should not be viewed linearly. A way to accomplish this is through periodization. Periodization is the idea of variety in the training regimen, meaning that the training should alternate in its approach. Not every subsequent workout should be a longer, harder, and faster version of its predecessor.

The term “periodization” refers to the systematic preparation of training periods. This is a necessary training strategy for accommodating the overload principle. While varying the workout types, it is also important to variate the high-intensity ones. Do this with either low-intensity alternatives, or periods of rest. This is the theory behind the GAS (general adaptation syndrome) principle. In essence, it is the application of longer, frequent, and more intense workouts. Which need to be properly mixed in with rest and less intense exercise.

What are periodization cycles

The periodization plan involves three types of approaches:

  • Macrocycles: This refers to an extended period of training (typically lasting from 6 months to a year in length). These training sessions are geared for some final goal or competition. For example, a runner can train for the better part of a year to ultimately run a marathon, with the present goal of beating a realistic time expectation for its completion.
  • Mesocycles: These cycles are partitions of the macrocycle, which are broken down into periods of months, or several weeks. These are cycles made to accomplish small goals. In the case of a marathon runner, these could involve running a half marathon or even a 10k. These periods can focus on particular aspects of the training such as hypertrophy for lifting and strength training.
  • Microcycles: While keeping the overarching goal of a macrocycle in mind for your client, these short week to two week periods keep to a more detailed workout focusing on attainments in particular training areas.

Why is periodization so important?

Periodization helps you to change up your client’s overall workout and take advantage of overload. To do this you need to include sufficient recovery or low-intensity tasks into the mix. Changing the emphasis of each mesocycle and varying sessions within each microcycle helps achieve the overall targets by providing adequate overload, variety, and recovery time.

The overload theory is a central concept of fitness. Without overloading the body, you will never see improvements in muscle mass, stamina, height, or aerobic health. However, overreaching and overstressing the muscles results in overtraining, which leads to diminishing returns and risks injury.

For these reasons, it is imperative to establish the right overload balance. One that will achieve results without sacrificing bodily health. When paired with periodization in a proper workout program, your clients can experience appropriate overload levels. This results in significant health improvements as well as the achievement of their physical and success targets.

Benefits of Functional Training

Benefits of Functional Training

Functional training is an approach to fitness that involves training your body to perform activities of daily living. This means things like climbing stairs, carrying and loading groceries or lifting your grandchild. This type of training grew out of physical therapy and rehab training. With the end goal being functional independence. Functional training is widely used for anyone who wants to stay fit as they age or train for a specific task, like a firefighter or soldier.

So What Are The Benefits Of Functional Training?

Muscle Balance And Joint Stability

There are a variety of benefits from functional training. Starting with muscular balance and joint stability, resulting in a reduced risk for injury. Functional training will enhance your body’s natural ability to move freely. This is without restriction thanks to improved flexibility. If you experience joint pain, you should use functional movements. This is because they are proven to decrease the level of joint pain experienced. This is thanks to a focus on rehabing your joints and flexibility.

Stronger Stabilizer Muscles

Core Training is a type of functional training which more people are familiar with. Core training strengthens the muscles that support (and stabilize) three main areas:

  • Your spine
  • The skeletal system
  • All the muscles that allow you to sit, stand, twist and turn.

Functional training works stabilizer muscles. Improving your balance, making you less prone to falls and injury. Stabilizer muscles (like your abs) help you stay balanced and aligned. Further more this training allows you to strengthen both your prime movers (major muscles) and their stabilizers to improve strength and function.

Improved Body Mechanics

One overlooked benefit of this type of training is the improvement of body mechanics. When your body is stronger and your muscles are trained to work together, you move better. Additionally, functional exercises improve body awareness, your mind body connection. When practicing functional training, proper form is important. Since functional exercises are selected to improve and strengthen movements of everyday life, it is important to include exercises that support better posture when sitting and standing, and include lifting, bending and twisting. When available, use resistance bands and dumbbells at home, or do bodyweight movements such as pushups, sit-ups, planks and squats.

 

Functional Training Exercises

Additionally there are seven basic movements that your body can perform. All the types of exercise you need are variations of these movements: Pull, Push, Squat, Lunge, Hinge, Rotation and Gait.

Examples of beneficial functional training exercises include:

To conclude this type of training goes beyond training for vanity or appearance. You must train muscles that you do not see like your core muscles, stabilizers and accessories muscles. Think back to the number of people you know who hurt themselves performing small tasks like lifting groceries or moving a box or furniture. These injuries will be prevented by a few basic functional exercises performed at home or in the gym.