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October Health Tips: Breathe, Keep drinking water & Make time for loved ones

Physical- Breathe.

Working out will naturally increase your respiration rate as your working muscles start demanding more oxygen to keep up with the requirements of the exercise. However, when it comes to lifting weights, sometimes the incredible focus and force that you’re using to move the weights take centre stage, resulting in holding your breath until the reps are complete.

Now, don’t get us wrong, there’s a time and a place for holding your breath during an entire rep (think spinal stabilization during heavy squats and deadlifts), BUT, for most of the intensity and volume that we do during classes at TriForce demand the classic “Inhale during the eccentric, exhale during the concentric”-- that is, inhale while on the way down (while the muscles are lengthening), and exhale on the way up (while the muscles are contracting to move the weight). And during those tough high-intensity conditioning intervals, just concentrate on keeping a consistent breathing pattern.

Focusing on your breathing ensures adequate oxygen delivery to the muscles (and to the brain, preventing dizziness!), stabilizes the core, increases recovery rate, and can help lift that heavier set of dumbbells by coordinating your body’s efforts. Give it a try next class!

Nutrition- Keep drinking that water.

Alas, the muggy summer days slowly fading-- a bittersweet goodbye. When it’s hot and sweaty, our body is constantly reminding us to drink water. With the coldness setting in, it’s more important to keep sipping away BEFORE thirst kicks in, because, as we’ve been told, you may already be dehydrated by the time thirst kicks in.

Staying hydrated is vital to good health. Not only does water help regulate our body temperature (thank you , but it also it important in many bodily functions like bowel regularity, muscle function (so long sudden muscle cramps!), weight loss/ maintenance, skin health and “detoxing” (i.e. sweat and excretion), -- to name a few.

Studies are all over the map when it comes to recommendations for water consumption-- in fact, a few recommend focusing on eating raw fruit and veggies as your main source of hydration, and add in water as needed. As for us, we wholeheartedly support increasing your raw fruit and veggie intake for so many reasons-- hydration being one of them. However, from our experience, we’ve found that TriForcers that increased their water intake to 3-6L a day found that their hunger was more consistent, their muscles recovered faster, and they felt like they had more clarity. As for our recommendation to you, keep a filled water bottle with you at all times. Aim to refill it at least 3 times during the day. Soon you’ll find that sweet hydration spot that works for you!

Mental- Make time for your loved ones.

The busy holiday season is just starting, which is the perfect time to pencil in some hangouts! Yes, we’re telling you to add one more thing to your to-do list. According to the Public Health Agency of Canada, having strong relationships lowers your risks for all-around morbidity and mortality, which may be due to the emotional and physical support offered to deal with adversity, stress and other life events (i.e. when your in-law is getting sassy over the stuffing). Moreover, having the opportunity to share a few laughs or help out creates a sense of satisfaction and contentment that aids in overall well-being.

So next time you feel guilty for stopping in at Timmies for a coffee with an old friend while your to-do list remains unscathed, think of your health, sit back and relax, and crack a few jokes.

Here’s one of our favourites that Jenn’s dad told to all her friends:

A bear and a rabbit are taking a poop in the woods. The bear turns to the rabbit and says, "Hey, do you ever have trouble with poop sticking to your fur?" The rabbit replies, “No I do not.” So the bear picks up the rabbit and wipes his butt.

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