Category

Stress

Personal Trainers Vancouver Share Ways To Reduce Stress In Your Life And Sleep Better

By | Blog, Sleep, Stress | No Comments

TurnFit Personal Trainers Vancouver share their tips on how to reduce stress and how to sleep better. These are easy tips and tricks and before you know it your stress will be lower and you will be having more fun.

It’s Time To Have More Fun

Somewhere along the line, we get to a point where we don’t have the time to have fun. Nay, we don’t take the time. Between the stresses of work, our daily commute, looking after kids and all the rest, squeezing in a bit of fun for ourselves can just become another chore.
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FALL ASLEEP FAST! 5 WAYS TO UNWIND
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At TurnFit, we haven’t made it to being Vancouver’s top rated personal trainers just by focusing on the physical. All of our coaches take a real, genuine interest in you, to equip you with the skills you need to improve all facets of your life, improve your emotional and social wellbeing, and ultimately- to have more fun!

Get in touch with us to see how we can assist, or to book your consultation today! 


About Turnfit

Turnfit Personal Trainers is founded by David Turnbull or “Coach David” – an experienced and successful Personal Trainer who strives to build happier, healthier lives every day.

With a focus on holistic health, we pride ourselves on making a difference and were recently awarded the 2019 Top Choice Award for Personal Trainer in Vancouver. 

Every trainer at Turnfit is committed and relentless in our pursuit to help you reach your health and wellness goals. It’s our mission to help you to build the skills, and mindset, it takes to feel successful in all areas of your life.

For more information, please visit Turnfit.ca, join our communities on Facebook and take advantage of all of our FREE content by subscribing to our YouTube channel.

We look forward to hearing from you!

-David Turnbull

man has fun in a ball pit

The Play-cebo Effect: Why Its Important to Play as an Adult!

By | mental health, Mindset, Stress

The weight of responsibility only seems to increase as we age. From work to kids and everything in between, we often forget to take some time out for ourselves, and we almost never take the time to play. Re-learning how to play as an adult can have incredible effects on our physical, emotional and social well-being. It can also help you to de-stress, bond with your children, and boost your mood, energy, and cognitive abilities. Are you ready for recess? 

It’s Time to Have More Fun

Somewhere along the line, we get to a point where we don’t have the time to have fun. Nay, we don’t take the time. Between the stresses of work, our daily commute, looking after kids and all the rest, squeezing in a bit of fun for ourselves can just become another chore. 

But ‘play’ as an adult doesn’t have to become tedious. It doesn’t mean you build a sandbox and buy some new trucks. Nor does it mean finding the old dollhouse in your parents’ attic and brushing the hair of a 1980’s Barbie.

As adults, the importance of play isn’t just to break up our routine. It is how we learn to be or continue to be, creative. It develops our personality and lets us enjoy the little things. It releases endorphins and improves neural plasticity. It increases our brain function, helps us to maintain dexterity, and can ultimately just help us to laugh. 

As kids, these activities are integral to our learning and cognitive development, and an incredible way to build social skills. But playing is just as important as adults for the same skills. Research has also shown that play can increase levels of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), which is essential for the growth and maintenance of brain cells. It can also improve memory and stimulate growth in the cerebral cortex.

“At work, play has been found to speed up learning, enhance productivity
and increase job satisfaction; and at home, playing together, like going to a movie or a concert, can enhance bonding and communication.”

-Lynn Barnett, professor of recreation, sports and tourism at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Source.

What Does It Mean to Play as an Adult?

Sometimes, when we think about play or recreation, we go straight to sports and physical activity. Whilst these have a myriad of benefits in an of themselves- they’re not the only way to play. As an adult, play is more about a conscious decision to undertake or participate in activities you enjoy! It can be anything that can help to stimulate your mind and body in positive ways, away from electronics and gadgets, and more importantly- in ways that your job cannot.

playing as an adult is just as important as it was growing up

Play is all about having fun, and not taking life too seriously!

It’s about taking things a little less seriously. Walking through your day with a lighter step and a bigger smile. And doing it just for its own sake!

Thankfully, ‘play’ as an adult can encompass a huge array of different activities- dependant solely on your imagination:

  • Board games and adult coloring books
  • Learning/playing an instrument
  • Becoming the artist you always dreamed of being
  • Engaging in community activities
  • Going for a walk or hike
  • Playing team sports
  • Joining a book club
  • Going to see a show or performance

“What all play has in common is that it offers a sense of engagement and pleasure, takes the player out of a sense of time and place, and the experience of doing it is more important than the outcome.”

Stuart Brown, founder of the National Institute for Play in Carmel Valley, California.

The activity itself doesn’t actually matter. Whatever you consider ‘play’ is up to you. The real motivation has to be in actually making time for it. For yourself. 

Physical Activity as a Form of Play

Although play as an adult can encompass just about anything, physical activity is a measurable and verifiable way to:

  • Keep us in shape
  • Strengthen your heart and lungs
  • Lower blood pressure
  • Improve or maintain dexterity and coordination
  • Release ‘good’ hormones and improve our mood
  • Help us to destress and relax
  • Improve social skills and meet new people
  • Teach us how to cooperate with others, especially in team settings
  • Support, and be supported, by those around you

Of course, these all have an effect on our physical self, but research has also shown that these benefits translate into all other forms of our lives- be it our work ethic and friendships, to home life and relationships with your children. Not to mention you’re setting a great example for them too!

Moreover, the on-going physical and social benefits provided by team sports and group physical activity have been shown to increase our happiness, help us manage stress, reduce our risk of dementia, ward off depression and prolong our lives.

“Highly playful adults feel the same stressors as anyone else,
but they appear to experience and react
to them differently,
allowing stressors to roll off more easily than those who are less playful”

Lynn Barnett.

Woman having fun with a smiley faced balloon
This Is One Playcebo We’re Happy to Take!

At the end of the day, whatever you consider ‘play’ is up to you, and re-learning to play as an adult is all about having an outlet. Somewhere to channel your creative and physical energy. The research has, and will continue to prove that it is incredibly beneficial for our health, and emotional and psychological well-being. 

At TurnFit, we haven’t made it to being Vancouver’s top rated personal trainers just by focusing on the physical. All of our coaches take a real, genuine interest in you, to equip you with the skills you need to improve all facets of your life, improve your emotional and social wellbeing, and ultimately- to have more fun!

Get in touch with us to see how we can assist, or to book your consultation today! 


About Turnfit

Turnfit Personal Trainers is founded by David Turnbull or “Coach David” – an experienced and successful Personal Trainer who strives to build happier, healthier lives every day.

With a focus on holistic health, we pride ourselves on making a difference and were recently awarded the 2019 Top Choice Award for Personal Trainer in Vancouver. 

Every trainer at Turnfit is committed and relentless in our pursuit to help you reach your health and wellness goals. It’s our mission to help you to build the skills, and mindset, it takes to feel successful in all areas of your life.

For more information, please visit Turnfit.ca, join our communities on Facebook and take advantage of all of our FREE content by subscribing to our YouTube channel.

We look forward to hearing from you!

-David Turnbull

woman walking outdoors with sunlight

Exercise and Mental Health: More Effective Than Medication

By | mental health, Mindset, Stress

The prevalance of mental illness is rapidly increasing in the western world, and our dependance on prescription medication has become an epidemic. However recent research would suggest that we have all the tools needed to implement a real, lasting solution- and we’ve had them all along! Exercise and mental health are a package deal, two facets of holistic health that complement each other. Of course, we already know that exercise is good for our physical self, so instead let’s dive into the effects of regular exercise on our psychology, and how it is helping us to re-wire our bodies and our minds.

woman walking outdoors with sunlight

Mental Health: The Facts and Figures

Before we look at the ways exercise can help our state of mind, it’s important we understand the full scope of mental health, and it’s related issues.

It has been reported that:

  • 1 in 5 adults experiences some form of mental illness every year.
  • 50% of all lifetime mental illness begins by age 14, and 75% by age 24
  • Rates of depression in young adults are increasing rapidly, 8.7 percent in 2005 to 12.7 percent in 2015.
  • Suicide has now become the second leading cause of death in the 10 to 34-year-old age bracket, and the fourth leading cause in people aged between 35 and 54.
  • Anxiety is the leading reported mental illness, accounting for 20% of diagnosis, followed by major depressive episodes at 7%.

It can be easy to sit back and assume that these things will never happen to you. However, the flow-on effects of mental health issues- whether they’re experienced by you, or the result of your influence/example over other people- can affect the physical and mental wellbeing of those around you:

  • People with depressive illnesses are 40% more likely to develop cardiovascular or other metabolic/physiological diseases
  • In 2018, almost 20% of adults with mental illness also experienced a substance use disorder in the U.S. That’s 9.2 million people.
  • Mental illness also increases rates of unemployment and highschool dropouts. 
  • The search for, and over-reliance on, a ‘quick fix’ has led to the opioid crisis, where the overprescription of opioid-based medicines is the leading cause of deaths caused by drug overdose- almost 68%

It’s time to go back to the basics. Placing the emphasis on exercise for mental health, rather than prescription medications. Research has shown the impact, and onset, of mental health issues, is particularly prevalent in young people. Turning back to physical activity as a solution not only positively impacts our lives, it creates the right foundation and examples for our children. It is also key to the ongoing support and development of our communities.

Exercise Physiology Psychology: How Does Exercise Affect our Mental Health?

We all know that physical activity, in any shape and form, can do wonders for our fitness and physique. When it comes to the mental effects of this exercise, however, it can be argued that it is even more beneficial for our state of wellbeing. 

And whilst you don’t need to spend hours per day in the gym or pushing your body past the point of exhaustion, you do indeed need to be active, engaged and present. It is recommended that you participate in some sort of aerobic activity, for at least 30 minutes, 3 times per week. This can be a brisk walk, jog, cycle, swim, anything that elevates the heart rate or requires some mental focus. 

Animated brain lifting a barbell

Exercising creates positive feedback loops with our mind, and the world around us

With this in mind (no pun intended), let’s look at 6 positive effects of exercise on mental health, and why we should all be aiming to squeeze a little more from our day! 

1. Exercise Can Reduce Depression and Anxiety

Endorphines are known as ‘mood-boosting’ neurochemicals. They are produced naturally in the brain and bind to our opioid receptors to regulate pain perception. Exercising, or any sustained physical activity has been shown to ease symptoms of depression and anxiety by stimulating our production of endorphins.

2. Say Goodbye to Alzheimer’s

Consistent exercise has been shown to positively affect the amygdala, which moderates our stress responses. It has also been shown to affect the hippocampus, which plays a role in the formation of memory and neural plasticity. It is this lack of plasticity as we age that is responsible for neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s and dementia. 

3. Exercise Regulates Mood and Sleep

Sleeping is our body’s chance to recharge and repair after a hard day’s work. However, with our constant exposure to blue light (thanks to phones, TV’s and computers), we now live in a society where more than 30% of people suffer from insomnia. This increases to 40-60% over the age of 60!
Physical activity can not only help you regulate your sleep patterns (say being more mentally alert in the morning, after exercise), you actually earn the rest at the end of the day.

4. Improve Confidence and Self Esteem

Exercising for mental health isn’t just about ‘curing’ something. It can also have long-lasting effects on our emotional states of being, including boosting our confidence and self-esteem. Not only do the physical benefits of exercise lead to these improved states, the social impact of exercising with other people- say in team sports or group training- can also enhance these feelings.

5. Relieve Tension and Excess Energy 

Our bodies are designed to utilize and expel energy. It has only been in the last 50 years that sedentary, desk-based jobs have become the norm. Unfortunately for most of us, this also means we are overconsuming food without burning off the energy it provides. Not to mention the overstimulation that often comes with a caffeine-rich diet. 
Exercising can help to relieve the muscle tension we develop from hours in seated positions, loosening muscles and putting us into the correct postural positions, whilst burning off all that excess energy at the end of the day! This, in turn, reduces our states of anxiety and mental alertness, giving us the chance to get a better night’s rest and jump out of bed in the morning.

6. Get Back in Touch With Nature

More recently, research has begun to show how being outdoors/in nature can supplement and enhance the effects of exercise on mental health. By being outside for a mere 20 minutes per day, participants reported increased feelings of ‘happiness and vitality,’ and it has been suggested that the mere presence of nature can ward off feelings of exhaustion. If there’s ever been a better reason to get outside and go for a walk, we haven’t heard it!

walking outdoors is great exercise for mental health

Get back in touch with the great outdoors, and watch your energy lift!

With all of these positive neural and emotional effects, it’s safe to say that exercising and mental health go hand in hand. By understanding these impacts, we can improve our own wellbeing, and positively affect the wellbeing of our children, families, and communities. 

If you’re finding it hard to get started or would like some advice about the right types of exercise for you, we’re here to help! With a host of online support and training available, free health assessments, and an emphasis on cultivating improved mental states, TurnFit can help you to achieve your health and wellness goals, safely. 

For more information, you can contact us via info@turnfit.ca or commit to be fit in 2020 and join our 6-week health transformation challenge today!

Practice and develop better thinking skills with meditation

Practice and Cultivate: Better Habits + Better Thinking = Less Stress!

By | Meditation, Mindset, Stress

They say that practice makes perfect, and it has never been more true when it comes to cultivating better thinking! What if I told you that with regular mindful practice, you can reduce your stress levels, increase your happiness, focus, and positivity, improve your health, sex life, strength, and will power, in 10 minutes per day, without working out? That’s right, 10 minutes. Surely that’s enough to at least finish reading this article? 

Practice and develop better thinking skills with meditation

Fight or Flight- It’s an Over Practiced Reaction

There’s plenty of information available about creating new habits and changing behaviors. Most of them will give you a step by step guide that you’ll never stick to, and wonder why nothing in your life has changed. Do you want to know why? 

While it generally takes 8 weeks to form a new habit, we’ve been forming (and practicing) bad habits our entire lives. How easy is it to turn on the TV instead of going for a walk? Or eat the rest of that Christmas pudding, and tell yourself you’ll work it off ‘tomorrow?’ 

Let’s face it. No one likes to be told what to do. And frankly, we all think we’re doing ‘the best we can.’ But without realizing it, this is a limiting belief in and of itself. The more we say it, the more entrenched it becomes. In doing so, we are reinforcing negative behaviors and thought patterns, which only makes them even more impossible to retract. 

Biologically, we are programmed to take the path of least resistance.

Remember the classic lesson about our ‘fight or flight’ response? For most of us, the option is always flight. You could go for a walk around the block, and of course, you know all the amazing benefits it will provide your mind and body. But it might cause you a little physical stress, and the easy option is to sit on the couch and order in, which is the option most people will take. 

For all the power of positivity and information that is available to us, every time we make a choice, be it positive or negative, we are reinforcing those behaviors. So every time you choose the couch, you are one step further away from choosing the walk. This is true of all facets of our lives, work, money, relationships, but let’s start with the things we can easily affect change in- our mental ‘blueprint.’

Meditative practice can improve self awareness and focus

Practicing better thinking can help to redesign our mental habits!

It’s Time to Redesign the Blueprint

In the same way that we have blueprints for buildings or ‘plans’ for our financials, we have also cultivated our own belief systems when it comes to our health and the things that are important to us. Just like building designs, however, they can be changed. Yes, it’s a lot of finicky work, and of course, it isn’t easy to make real, lasting change. After all, you’re trying to change years, and potentially decades of bad habits and thought patterns. 

BUT, If your health means more to you than your excuses, and if getting out of bed with a smile, or having the energy to keep up with your kids is more important than checking how many likes you have on Instagram, you can practice the skills it takes to affect that change. You have to. Nobody else can do it for you.

In the same way that working out helps us to build physical strength, we can flex and work our mental muscles of resilience, positive choice-making, and positive self-talk! By practicing these skills we reinforce beneficial behaviors and continue to make choices that are in our best interests. Eventually, these thoughts and actions become new, positive habits in our lives.

The Mind Follows the Body, the Body Follows the Mind

The word ‘health’ gets thrown around a lot, and for most people, they think it means hours in the gym to try and get that KK booty. But real health, the kind that actually improves our lives, begins with our internal dialogue, or self-talk. Before you can make any changes in your life you need to understand one thing- we talk to ourselves A LOT. More than 70% of the conversations you have in life are with that little voice upstairs. So first things first- you have to get that right.

To improve on your self-talk, practice by talking to others more positively! It’s a simple game, heck even smiling as you walk past someone in the street can be enough to lift your mood, and allow you to more fully engage in your choices. With simple physical gestures like this, you can improve your mental game. Being proud of yourself is incredibly rewarding- and in turn, you’ll continue this positive feedback loop! 

Second, remember that we are all human, and we are all here to learn. But to that effect we ask- when was the last time you did something new, for you? When was the last time you left your bubble, or ‘comfort zone’ as it is often called, and tried something different?

What are you missing out on, by not taking that chance?

Practicing your self awareness isn’t all yoga and meditation. If you want to improve your mental clarity, self-talk, and ultimately self-love, you have to push your own boundaries. You have to chase that feeling of achievement, and the satisfaction that comes from the journey. In doing so you help your mind and your body to practice and form new patterns and behaviors. It’s about making a choice- any choice- for you! 

Push your limits to increase your mental stamina

Practice pushing your boundaries, regardless of whether they’re physical or mental!

Don’t Forget to Breathe

Like all things in life, these changes won’t come quickly or easily. They are skills and lessons to be practiced– yes, that means more than once- and in doing so you will slowly build up a new skill set and tolerance to uncomfortable situations.

We did, however, promise that you could improve a wide range of things in your life in just 10 minutes per day, and it all begins with the breath. 

Sure, you’ve heard of meditation. You know it makes you focus on breathing, and the health benefits are shouted from rooftops the world over, but what many practitioners fail to explain is the how. 

We have been breathing since we escaped the womb. It’s the first thing we know how to do, and we don’t even control it. But meditation takes something that is unconscious and requires us to pay attention to it. To be conscious of it. Sounds pretty similar to what we’re trying to achieve in practicing and creating new habits, right? To become aware of our choices, and consciously make better ones, for ourselves?

Yes, focusing on the breath can help to quiet the mind. But the true power in a meditative practice is the flexing of these mental muscles. To bring your awareness and your focus back to an unconscious action, and then to take action. In as little as 10 minutes per day, meditating can help to build this resilience, reduce our blood pressure, improve positivity and build the skills it takes to make better choices for the rest of your life! 

That doesn’t mean you need to light incense and sit in horribly uncomfortable positions- you are not a monk. But if you can’t take 10 minutes- literally 0.007% of your day– to make time for yourself, to sit and just breath, how can you expect to change anything else? 

Like learning to walk, or ride a bike, learning to meditate takes practice!

Ready to Cultivate Better Thinking, and Practice Better Habits?

At TurnFit we can help you to get started on this journey and affect positive changes in your life- from the comfort of your own lounge room. With a range of easy to understand online courses and a team that will always go above and beyond to make sure you are comfortable, we can help you to kickstart your health and wellness goals, and maintain them for the rest of your life.

To get started, or for more information simply email info@turnfit.ca and we’ll work on building these skills, together. 

How To Manage Stress

By | Community Of Experts, Stress

How does stress affect women. Stress is a big that promotes weight gain.
What happens is cortisol loves fat cells especially around the waist. It goes into those fat cells and then tries to replicate itself, on top of that it attracts estrogen and that starts to replicate too. 

So how to you lower stress and cortisol levels?

Some quick tips are:

Learn how to belly breath instead of chest breathing. Did you know that if you are chest breathing often you are in fight or flight mode. When this happens, muscles that usually should be relaxed start to tighten and tense up in not a good way.

With David Turnbull, TurnFit Personal Trainers LTD, 3311 W Broadway & 4055 Cambie St, Vancouver BC, https://TurnFit.ca
&
Dr Sonya Jensen – Divine Elements Naturopathic Clinic, 2689 W Broadway, Vancouver, BC V6K 2G2, https://divineelements.ca/

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