Tuesday, August 21, 2012

5 ways to relax

Many people use medications as a way to relax, but this can be dangerous. Finding a good, natural way to relax can not only improve your quality of life, but can also help you lower your stress and deal with health and emotional problems. Finding a good way to relax will help you slow your breathing and heart rate, lower tension, and even help with chronic pain.

There are five great ways to relax, the first being autogenic relaxation, which involves body awareness and visual imagery. This is done by choosing a calming word or phrase and repeating it silently to relax.

Next, visualization requires you to think of calming and peaceful images.

Third, progressive relaxation is a technique that relaxes the groups of the muscles. This is a two step process, and involves first laying on a flat surface, and then starting at the head, tensing the muscles for five seconds, and then relaxing them for thirty seconds. Continue this throughout the body until you make it to the toes.

The fourth technique is to take a breathing break. Taking a 5-10 minute break to sit in a comfortable chair and taking a couple of deep breaths and then exhaling is a great way to relax.

Lastly, exercise is one of the best ways to help you clear your mind and body. Finding natural ways to relax, and staying away from prescription drugs, will not only help you feel better, but will help you live a much healthier life as well.


...relaxation techniques...

How many calories should a woman take per day?

Ever wondered how much calories we require per day? Well, according to this article women my age should have between 1200-1600 calories. But then again, how do we watch what we eat and how many calories per food item? This requires some research...ok found one chart:

"Caloric intake is a fact of life that many people do not pay attention to. Those who work out or are trying to lose weight usually do count calories and keep a close eye on their intake. There are varying factors to determine how many calories you should intake daily to remain healthy, such as age, weight, and amount of physical activity.

On average, a woman needs about 2,000 calories everyday. However, those who work out can intake more, adding around 250 calories a day, as those are burned while exercising. Adding more than this while exercising will counter what you are trying to achieve. Women who are pregnant or breastfeeding should intake a larger number of calories, closer to 2,200. If you are trying to lose weight or size, eating a lower number of calories is best for you, but no less than 1,200. The reverse is also true: if you are trying to gain weight, your caloric intake should be higher. Your age can vary your caloric intake as well.

Typically, younger women, usually more active, require more calories each day to keep healthy, about 2,200. Teenage girls require the most calories daily because of their growing bodies. Active teenagers require 500-600 more calories than the average teenager. Older women, most of whom are less active, require fewer calories each day, around 1,600. These numbers are averages and for the typical person. Always talk to your doctor before starting an exercise plan or diet, and ask him what your caloric intake should be".


Here is a calorie counter if you need one.

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Does playing sports and eating a healthy diet help you live longer?

"Many of us know that a good diet and exercise can help us live longer, healthier lives. It is also true that playing sports does the same. This is because when you play sports, you are more active. Moving with speed and purpose will help increase your heart rate, as well as improve your lung capacity. Even sports like golf are helpful because of all the walking required. The running and jumping that many sports require help us with our overall body conditioning, and any sport that requires strength training is also great. It has been shown that players also have a much easier time fighting diseases such as cardiovascular problems, as well as diabetes. There has also been a correlation between sports and lower risks of cancer. One last advantage of playing sports is the emotional benefits. We learn about teamwork, friendship, and work ethic by working together towards a common goal. These skills not only help while playing sports, but also in other areas of our lives. Eating foods like broccoli, which contains anti-carcinogens; oily fish, which help lower cholesterol and prevents strokes and blood clots; and onions which not only help protect from cancer, but also help protect you from breathing conditions such as asthma, will help you live longer. Combining a good diet with playing sports, of any sort, will improve your overall health and increase your chances of living to a great, ripe old age".

Having read this article reminds me of the need to be active once again in sports and eating healthily. As I age, aches and pains increase and the ability to take part in active sports decrease. I do believe sports and eating healthily will help us live longer.  However, we can eat heathily, follow all kinds of meanimgful diets and foods, anti-radicals, anti-toxins, anti-cancers..the works..but all that comes to nought if we are not able to partake in active sports. I wish I could run and climb hills as I did in my younger days. But my hurtful knees and OA does not permit me. If I can manage some walking and some gardening these days, I am happy. I really hope someone will find a cure and delay ageing of the bones and have a cure for OA, gout and the works. But I know that it won't be possible in the near future. Therefore, I shall live my live to the fullest, go where I want to go and do what I want to do. Lots of places to see and the lights of the famous cities beckon to me. I hope I can live a fulfilled life before the end of my time here on earth.

To all of you who can yet walk and run...do enjoy it while it lasts, and if sports and healthy food help prolong your life, by all means, pay heed and follow the advice.
Good luck and best wishes.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Goodbye Mr 'Punch' Gunalan, Malaysia's badminton legend

I was taken by surprise with the news last Wednesday that Mr Punch Gunalan, well-known, much loved  and much respected badminton sportsman had passed away. I wasn't aware he was ill nor did I read anything about his illness. Or maybe I hadn't been reading the papers that much lately. the news reported that he was dignosed with liver cancer back in March and now after 6 months he is gone!
My sincere condolences and sympathies to his wife, son and family members on his untimely demise.

I grew up admiring Mr Punch Gunalan's badminton prowess. Back in the 70's and 80's then, Malaysia was indeed a powerhouse in badminton. And now after 4 decades, badminton still remain the sport to be reckoned with. Young or old, badminton seems to be the number one sport in the country. Punch Gunalan as he was sportingly called was indeed so popular and famous back then, that his posters adorn many a girl's bedroom along side that of Rudy Hartono and Lim Swie King. I am indeed saddened by his departure, for his role in promoting sports during his time both as a player and in the IBF, then WBF has been overwhelming.

I managed to visit his wake yesterday and couldn't help but notice so many wreaths adorning the outisde of his house. He was loved by many and from the many messages I read both on the wreaths and in the message book, many loved and will miss him. As I conveyed my condolences to his widow and son, I felt a sense of regret for not knowing him as a person for he was described by many as understanding, caring, friendly and  a great proponent of badminton.

So many young men and women players passed through his hands and they too remember him. May I also extend my condolences to them on their loss, as his widow said, "we have all lost a friend".
In the midst of celebrating our silver medal won at the rceent Olympics by Dato' Lee Chong Wei, let us also remember other badminton greats who have also passed on and who remain with us.

Let us wish all badminton supporters, players and associations/club members well, for less we forget the man and only focus on the game and winning the elusive Olympic gold medal!

To all, Malaysia once again have lost one of its greatest sportsmen, may his legend live on in the hearts of many, may his family find peace and comfort in knowing that he was well loved and remembered by everyone.

Rest in Peace, Mr Punch Gunalan.


Its that time of year again.

Here's wishing all Muslim friends and family a very Happy Selamat Hari Raya Maaf Zahir dan Batin.
May you have great enjoyment and happiness as you spend the festive season with all your loved ones.
May you be safe in  your travels as well.

To all other friends of different religions, have a happy holiday and do visit your Muslim friends and make the occasion a festive and fun one.

Selamat Hari Raya
Maaf Zahir dan Batin.