The desire to become healthier is increasing day by day.
Over the years there has been a significant increase in people becoming health conscious across the world and the UAE is not far behind.
According to a 2016 Nielsen global survey, more than two-thirds of respondents in the UAE (67%) and Saudi Arabia (66%) said they actively make dietary choices to help prevent health conditions.
But people don’t just want to eat healthier; they are also looking to lead a more healthy lifestyle.
From the gym to CrossFit to yoga or even Zumba, old and young are adopting all forms of new and different workout options to stay fit.
An increasing number of people in the UAE, for example, are opting for CrossFit, a strength and conditioning programme characterised by a mix of aerobic exercises, body-weight training and Olympic weightlifting.
But while it’s great to introduce strength and weight training into your fitness regime, you must also remember that this intensive fitness training can sometimes lead to injuries if adequate preventive measures are not taken.
“Shoulder and neck injuries are common amongst athletes” says Dr Ali Al Suwaidi, consultant orthopedic surgeon at Burjeel Hospital, Abu Dhabi.
“While wrist injuries, particularly tendinitis around the wrist joint are less frequent, occasional rupture of the Pectoralis muscle of the shoulder occurs, mostly among body builders.”
However, often people are not even aware of the damage they are doing, confusing these joint injuries with muscle cramps.
“Muscle cramp is usually localised, involving the muscles and can be due to too much stress or tension,” continues Dr Ali.
“Symptoms of muscle cramps include weakness in the localised area, coordination problems between the affected muscle and the rest of the body, when the muscle is stretched due to some physical activity the pain increases, such as a calf strain.”
“However, joint injury is the injury that happens to the articulation of two or more bones. The pain in this case is deeper and intense and can happen even if a person is at rest.”
Working out requires well-toned and strong muscles all over the body. Therefore, people who are not fit or are overweight should start slow and get the body accustomed to working out and gradually move to intensive training.
“Always warm up before you start the workout and start slowly with weights,” adds Dr Ali. “The gradual progression of mild exercises to more strenuous exercises is important. In case of weight training, start with light weights and progress gradually.”
When performing strenuous exercises like CrossFit, working closely with a sports trainer is highly recommended. But you should also make sure you are listening to your body and how it feels.
Be persistent but also give your body time to adapt to the stress it is facing during the workout. According to Dr Ali: “It’s imperative to communicate closely with your trainer as he/she has to know your weaknesses, abilities and goals.
“Know when to stop if you experience muscle or joint pain. Most importantly, do not compare yourself with others around you and overload yourself; listen to your body and how it responds.
“In case of injuries, first just rest, and use ice compressions, and take analgesics. If the pain is severe, then the limb should be immobilised. If after a few weeks the injury is not getting better, it is advisable to be examined by a physician.”
Exercising regularly along with following a vigorous and balanced diet is not only essential for a healthy living, but it can also be life-saving in the long run.
If spending hours in the gym and making basic lifestyle modifications aren’t enough for you in your quest for your desired physique, technological advancements have given us some shortcuts to get ahead in the fitness game – Cryolipolysis being one of them.
Cryolipolysis is a body contouring treatment that gets rid of cellulite and stubborn fat by exposing it to extremely low temperature.
Internationally acclaimed and approved by the CE and the FDA, the procedure is still relatively new in the region, but is said to have produced positive results for a lot of people.
Preeta Kiran Anchan, an entrepreneurial nutritionist successfully runs a wellness facility called KYP Holistic and Ladies’ Beauty Centre, which is currently one of the only two places in Dubai that provide Cryolipolysis treatment.
Preeta has 19 years of experience in nutrition planning and management, and is a prolific contributor to the fitness and health community of the UAE.
After introducing the treatment in her wellness centre a little over a year ago, it was an instant hit amongst her clients who were really satisfied with the results after undergoing the sessions.
“The treatment was introduced exactly a year and a half back and it’s doing great. Clients are extremely happy and we have a constant demand for its feel-good factor and result delivery. we have seen excellent results on skin fold fat reduction up to 30 mm in a single package,” she said.
The science behind the procedure is to freeze the cells until they are in a dormant state in the body and stay that way for a while in the body.
The frozen fat cells are then metabolized and expelled out of the body via the lymphatic system.
“The cooling technology along with the intra-ferential therapy that is applied by the zircon plates on the subcutaneous fat layer that will penetrate up to -5 degrees of temperature.
“This process leads the cells to a temporary frozen state and the effect stays till eight to ten days temporarily Frozen cells help eliminate the disintegrated fats in to the lymphatic system to be utilized and eliminated by the body with other toxins,” Preeta explained.
Exposure to such an extreme temperature may be slightly uncomfortable in the beginning and some of the side effects include feelings of numbness in the affected area and slight bruising, which usually subsides in a few days.
Even though there are no long-term side effects associated with the procedure, after this treatment there is a possibility that the fat cells may come back with a vengeance, so it is essential to follow a healthy diet plan and an active lifestyle to maintain and augment the results of the treatment.
She added: “The basics of a healthy and fit body is majorly influenced by our intake and output. Diet nutrition lifestyle pattern is a lifelong change which can be incorporated with our professional support.”
The number of sessions depend on the level of fat deposits and is given out after a thorough analysis of the body.
Preeta recommends at least six to eight sessions in order to see a perceptible difference and appears quite satisfied with the success rate of the treatment.
What: Cryolipolysis at KYP Holistic and Ladies’ Beauty Centre
Where: Al Nahda 1st, Al Mulla Plaza, Dubai
Cost: AED299 per session
Verdict: a worthwhile shortcut to try to achieve a desired physique
For more information, visit www.kypcare.com
We’re into the second week of September and already sports teams around the UAE are preparing for their opening matches of the season. It’s a dreaded time for some, and for others, it’s exciting to get back involved with a sports team after a long idle summer.
If you’re aiming to improve as a player over the next few weeks then break down the different areas of your game and your fitness before the season gets into the thick of it over the coming months.
There’s no worse feeling than being the player slumping at the back of the line during training runs or dropping balls during skill work. Make 2017 the year where you iron out those areas of your game that have previously been poor.
Every person will have different targets for the new season, but for us, here are three areas to help you get ahead of the chasing pack and have the perfect season.
Irrespective of your sport, it is important to maintain extra fitness work off the training ground. If you are back in the gym looking to build strength, for example, don’t start lifting heavy weights or you’ll increase the risk of injury.
The key for now is to build it up and do less but with intensity (this could be 8-12 repetitions of lighter weights). At this stage it is beneficial to do lighter weights as your muscles are adapting to new movements after a summer of under-use.
If you’re tired then take a day off and don’t feel guilty about it either. Rest is crucial for your muscles to recover.
This varies depending on the player but each season will bring different areas of your game that need improvement.
Whether its flexibility, speed, fitness, skill work or particular muscle groups, this is the perfect time to improve before the season gets too hectic.
If it’s flexibility you need to improve then try yoga once a week, if it’s something leg-related then include an additional leg exercise in your workout, if it’s speed then practice sprints, and if your objective is to improve upper body strength then consult a personal trainer for some advice.
This is the best time to get a head-start on teammates so use the next few weeks wisely and be honest with yourself on and off the training ground. You can’t expect to improve your weaknesses without hard work and consistent training!
If you’re looking to have a strong start to the season then begin with small changes to your diet. It’s a great feeling eating well and this will reflect in your positively around the work place and the training ground.
One small change to make is reducing the amount of sugar in your diet, whether it’s through fewer sugary drinks, chocolate, dairy products or sweets. There are other healthier foods equally as nice like fruit, dark chocolate, nuts and gluten free pasta or rice!
In addition, eat a lighter lunch as you’ll feel more productive in the work place and not hit that mid-afternoon lump that generally affects most people on a daily basis.
One thing to remember is that we all work hard so it’s important to enjoy your down-time with friends and family. Enjoy your few nights out, have your cheat meals, but if you are motivated enough to want to get a step ahead of your teammates then be willing to make some sacrifices in your daily life!