As the infamous game of thrones quote goes, “Brace yourselves, winter is coming”, and if you’re reading this in Canberra you know that you’ll be feeling it worse than most Australians.
Your nips will be rock hard before you know it, and with that, comes the risk of catching the flu and life coming to a stand still for a week.
I’m pretty sure no one wants to get sick, so let’s talk strategy on avoiding it before the colder temperatures swoop in.
- If travelling, seek extra rest.
If you go for a long drive or even a flight on the weekend, then make sure you get to bed extra early when you return. Even in the warmer season when the flu is less common, this can creep up on people because it’s underestimated how much energy travelling takes out of you. Keeping your eyes on the road for six hours is something you need to recover from. Get to bed early on the Sunday when you get back before the work week starts again.
- Have fruit and veg daily
Especially ginger and garlic. The easiest way to maintain daily fruit and veg is to blend juices and smoothies so it’s done quicker if you’re time poor, and you’ll get better taste by mixing what would usually be more bland.
- Move daily
‘N.E.A.T’ stands for Non-Exercise Active Thermogenesis. This contributes to your metabolism. It basically means things like walking the dog, walking from the car to the workplace or around the lake with friends. Things that aren’t considered exercise are forms of ‘N.E.A.T’. See if you can add any extra NEAT every day. Even if it’s just walking around your street when you go out the front door to take the rubbish out. Small habits repeated daily build momentum for huge success in anything.
- Get up in nature’s grill
You don’t have to become a tree hugger (whatever that is), just aim to be around an environment that has alot of them around. A “non-artificial” environment, like a bush walk. Tree’s provide airborne chemicals that can improve the immune system and lower stress.
This one is great for getting extra rest when you need it, which means the flu is closer to getting you potentially. Audio guided meditations are super easy to follow without getting distracted like most people claim is the reason they don’t meditate. If you find your head slumping forward when meditating, it means that your mind and body needed extra rest. “1 giant mind” is a fantastic app that is free to download. Search the app store on your smart phone or android should also have the largely popular “Headspace”. These are both guided meditations best for beginners.
- Learn the Wim Hof breathing technique
The man you see above (Wim Hof) has scientifically proven that by learning his breathing technique, you are able to control your immune system. A scientific experiment was conducted in which he was injected with the common cold whilst being monitored in a laboratory, and within fifteen minutes the symptoms of fever and head aches were gone. He now teaches this to every day people with great success also. We have taught this in our facility to help our members as well as the alcohol and drug rehabilitation clinic that we do volunteer work with. Everyone claims to feel better afterwards. Here is a shot below of a few of our guys giving it a go.
Here is a brief breakdown:
- Sit upright in a comfortable position or lie on your back
- Inhale through your abdomen first, feeling it expand, followed by filling the chest with your deepest breath
- Take a normal exhale, this shouldn’t be a full exhale
- Continue up to fifty times
- On the final exhale, stop breathing.
- Hold this for as long as you can with your eyes closed
- Time this
- When you need your next breath, inhale as deeply as possible and hold for fifteen seconds.
- This should be repeated a few times for best effects.
You can learn more by researching Wim Hof. He has done many podcasts explaining the science behind it all.
- Laugh and smile
It really is that simple. When our body language does positive things, our mind has no choice but to match our physiology, thus reducing stress and improving your immune system.
- Be grateful
Gratitude should be practiced for many reasons. When we remember what we have to be thankful for, the brain releases dopamine to feel good, stress less and keep the immune system strong. It also makes life easier when things don’t go how you had planned.
- Avoid negative people
If they don’t give you the flu, they sure as hell won’t make you feel any better haha. Ain’t nobody got time fo’ that!
Hang around people who drag you up.
Like everyone at our gym ;).
Please share with someone who this might help.
Founder of EMB Strategies,