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ArtVo returns with brand new art
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Proposed changes to the Owners’ Corporation Act
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The Silly Season
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Health and Wellbeing - April 2014

03 Apr 2014

Blood Pressure Screening

When was the last time you had your blood pressure taken? Do you know what blood pressure measures and what is a healthy range?

Blood pressure screening is a simple and fast way to measure the health and effective condition and operation of your circulatory system (heart and blood vessels). A healthy target for blood pressure is 120/80. Blood pressure can be tested by health professionals of all types, including your personal trainer or staff at your local fitness centre. Many pharmacists across the country also offer free blood pressure checks (visit http://www.strokefoundation.com.au for locations).

While exercise is well-known as an activity that helps reduce blood pressure and improves circulatory system health, a reading outside of a normal range normally results in a recommendation to visit your GP for further investigation as to cause and solution. Other solutions often involve modifications to eating patterns and nutritional intake.

The Stroke Foundation of Australia has a number of public events to increase awareness of Stroke and the associated risk factors. April 2  is the Nation’s Biggest Blood Pressure Check. Later in the year, Know Your Numbers is another campaign driven by the Stroke Foundation. Last year more than 400 Docklanders were tested at the YMCA Docklands Health Clubs.

Outdoor Exercise is Great!

At a recent Docklands Community Forum, the issue of increasing outdoor exercise and sporting activities within Docklands was raised, and a brief debate followed about whether it was a good thing or not. Being a health and wellness person, of course I think this is a wonderful part about living in Docklands. Unlike most of the CBD, we have front door access to great and well-connected bike paths for cycle commuting, walking and jogging, with a safe division from cars and traffic. We also have attractive, clean and well-managed open spaces for all types of activities, whether it be sitting quietly by yourself, working out vigorously with your colleagues or playing a competitive sports game on the courts.

So what could be wrong with this scenario, when you consider that there is a drastic increase in lifestyle diseases like diabetes, stroke and obesity? It’s all about the consideration of all users. If you are a park or bike path user, consider how your activities might impact the safety and enjoyment of the space for others. If you do engage a trainer to exercise in public space, make sure the company or individual has professional insurance, and if the group is larger than six, they must have a permit to conduct the activities.

Health Benefits of Running

Running is one of the most portable and least expensive forms of exercise for participants. You can run by yourself if you prefer solitary types of exercise, or you can run with friends or a group if you prefer. Aside from investing in a good pair of runners and some comfortable running clothes (loose fitting, breathable material), the cost of participation is low.

If running is one of best forms of exercise, then why don’t more people get out and run? The reason is because it is hard work. But like most kinds of hard work, it pays off. Let me clarify. When I say that it is hard, I mean to it’s hard to get started. Once you find your rhythm and develop a routine, running becomes enjoyable.

So if you are just starting out, first get clearance from your doctor to run. Then follow these tips to make sure your there is longevity in your career as a runner!

  • Build it up – distance, time and intensity.
  • Warm up and cool down/stretch with every session
  • Drink plenty of fluids - before, during and after
  • Vary the workouts – don’t run every day
  • Plan your course – think about the environment, surface, safety, pollution.
  • Track your progress – you will improve, so your progress will motivate you to continue

Why run anyway?

  • Build stronger bones
  • Strengthen muscles
  •  Improve fitness
  •  Maintain a healthy weight

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