It’s officially the end of the first week of 2019, how are your resolutions going? To those who included staying fit and being more health-conscious in their lists, I’m looking at you. Don’t worry, I’m not here to pressure you or scold you, but rather to push you on. Whether you’ve already encountered a setback on your wellness goals or not, don’t give up! It’s a good thing you’re doing and we want nothing more for you but to achieve your goals and shine this 2019. I’m sure you’ve already done your research and made a game plan, but just in case, here are new fitness trends you might be interested to try this year, too. From being more chill in your sweat sessions, to new wellness methods like “cold-bath therapy,” check out which of these you think can work for you.
We’ve been introduced to clean eating the past few years, but it looks like 2019 is when we finally get acquainted with the concept of clean sleeping. As Glamour UK noted, this year is when we will see sleeping as more than just “a pastime of the lazy” but rather, “a fundamental pillar of overall health.” Thus, the focus will be on a healthy sleep regimen, including regular bedtimes and less screen-time. Already, there are medical wellness clinics that offer a sleep program. Lanserhof clinic in Europe, for instance, offers smart, temperature regulating beds, blue filter glasses to block any light disruption to our natural body clock, and advanced diagnostic tools.
For the longest time, HIIT or high intensity interval training, aka a hardcore sweat session, has been the most popular in the workout game. But now, there is a less aggressive approach. According to Vogue UK, “While exercise is known for boosting serotonin and releasing endorphins, it also spikes cortisol, the stress hormone—especially during HIIT.” It seems experts are now becoming more evaluative of cortisol. It is considered catabolic because it breaks down tissue, so they say too much of it can be a bad thing. The focus now is keeping cortisol stable. Some argue this can be achieved by having shorter workout sessions, or by changing up the routine. Lee Mullins, founder of the Workshop Gymnasium, said, “We are now creating training sessions that are not high-intensity from start to finish. We use smarter programming and tools that are able to monitor if an individual has recovered enough to train.”
Cold is the new, hot thing this year (excuse the oxymoron) in health and wellness. More and more people are now down to trying out cryotherapy or literally “cold therapy” which is basically any treatment that involves the use of freezing or near-freezing temperatures (such as sitting in an ice-cold tank). Though not yet proven, they believe it can improve mental and physical health and even prolong life. Fun fact: Spotify even reported that there has been growth in the number of “ice bath-themed playlists” and the top songs in these are—surprise, surprise—Vanilla Ice’s “Ice Ice Baby” and Foreigner’s “Cold As Ice.”
In workouts too, cold gyms are becoming more popular. “Turns out heat makes you fatigue faster and you’ll burn more calories and fat as your body tries to warm itself,” Fashion Magazine wrote. “It’s an abundance of heat, even in ambient temperatures, that gets in the way of a great workout,” explained Jimmy T. Martin, co-founder of NY-based freezing fitness space, Brrrn.
CBD is the breakout natural ingredient this year, not just in beauty products, but for health and wellness too. Forbes notes that we will see CBD products almost everywhere this year, “bringing us into a new era of plant-based wellness.” The wonder ingredient is already known for exhibiting anti-inflammatory, anti-pain, anti-seizure, and anti-anxiety properties, just to name a few). But beyond that, “The science of the endocannabinoid system explains why hemp oil actually works,” Mind Body Green wrote. “It might even explain why so many of us suffer from anxiety, inflammation, and pain in the first place. In fact, much like the microbiome, the endocannabinoid system has been shown to play a role in anything from anxiety and pain to fertility, mood, and even our weight.”
Moreover, according to Martin A. Lee, the director of Project CBD and the author of Smoke Signals, “The endocannabinoid system is involved in regulating most physiological processes that have been studied: immune function, pain perception, glucose metabolism, blood pressure, bone density, intestinal fortitude, sleep, mood, memory, neuroplasticity, and much more. It’s the reason cannabis is such a versatile medicine that can help so many conditions.” Wonder ingredient, indeed.
Yup, it’s like Netflix, but for working out. This new trend basically allows you to have the convenience of an instructor-led workout accessible no matter where you are. This is especially perfect for those who regularly travel, or prefer to stay at home rather than join a gym or physical classes. As with everything, it has its perks and disadvantages. While it affords you the comfort of working out according to your schedule, it also means you don’t have professional guidance, so really, discipline and consistency here is key. Curious if it works out for you? Take this advice from Stephanie Mansour of NBC News: “I’d recommend trying a streaming workout for a month, and track how often you use it. Then take the amount you paid for the subscription for the streaming workouts, and divide it out into how many workouts you actually did. Then decide if it’s financially worth it to you.” Celebrity trainer Joey Thurman also adds that it may be worth scheduling a session or two with a personal trainer in person first to get instruction on proper technique. “All in all,” he says, “If it’s a reputable source, trainer, coach and company, you should be fine.”
Art by Marian Hukom
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