I’ve never entirely gotten used to the pace of London. Everyone here is rushing to the next thing on a to-do list that never stops growing but rarely features any time for themselves. This might be good for careers but it’s not so good for your health – and without that, what’s the point?
As West London Physiotherapy’s in-house functional trainer, I see a lot of overworked Londoners, from web developers locked to their screens morning and night to heads of global corporations who can never switch off. But no matter how busy you are, I can make you healthier and happier (and if you must make it about work, you’ll work better too).
Toxic City Lifestyles
Your typical professional is glued to their desk for most of the day with their back hunched and their shoulders forward. This is what we call a flexion dominant position and it causes far more health problems than you may expect, with everything from digestion and breathing hindered alongside the typical aches and pains that go with a desk job.
What you put inside your body is just as important as what you do with it. Quick and easy fast food might let you get back to your desk quicker but what you gain in convenience is lost to calories and fat. Then instead of water you’ll wash it down five coffees a day to stay focused as well as dangerously dehydrated.
When the day ends it’s down to the pub, where networking inevitably involves drinking down more calories and more dehydration. Then perhaps you’ll steal four hours of sleep before doing it all over again.
Breaking Bad Habits
Hydration, diet, movement and rest. Those are the four things you must focus on if you want to be healthy. Drinking three litres of water a day, eating a balanced diet, moving as much as possible and getting a full night’s sleep can totally transform the health and happiness of your typical London worker.
You might not see them but your day is filled with chances to get moving. Replace the drive to work with walking or cycling, then when you get to the office use the stairs instead of the escalator. If you’re taking a call, use that time to pace around a bit, then at lunch, don’t go to the place on the corner, walk a few blocks to somewhere (hopefully) healthier.
If you must go down to the pub replace beer and spirits with a glass of red wine, which is lower in calories, or sparkling water, which has none at all. Then when it’s finally the weekend, go for a hike or play in the park with your kids, don’t just slump in front of the TV.
Exercising Your Demons
Though I can help people achieve a desired body image, my focus is health based rather than aesthetic. Commercial gyms and heavily advertised exercise programmes have made fitness seem far more complicated than it really is. Being healthy doesn’t need all that much work but it does need dedication.
On top of hydration, diet, movement and rest, I give my clients two sets of ten minute stretches, one for when they wake up and one just before bed. These stretches lengthen and strengthen parts of your body that are knotted up from being stuck sitting all day. Combine this with least an hour a week with me and your body will become lighter, stronger and more capable.
The best thing about working at WLP is that world class physiotherapists are literally upstairs. If we discover a joint is hurting more than it should then they can quickly diagnose whether there are underlying structural problems and prescribe specific exercises to work on them.
Joining a gym and jumping in head first is a shortcut to injury, so no matter what exercise you take on make sure you consult with a physiotherapist first. Call West London Physiotherapy today to book your consultation.
For any other questions regarding this topic please do not hesitate to contact West London Physio on 0207 937 1628 or email firstname.lastname@example.org