Tag Archives: health

In this post I am going to talk specfically about osteoarthritis.  I need to state there is no cure for osteoarthritis and whilst no single gene found has been found which indicates osteoarthritis there is research which shows a genetic factor.  There is also an occupational factor so if you have a heavy physical work load then that is a risk. Along with the following

  • kneeling
  • regular stair climbing,
  • crawling
  • bending
  • whole body vibration
  • repetitive movements.

Now that list may make you roll your eyes as most of them (apart from crawling!) are part of daily life but there are things that might be able to help slow down the process.

...continue reading

Last week I ordered a butternut squash on my online shopping and this 1.7kg behmouth turned up!  I had planned having it roasted with chicken but it was so big I decided to turn it into a soup for lunch. It is an excellent source of vitamin A and C and good source of vitamin E. Surprisingly enough it is also a source of Omega 3 and Omega 6 fatty acids (not as much as fish or flaxseed but if you are not taking a supplement every little helps)

  1. Turn on oven. Mine is a fan one and appears to have nuclear tendencies but 170 would probably be good.
  2. Cut squash in half lengthways.
  3. Mix 2 tablespooons of olive oil or coconut oil with 1 teaspoon of garlic (I am very lazy and use jar garlic, if you are not then I would crush about 2 cloves)
  4. Baste the tops of the squash with the oil
  5. Add a sprig of rosemary and sprinkle paprika all over
  6. Butternut Squash Soup - Whole Life Fitness

  7. Bake for about 45 minutes  or until a knife goes in easily, again oven dependent.
  8. Boil a pint of chicken stock, if you have home made it will taste better (after having a roast just boil the carcass with some water for a couple of hours, strain and then freeze)
  9. Remove the rosemary (I find it too overpowering)
  10. Butternut Squash Soup - Whole Life Fitness

  11. Scrap all the squash into the boiling chicken stock and simmer for about 20minutes.
  12. Butternut Squash Soup Farnham

  13. Use a handblender to blend the ingredients of the saucepan and there you go gorgeous butternut squash soup with a little bit of a kick from the paprika.

P.S I love coconut so if you want add roughly 50g coconut cream to the pint of chicken stock. Also test whilst the soup is cooking and add more paprika/chill if you want a real kick.


Very important muscles to exercise as we age are the upper back muscles to prevent that hunched over look where the chest muscles are too tight and the upper back muscles are weak.  Exercises that don't use any equipment to work the upper back aren't thick on the ground, however there are a couple.  If you can't safely get up and down from the floor (which this exercise requires) then please comment and I will post another exercise that you can do.

The (snazzily named) Y-T-I raises target the muscles of your upper back that stabilize your shoulder blades  and strengthen your shoulder muscles.

Y Raise

  1. Lie facedown on the floor with your arms resting on the floor above your head, completely straight and at a 30-degree angle to your body, so your body forms a Y shape.
  2. Your palms should be facing each other so that the thumbs point up (as if you were doing an ok sign!)
  3. Raise your arms as high as you comfortably can, concentrate on your upper back doing this work and not your arms.

 T Raise

  1. Still lying facedown move your arms so that they're out to your sides—perpendicular to your body.
  2. Your thumbs should be still pointing upwards with palms now facing forwards.
  3. Raise your arms as high as you comfortably can, concentrate on your upper back doing this work and not your arms.

I Raise

  1. Still lying facedown move your arms so that your body forms a straight line from your feet to your fingertips.
  2. Like with the Y your palms should be facing each other  with your thumbs pointing up.
  3. Raise your arms as high as you comfortably can,  concentrate on your upper back doing this work and not your arms.

Do 10 reps of each Y, T and I  (immediately after one another) and then rest for 1 minute before doing another 10 reps of each exercise.

For a no equipment required lower back and core exercise please see the following article I wrote which details both Bird Dog (great name!) and the plank.

Before starting any new exercise program please check with your doctor and clear any exercise changes with them

If you have any questions on this article, or any questions about exercise and the over-50s please post a comment. By subscribing to this blog you will be informed of any new articles. You will not receive any spam email.



Last week I bought a magazine called Glamour. Now I gave up buying women magazines about a year ago and both my bank balance and my attitude towards my body has thanked me. However this issue had a free nail polish and I do love nail polish. Whilst flicking through the magazine I came across this bit of advice:

"I prefer to keep the weights low" (the "celebrity" personal trainer advocates 3lbs) which apparently will "create more of a woman's body - sensual and sexy, but strong" ...continue reading

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COPD and Exercise

COPD is Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease and is a combination of chronic bronchitis and emphysema. People with COPD find it difficult to breath.  It is predicted to become third leading cause of death by 2030 and is not curable. However just because you have COPD doesn't mean you shouldn't exercise.

Both cardiovascular and weight-bearing exercises are to be encouraged for those with COPD with benefits such as

  • increased cardiovascular function
  • decrease in breathlessness
  • increased muscular strength
  • improved posture

The aim of the physical activity undertaken should be to improve the  COPD sufferers quality of life. It has been shown that those with COPD who do participate in regular physical activity have a lower risk of being admitted to hospital with associated problems.

For more information about COPD and exercise

British Lung Foundation

The COPD Foundation - Exercise for someone with COPD


World Chronic Pulmonary Disease Day - WHO media centre

Research into Exercise training in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease

Before starting any new exercise program please check with your doctor and clear any exercise changes with them. Moderate to severe COPD programmes should be done by a pulmonary rehabilitation team.