Sports or Snow? I'm Choosing Both!

Last year we enjoyed neither the wintery weather, neither the frost nor cold temperatures. Even though the new year has just started, we already have been given loads of snow - it's easy to tell that 2021 will be better than the last year was! All we want to do now is run outside, make snow angels, snow fight, and go with the sledges from hills… 

However, we must not forget the seriousness of the outgoing situation and quarantine restrictions, so the only way to truly enjoy the winter is to do it safely. We are not only talking about maintaining a safe distance from other people but also taking care of yourself before going outside and once returned into a closed environment. As national lockdown turned our lives upside down, wintertime is a perfect season to get oneself back together and start exercising! The only question is how we are supposed to do it? Is it possible to harmonize both sports and winter?

When to Play Sports? – Winter vs. Other Seasons

No doubt, for some people winter is the most unlikeable season of the year and, in this case, their emotions are based on wintery weather conditions – wind, snowfall, cold, frost, etc. Here at Biomedicanna, we believe there is no such thing as bad weather – only failure to prepare for it. There is no need to get angry about winter as it is always better to invest in quality warm clothing: parka, boots, gloves, scarf, thermal clothes, etc. Winter clothing helps to solve the problem above, allows to enjoy the season, and exercise without the fear of getting cold.

If we compare exercising in winter with activities at other seasons, most people will say that they can only exercise at summertime when the sun goes down. They have such opinions because the temperature is sometimes too hot to handle. Summer is dangerous for both the amateurs and professional athletes as they fall to the risk of getting sunburnt or fainting. Even though this may seem as not a problem at all, people who choose outdoor activities at summer are often irritated by mosquitos and other insects; therefore, people with severe allergies better play sports as far from such places as possible. Exercising in both spring and autumn is also far from perfect conditions. These seasons are characterized by heavy rainfalls, so sometimes running tracks and trails may be flooded and impenetrable.

Here winter wins the fight with other seasons as the most unlikeable weather conditions can quickly be turned into a perfect sports environment. One only need to show some creativity and prepare for weather and terrain changes in advance.

Where to Exercise? – Indoor vs. Outdoor

The goal to start exercising is probably one of the most popular New Year goals of all time – sadly, it means starting to exercise despite winter conditions. At this time of the year, indoor places are the only help allowing us comfortably play sports and keep a good shape. One can always exercise at home – now it’s quite easy to turn an unused room into a private gym but, of course, a yoga mat in the middle of the living room is still a great idea. For those who associate the good physical form with professional sports equipment, the gym is true salvation. Here for considerably low monthly membership price one can use various exercise equipment, relax in swimming pools or saunas, and get valuable advice from professional coaches. Because we all had spent an entire year at home, indoor exercising at this moment may not be the best idea. As all of the gyms and sports centres are closed, outdoor exercising is the best way to get out of this gloomy reality. 

Outdoor activities and sports have more advantages than one may think of – exercising in the fresh air does not cost anything! There are plenty of community sports courts, beautiful trails and parks where you may find out that walking is the best type of sports out there. Moreover, some exercises do not even need special equipment, so you can exercise wherever you are! There is one aspect left to discuss; outdoor sports also help decrease exercising anxiety as no people would be uncomfortably watching you doing push-ups or sit-ups – the nature does not judge!

How to Face the Cold? – Fear vs. Protection

We now surely know that winter is the best time for outdoor activities and exercising, yet no one at that time is protected from sport-related traumas and other dangers. Firstly, one has to prepare to face the cold temperature. If a person fails to dress warmly, he/she risks of having their body temperature fall below 35 degrees Celsius. Such condition is called Hypothermia; one's organs start to shut down, a person starts shivering, later turn drowsy and loses consciousness. Sadly, all of the symptoms lead to a fatal ending. 

It is considerably easy to protect ourselves from the cold – we only need warm clothing and waterproof footwear; the latter is essential as frozen limbs often mean amputation. Despite being able to cover ourselves from head to toe, our face is often left uncovered. Face skin is delicate and sensitive and, depending on various skin types, it can react to cold weather conditions differently. In this case, we encourage everyone to add rich face cream to one's cosmetics bag during wintertime. Mentioned cream creates a protective layer and does not allow the skin to completely dry out. Besides, the product provides excellent antioxidant protection and have anti-inflammatory properties. 

How to Stay on Feet? – Slip vs. Grip

As soon as the first snow falls, people can’t seem to stay on their feet – as if they have forgotten how to keep the balance! Soon A&E Hospital departments fill will poor ones, who have stepped on icy surfaces, slipped, and awkwardly landed. While lucky ones experience severe muscle strains, not so lucky ones have broken bones. Indeed, slip and fall accidents are not only very common but also costly; it takes at least two months for a broken bone to heal completely. Such trauma means you will have to wait another year to enjoy winter, but – hey! – use this time wisely, plan and prepare for next year winter adventures!

The main reason for these injuries is wrongly chosen footwear; all winter boots must provide its wearer better traction and grip, so one does not slip and fall. While it is relatively easy to watch where are you going while walking, it’s several times harder to do that while playing sports – here you must react to various environment changes very quickly. Fresh snow can also hide slippery ice surface underneath; therefore, to protect oneself from falls, he/she must do both wear good winter shoes and be attentive. However, unfortunate situations are always just around the corner – do not hesitate to go to the hospital if your slip and fall accident was more of a serious one. Yet if you simply slipped and bruised your skin, try using CBD Cooling Gel, which also helps relax tense muscles and relieves soreness!

We have familiarized you with ways to protect yourself from harsh winter conditions - now you are officially allowed to enjoy winter and exercise outdoors like professional. Here at Biomedicanna, we love winter, and more than that we love being healthy and doing sports – every day we successfully connect these two passions and enjoy playing various outdoor winter games, which serve as serious full-body workouts. Now we challenge you and your friends to try at least a few winter activities that our team have tried and recommend!

Stay safe and enjoy snow while we can!

Mr Pain and His sister Anxiety

“One way to break up any kind of tension is good deep breathing.”

Byron Nelson

If Pain had a gender it would definitely be masculine. Just because…

 And why not? All of us have felt Him, this stingy, cracking life’s side-effect that just has enough Ego to be a part of your existence, whether it be after an intense workout, a performance, or even an exam.

He comes uninvited,

He comes and goes. Whenever He wishes!

Seems no one can stop Him…

Except!... You know one His weakness…

His weakness is simple, the one He’d be nothing without, -

Her name is Anxiety.  

Whatever that means…

But do be aware – She’s all for what Pain exists.

Here’s a little rhyme that came too naturally not to share. With this, a huge article joined along, all in honour of Him - the Mr. Pain. And of course, His sister...

Life is tense! That’s why Buddhists and Tibetan monks have their practices to end the suffering and get rid of all illusions in our world, including Pain.  

Unless you are a Tibetan monk, physical Pain, while in company of his great “sister” Anxiety must have visited you at least once before a big test, performance, or a public speaking.

However, some people experience it more than others. Based on global statistics it is estimated that 264 million adults around the globe experience Anxiety in their life. It is thought to be a psychological disorder, but it involves many systems of the body. Anxiety is a true chameleon and is called a “somatic” condition: meaning it is typically brought on and made worse not by any external source (for example a virus), but by our internal psychological and physiological functioning.

One way or another, along with Her almost always comes Mr. Pain. Therefore conversations about chronic painful problems routinely turn into conversations about Anxiety and it often ends up at the chicken-and-egg question: does Anxiety cause the Pain, or is the Pain causing the Anxiety?

Hint: it’s both.

Chronic Pain is extremely common and can be both a cause and consequence of Anxiety — sometimes equally, sometimes slanted much more one way than the other, but each always influencing the other to some degree. For many people with both Anxiety and Pain, solving the Pain is the best possible treatment for the Anxiety. Others must solve both at once. And a few will find that Pain is just one of many ways meaning that they are haunted by Anxiety demons.

How works the Anxiety = Pain Phenomenon?

The Anxiety causes our natural stress response to be constantly activated, and that our muscles contract as part of our stress response. When we experience Anxiety, our neuromuscular system never gets a chance to recover or return to normal. Our heart rate remains elevated and our muscles retain a higher than normal level of tension.  

So when our muscles are constantly contracted, our cells are forced to create energy for our muscles through the process of anaerobic metabolism. In this process, glucose is synthesized into adenosine triphosphate (ATP) without the help of oxygen, and lactic acid is produced as waste.

Lactic acid is often blamed for muscle soreness, but our body quickly breaks down lactic acid into lactate and hydrogen ions. A build-up of hydrogen ions, which activate our pain receptors, is likely the cause of the dull ache and burning sensation we feel in our muscles during strenuous exercise.

And a build - up of lactate is linked to Anxiety. Not surprisingly, studies show that people with Anxiety have higher levels of muscle tension, react to stress with stronger muscle contractions, and return to their normal level of tension slower.

Both Anxiety and chronic muscle tension are conditions of the nervous system in which our reactions have become habituated to the level that they are not under our conscious, voluntary control—that’s why they feel so uncontrollable and unchangeable. Unbalanced levels of hormones and neurotransmitters make Anxiety all - the - more challenging to overcome.

 Conscious intervention, retraining of the nervous system, and commitment to healthy lifestyle habits are all necessary to truly eliminate both anxiety and muscle tension.

Here we share some effective ways to eliminate the phenomena:

TRY MASSAGE THERAPY

Massage therapy is one of the best-known alternative remedies for relieving muscle tension. It addresses the muscle tissue directly and can assist the muscle in releasing its contraction, thus easing the tension. Massage might be useful in the treatment of stiff and sore muscles. There are many types of massage to choose from:

 Swedish massage is a gentle touch massage that is good for lighter forms of tension, while deep-tissue massage is effective in addressing deeper muscle tension. Either of these forms will be helpful and a great way to relieve muscle tension, tension headaches, and neck stiffness.

PRACTICE YOGA

Yoga is perhaps the oldest form of alternative muscle tension management. Some people claim the practice of yoga to be over 5,000 years old! Yoga uses techniques to lengthen, stretch and relax your muscles while simultaneously working with your breath. Yoga addresses both the physical side of muscle tension and the stress aspect as well.

TAKE HOT BATHS!

Hot water allows muscle fibers to loosen and relax, in turn relieving muscle tension. Hot baths can also be soothing to your nervous system. Healing substances can be added to the bath, such as essential oils and sea salts. Essential oils can also be added to a warm bath to assist in relaxation and release of muscle tension. But remember, - don’t stay in a warm bath too long. Be aware of the dizziness, which sometimes appear after being in a hot water for longer time.

TRY BALMS/GELS/HERBAL MEDICINE:

Try all sorts of remedies that could be applied to your body. This includes

The last, but not least of the remedies mentioned above is “balms that include CBD’’. That something worth another article or even a book, but we’ll try to make it as clear and short as possible.  

First, painkillers are not the best option to treat Pain and muscle spasms. They function via the central nervous system (CNS) by “deceiving” the mind into thinking there is no pain, while in - reality, there is. CBD really works a bit differently.

But in order to CBD to work as a muscle relaxant, cannabinoid receptors must be present at the site of muscular synapses. This is where the endocannabinoid system comes in:

If you haven’t heard of the endocannabinoid system (ECS), you need to inform yourself now. In short, it is an innate network of cannabinoids and cannabinoid receptors that occur 100% naturally in the human body. Everyone has the receptors, whether you are someone who has no idea about it, or you are herbal medicine PhD student. Another thing is also clear:

Cannabis does function well as both a neurological “painkiller” and a neuromuscular blocking agent. Not to mention, it does not have side effects as painkillers usually do; nevertheless, it isn’t addictive in any way (while this is also one of the features of some effective painkillers).

Alleviating muscle spasms at the molecular level is one of the many great uses of CBD. Thousands of people have switched over to it from prescription medications due to its high costs and dangerous side effects later.

One of the great products that we have in our stock, which you could always try in order to feel physically better and lower any discomfort and tension, e.g. muscle spasms, is CBD Cooling Gel:

Exclusive extracts come together and provide relief to overworked muscles and joints. All ingredients create a cooling synthesis to help relieve muscle soreness. The symbiosis of menthol, eucalyptus and glycerine (accompanied by the full spectrum of CBD) creates a treatment for your muscles and joints, to relief soreness and calm the body

*If interested (or you know who might be), please, check it out on our website, in the product section.

Depending on the type and severity of the muscle tension, trying each of these strategies could prove helpful in relieving muscle tension. Even though the tension is caused by Anxiety, which is a mental effect, the physical body is affected, including muscles. And while there are various approaches to soothing some of that muscle tension, it is also important to address the underlying cause, and learn to manage it.

We hope this article was helpful for you, so next time we can all unite and with ease conquer and control the one and only, Mr. Pain.

And His sister Anxiety.

If You have any question, contact us!