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How to Cure The Winter Blues

Posted by Barbara DuBois | Nov 18, 2016 4:04:47 PM

shutterstock_245624833.jpgSince the bitter cold is upon us, not to mention shorter days and longer, darker hours, I am finding the need to do more, much more, to keep my body pliable, my aerobic capacity up and every bit as important, my spirits high.

As a baby boomer, I find myself in the ranks of a generation struggling with the long term consequences of some poor health habits and simply the progressive traits of aging: stiffness, poor posture, hours of sitting before a computer on a daily basis as well as the drying of joints, bones and the stiffening of muscles. Even though I have always been fairly athletic and proudly consider myself an active adult with decent self-care habits, I find I still need professional help to assist with some health matters that I cannot accomplish on my own. The Alaska Club has provided a plethora of ways I can resolve these problematic and reoccurring health issues.

For example, we most recently purchased a special lamp to counter any effects we have witnessed in our household in winters past of Seasonal Affective Disorder. I am mindful to get out and take in some light and get some outdoor exercise as I am able, although I must admit, the lower temps we’ve been experiencing in Anchorage, dampen my inclination to get outside for long. My husband and I both know the importance of staying socially active, of drinking fluids, of eating fruits and vegetables and of taking our doctor’s recommendation seriously of ingesting a daily supplement of Vitamin D. During the workweek, it is nearly impossible to get out in the sunshine to get my dose of natural Vitamin D. Admittedly; it is difficult to even want to get out in these temps. The reward of being at the Alaska Club to me is being around cheerful staff and patrons of the Club who are all likeminded in making their health maintenance a real positive one. I look forward to going there to be around the upbeat atmosphere. This encourages me to exercise and have better spirits, the same effect as being outdoors. It’s not just good for my body to be there, it’s good for my mind.

I have also noted that in the winter my back problems are exacerbated by hours of desk-sitting. My back problems of stiffness and soreness have gotten some amazing reprieve at the hands of some of a massage therapists at The Alaska Club. Three treatments later, I discovered that many of the knots in my back had been loosened up and dissolved. I learned that a good therapists can quickly assess the location and severity of the knots, which tend to form and become stiff, resistant clumps of localized mental and physical stress. As my back pain increases due to these pressure point knotty congestions, my mental outlook declines. It was amazing how much better I felt not only that day, but for several days to come. I am grateful that I know how and where I can counter these ongoing problems. I love the fact that I can continue to work with The Alaska Club to resolve these mind/body issues unique to the dark and cold months, and can enjoy my winters every bit as much as my summers.

The Alaska Club offers a variety of mind/body membership packages for both fitness and non-fitness members, such as Membership Plus. For more information, contact our amentities at amenities@thealaskaclub.com.

membership plus.pngBarbara DuBois holds a Master of International Journalism, a Master of Science in Health Education and a Ph.D. in history specializing in health and sports. She has taught at Wayland Baptist University, Texas Tech University, the University of Alaska in Anchorage, the Matanuska Susitna College and Chukchi College. She worked as a Health Education Program Manager for Maniilaq Association in Kotzebue. She currently teaches at the Anchorage School District and U. A. A. Barbara loves to swim, bike, hike, kayak, lift weights and take various classes at the Alaska Club.

Topics: mind-body

Written by Barbara DuBois

MA Health Ed. & Int'l Journalism; PhD Sports & Health History; Texas Tech Univ. & Wayland Baptist Univ. instructor; Health Ed. Program Manager Maniilaq Assoc.

 

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