Monday, February 17, 2014

I smell change

Do you ever get homesick but you are actually home? I used to get it whenever I went to visit my parents back in Copenhagen while living in Canada. The first night was always so weird because I was soooo excited to be home but at the same time I felt weirdly homesick! It took me a few years to realise that I wasn't actually homesick but that it was a change in place that gave me an unfamiliar kind of feeling. For instance, when I move homes, I feel homesick in my new place for about the first week, I feel sad to have left my old apartment even though I am happy being in my new apartment. Instead of calling it being homesick I now call it change-sadness

We started getting rid of a few things today and it was officially the first day of a lot of changes that are soon to be coming our way.
Saying good-bye to the old farty couch, other smaller pieces of furniture that has served us so well and seeing a much nicer (!) living room made me get a glimpse of what excitement is in store for us. It is so freeing getting rid of stuff, throwing stuff out that you don't need but you keep thinking you might need it one day. My advice? Get rid of it! If you haven't used, worn or thought of it the past few months, chances are you will forget about it pretty easily just as well! 
We are moving to Singapore end of August and we are only taking the bare essentials with us: clothes, paintings and some cooking supplies. 
Clean slate! 

Even though I am bursting with tingly excitement for our new life and adventures I know that it will be accompanied by the change-sadness just as much... siiiigh.

On another note: first week of exams DONE and now its time to celebrate with some cake! 

Bananalicious cake! 

What you need:
5 medium super ripe bananas
6 TBSP Oil (coconut, olive, sunflower)
6 TBSP Sweetener (maple syrup, honey)
1/4 cup Choice of milk

2 Cups flower your choice
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1 Cup of chopped nuts your choice
3/4 cups chopped dark chocolate (optional)
1/2 tsp salt

What you do:
Heat oven to 200 Degrees Celsius, get out your muffin pan, cake pan whatever your heart desires (I also sometimes use my brownie pan)
Mix the wet ingredients together (with or without blender, just mix it really well)
Mix all the dry ingredients well
Mix the two together and pour into cake dish and bake for about an hour, check it every once in a while, sometimes it is done quicker!

Guten Appetit!!!

(Thanks to for this recipe, it is my go to recipe for a quick and delicious cake!)

Sunday, February 02, 2014

Much ado about exercise

We know that forming a healthy lifestyle is about forming new habits. To form new habits you have to repeatedly do something. To repeatedly do something you have to actually do it. And to do it you have to get your mind right. Over and over and over again. It can be tough but it can also be a wonderful experience of a new life and creativity.

My mind was challenged this past week about how much the general public exercise. If its enough, if it is not enough. 
As a (ALMOST AAAALMOST, so close) Physiotherapist we see people that don't exercise enough on a daily basis. Of course there are exceptions (especially if you work as a sports-physiotherapist) but on a daily basis, on a normal day, I saw patients who did not exercise. 
In my first encounter with a patient one of my top questions is 'do you exercise?'. People have answered that question in a variety of ways, most elderly humans always commented on their school days (which at this point is a good 40-60 years ago! lol). But on a daily basis they didn't do anything. Again, there were exceptions that went to their gymnastic classes once/twice a week for the past 40 years but I remember these stories SO well, that they unfortunately were only about a dozen. 
Now, what happened and what is normal? I had a great conversation with my friend the other day about different views on what is a normal exercise 'routine' and what is too much or too little and I really thought about it for a while... 

Let's take a desk job for instance, its a common thing to work in an office for 8-9 hours a day, mainly sitting on a chair.
We are animals, which animal sits 8 hours a day? Jaaaa, okay, a sloth is also an animal and it sleeps all day, I get it. BUT, my point being, I don't believe we are meant to live sitting on a chair all day. 
If you look back 150 years ago, people didn't have the privilege of getting their food as easily and readily as we do here in Germany in 2014. If I am hungry, I just walk 400 meters and buy some groceries, go home and eat. Back in the day, we had to use our bodies a lot more to gather our groceries. Regardless if its better this way or the old way, it is how it is. If you sit most of the day, then thats how it is but your body is in a similar position for 8-9 hours a day, 5 days a week- is 30 minutes a day of moderate exercise a lot for someone who sits 8 hours a day? In my (aaalmost!!!) professional opinion I think 30-60 minutes of moderate exercise a day is an absolute must

A lot of the time it's also about who you surround yourself with. If you hang out with people who don't exercise then you think that is normal. If you surround yourself with people who exercise on a daily basis and don't think of it as being something out of the ordinary then you soon realise that that is your reality.

Professional athletes work out about 8 hrs on a daily basis and they seem to be doing just fine! Why can't we 'normal' people do 30 minutes of brisk walking in a day of 13 hours of being awake? 

I know, I seem to repeat myself a lot on this topic but I will keep repeating myself as long as there are people who need to hear it. As an (almost!) physiotherapist I do think it is my duty to remind you how important it is to move. MOVE! MOOOOOOVE! 
An exercise a day keeps insanity away :D

BTW, when I speak of moderate exercise I mean working up a sweat once a day. Let it be a fast paced walk, a light jog, a bike ride, a dance party in your bedroom, anything that gets your heart rate out of its comfort zone. It gets your blood pumping more oxygen through your body, gets your mind right and most importantly your body gets to experience a different position than sitting on a chair. Remember, your bones and your joints live off your muscles being moved! 

Turn that lazy sunday into a healthy sunday!
Sincerely, your sweaty friend Nada