Fighting the Winter Blues

We have all had those days, letting the cold dark winter weather affect our mood and take away any productivity we may have had planned. What is this feeling? Why am I always tired and gaining weight? Some may say it’s the winter blues but in fact you may be suffering from something much more serious, Seasonal Affective Disorder.

What is Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD)? According to the Mayo Clinic, Seasonal affective disorder is a type of depression that’s related to changes in seasons. SAD begins and ends at about the same times every year. For most this is during the winter and can be caused by the lack of sunlight.

You may be wondering, how do we fix this if we can’t control the weather?! Well here are 6 simple ways to fight SAD and be at the top of our game during this winter season!

1. Eat to stimulate a better mood. A little bit of chocolate may help, but don’t go crazy! Too much candy and carbohydrates can ultimately have a negative effect on your feelings and actually encourage SAD.

2. Exercise your way to happiness. Exercise can cause a release of endorphins that will uplift your spirits. If possible avoid exercising in a low-lit area, studies show that exercising in bright light can reverse the effects of depression and improve mental health.

3. Get used to the cold. People who have a better tolerance to the cold tend to have less symptoms of SAD. Going on a casual walk during the winter can help your mind accept the fact that the weather is going to feel cold for the next few months.

4. Keep your environment brighter. Brighter light bulbs or even just opening the blinds and having a seat next to the window can help reverse the effect of the cold weather.

5. Vacations. This seems easier said than done for most but even just the thought of planning a vacation can boost your mood.

6. Give Cryotherapy a try. Cryotherapy causes the brain to release a higher-than normal level of endorphins, which help fight the feeling of depression. It has been known to increase energy levels, sleep and immune functions all of which are crucial to avoid the Winter Blues!


A Healthy Summer: 5 Benefits of Sun Exposure

The sun’s rays are heaven’s arrows to earth that bring forth an array of either destruction, or relaxing mitigation. The damaging elements of the sun’s rays are one to take account for but we can’t forget the benefits!

We’ve all heard it before… the sun’s capability of all things toxic, including skin cancer and second-degree burns. But we don’t hear much about the positive effects of the sun. Sure we all enjoy getting that nice sun kissed glow during our spring break vacation, but these benefits are cosmetic, feeding our ego more than anything.

Medio tutissimus ibis, or “you will go safest by the middle course”, is another saying for, “all things are best in moderation”. Coincidentally this phrase can be applied to humans’ relationship to the sun! Go figure! It turns out our big red pal provides us with a sundry of benefits (pun intended), all of which can be fostered with only a half hour of sunlight about 3 times a week. So, IN MODERATION is the key here. That means for those of you that sun bathe for hours a day, you might want to cut back on the flipping and flopping.

With moderation as the forefront of our sunning intentions we can now take a look at these 5 benefits for getting the most out of the summer sun! (Or any high noon sunlight for that matter)

1.    The sun’s light kills bacteria. Surprisingly enough, sunlight does kill bacteria! This is actually a common method of sanitizing the air. Examples of this method can be seen at select public locations. Businesses occasionally have sanitizing UV lights put at their entryways to clear away a percentage of bacterial flora found lurking on clothing and skin. So get out there and zap those critters off your skin! Get cho’ own home bacteria!

2.    Sunlight reduces your blood pressure. The University of Edinburgh has found that sunlight exposure releases a compound called Nitric Oxide that reduces blood pressure in the circulatory system. Richard Weller, in his TED talk, explains a study involving UVA rays and mice (as opposed to UVB rays which produce Vitamin D) and their observed decrease in blood pressure across a population. You can watch the TED talk here! Now, Take a deep breath, and absorb those tube-stretching rays!

3.    Sun exposure reduces cancer risk. It all goes back to that good ol’ saying, “keep things in moderation”. According to Rachel Nall, RN and contributing writer for Health Line,  “populations that live in locations with more daylight tend to have a reduced cancer rate.” It turns out cancers that have been reported to diminish with sun exposure include: “colon cancer, Hodgkin’s lymphoma, ovarian cancer, pancreatic cancer, and prostate cancer” (Health Line) well what do you know? Now we all have an excuse to move to the coast…

4.  The sun strengthens your bones. The sun is… good to the bone (duh-nuh-nuh-nuh)… According to the NationalOsteoporosis Foundation, The sun works to stimulate the absorption of calcium into the body by way of Vitamin D production! It turns out our bodies’ need for Vitamin D is crucial, especially when it comes to our calcium levels. Calcium is dependent on Vitamin D to move it along! So get your motor running and head out on that sun soaked highway.

5. Sunlight improves your sleep quality. In our recent blog, “Mastering Your Sleep: 5 Tips to Increase Your Sleep Quality” we mentioned that cell phones produce a light similar to that of the sun’s which inhibits melatonin’s release (the hormone responsible for the sleep/wake cycle). Well, this can be used to our advantage! According to Life Hack Expert, David K. William, The more sunlight you get the more time your body will have to stockpile it’s melatonin production! So soak up the sun and dive head deep into those twilight hours. Ah… sunlight never felt so relaxing!

With a scorching summer in our forecast we have to remember to be safe in the sun, but being safe doesn’t mean hiding indoors while others run, laugh, and frolic outside. You can have fun too! Just be sure to use your sunscreen for prolonged exposure AND always remember these 5 benefits! If not these 5 benefits, most of all remember the saying, “Medio tutissimus ibis”, and you will be safest by the middle course.


Have You Met Our Friend: NapTown Fitness?

Are you looking for a community of like-minded individuals? If your answer is yes then we would like to introduce you to one of our friends in the health and fitness industry, NapTown Fitness. With two locations in the heart of downtown Indianapolis and one in Broad Ripple, NapTown has been giving back to the community since 2011. NapTown is a community of like-minded individuals who want to make fitness and healthy lifestyles accessible to everyone. Offering a variety of benefits, with multiple different classes at three different locations, NapTown gives the people of Indianapolis the tools to be the best they can possibly be both physically and mentally.

Benefits include:

  • Education in regards to Nutrition and Wellness
  • Increased Health and Fitness
  • Develop Friendships
  • Networks created leading to job opportunities
  • Coaching technique and proper movement mechanics

NapTown has many different options to choose from based on your goals and fitness needs. All of which are coached by some of the best and most experienced coaches in the Indianapolis area. They offer CrossFit, which would be your more intense style of exercise with weights, gymnastics, high intensity and endurance all mixed to increase one’s fitness level. NapTown also offers a SWIFT program, which is a 45-minute class designed for those seeking a less intimidating environment, but still wanting to challenge the body. Other classes/clubs offered are Yoga by Practice Indie and Barbell and Endurance Club.

Classes Include:

  • CrossFit
  • SWIFT (Sweat With Indy For Time)
  • Yoga (Practice Indie)
  • Barbell Club (USAWL Official Club)
  • Endurance Club (Rowing/Running Seasonal)

Contact Information:

Phone: 317-632-8820

Email: Info@naptownfitness.com

Websites:

www.naptownfitness.com

www.crossfitnaptown.com

Locations:

NapTown Fitness – Delaware Location : 609 N Delaware, Indianapolis, IN 46204

NapTown Fitness – Capitol Location : 922 N Capitol Ave, Indianapolis, IN 46204

NapTown Fitness – Monon Trail Location: 5255 Winthrop Ave, Indianapolis, IN 46220


Cryo and the CrossFitter: Matt’s Honest Take on Cryotherapy

CrossFit. Many people know what it is, some by choice, others because their friends won’t shut up about it. I am one of these CrossFitters, and I happen to be pretty good at it.

At the ripe old age of 21 I have qualified and participated in the 2015 CrossFit Super Regional for the Central region. Before that I took part in the CrossFit Open which is 5 weeks of grueling, painful, and body destroying workouts that would make your doctor cringe. It was right before this open that I found (and started working for) Cryotherapy Indy.

Now I know what you’re thinking, “Matt, You’re 21 years old. You’re not supposed to get sore, knee pains, muscle pains or have a problem recovering at all!” I would agree with you. If I was a normal 21 year old, who did CrossFit like a normal person, I wouldn’t get sore. But I’m far from normal, and I am not a normal CrossFitter. I’m what some might call a “semi-professional” CrossFitter. I’m in the gym for about 6 hours a day, 6 days a week. MY body is put under immense intensity, pressure, and I just plain kick my butt everyday. Its this kind of butt kicking that has led me, a 21 year old, to NEEDING recovery methods like the Cryotherapy.

Since I have found the machine, nothing has been the same.

  • I sleep better at night, no more tossing and turning from sore muscles.
  • Every lifting session I feel like a new man (or boy) and I can hit it at 100%
  • I don’t worry about if I’ll be able to move the next day.
  • Mentally I feel like I have a HUGE leg up on my competition.

All and all the machine just plain works. Granted I work for the company that owns it and runs it, but honestly they could just pay me with sessions and I would be fine with that (don’t let them know I said that though). If you ever come in on a Wednesday or a Friday after 1:00 you have a very solid chance that it’ll be me running you though the machine, and you’ll be able to find out first hand that passion that I have for the machine. Like I said before, the Cryotherapy just plain works, and that’s the truth.


Mastering Your Sleep: 5 Tips to Increase Your Sleep Quality

We’ve all been there, shuffling under our “cozy” comforters to find that sweet spot where we can finally drift off into the ethereal land of restful relaxation only to wake up feeling a bit more drowsy than the night before. How can we conquer this common occurrence? More sleep doesn’t always work, granted we should get roughly 7-9 hours of sleep/night, (depending on your age group according to The Sleep Foundation) but sometimes that’s not enough. Here we’ll discuss 5 easy tips that can aid us all before the sandman punches our ticket to board the snooze cruise.

But hang on, before we consider these five tips its important to understand how sleep affects us from a physiological standpoint. No one explains it better than Jeff Illif, Neuroscientist and now, an Assistant Professor of Anesthesiology and Perioperative Medicine at Oregon Health & Science University. In his TED Talk, he explains his recent discoveries on how the brain functions to get rid of waste. Watch it here.

If you don’t feel like watching the amazing-awe-inspiring-11-minute video, in a nutshell: the brain activates a “cleansing” process during the sleep cycle where the brain actually opens up “plumbing” alongside the circulatory vessels in the brain. This “plumbing” fills with cerebrospinal fluid and collect waste that has been built up from the whole day. This waste is one of the reasons why we start to feel groggy from sleep deprivation.

With this in mind, lets consider these 5 easy tips to kick-start our brains’ purging process and increase sleep productivity!

1.  Colder is better

Its time to turn our evolutionary clocks back to the Stone Age and live like the cavemen used to – in the cold. Research has shown us that people who slept in colder temperatures (roughly 60-65 degrees Fahrenheit) fell asleep quicker and with better quality. I typically keep my thermostat set at 65 degrees)

2. Turn off those screens (phones, television, etc.)

As relaxing, as it might be to check your Instagram feed or those funny Facebook posts before dozing off, the light generated from your screen is very similar to that of the sun and can trick your mind into thinking “Its time to stay awake!” So try to eliminate checking your phone before going to bed, even if it’s a part of your bedtime rituals. Which brings us to our next tip!

3. Develop a bedtime routine 1 hour before sleeping

Whether it be meditating, stretching, breathing exercises, positive thinking, or reading a book – developing a routine, 1 hour before bed, can be an easy way to “trick” your brain into a sleep mode. If you try to sleep immediately after completing an engaging task your mind will feel too busy therefore making it harder to fall asleep. I prefer breathing exercises and meditating to put me under.

4. Reposition your bed

Ever feel uncomfortable sleeping in public? This is due to an evolutionary barrier in our brains! According to Richard Wiseman a professor of psychology at the University of Hertfordshire, repositioning your bed furthest from your entryway as well as facing it will make you feel more comfortable. This is due to the way we have evolved. We feel safer if we can spot trouble, allowing us more time to react. Now… if we can only figure out how to sleep with our eyes peeled.

5. Hit the gym

Going to the gym is probably the hardest of all the tips to follow, but definitely the most impactful. Research has shown that people who exercise get a higher quality of sleep each night compared to those who don’t exercise. Increase the intensity in the gym so you can increase your body’s need for relaxation.

In this day and age when time seems so meager, achieving a higher quality of sleep is quite difficult. So unless you’re the guru of shuteye, following these simple steps should help you achieve an increase in sleep quality and brain functioning.

Sources:
https://sleepfoundation.org/how-sleep-works/how-much-sleep-do-we-really-need
http://www.bakadesuyo.com/2015/06/get-better-sleep/
https://www.ted.com/talks/jeff_iliff_one_more_reason_to_get_a_good_night_s_sleep#t-1601
http://www.helpguide.org/articles/sleep/how-to-sleep-better.htm
http://www.bakadesuyo.com/2013/01/sleeping-well/

Feeling Stressed Out this Holiday Season? We Can Help!

Many of you may have already met Terry, Cryotherapy Indy’s own office elf, when you’ve been in for cryotherapy or a float. We do apologize if he’s interfered with your session, but as you can imagine, he’s been quite stressed this month. You see, every evening he leaves here to report back to the North Pole and has to make it back to Indy before we open the next morning. As you can imagine, this leaves poor Terry stressed out, both mentally and physically. What you probably can’t imagine, is how much he complains about the cold during his cryotherapy session. Come on, Terry, you’re from the North Pole! Complaints about the temperature or not, he loves how much better he feels after his three minute sessions.

terry cryo

 

Benefits of Cryotherapy:

  • Decreases muscle soreness, pain, and inflammation
  • Increases energy
  • Reduces stress and anxiety
  • Faster recovery time

 

 

Terry also takes advantage of floating when he’s in the office. Although, he’s afraid to get salt on his uniform, so he floats on a raft…you’re doing it wrong, Terry…he still swears he benefits from the sessions.

 

terry float

 

Benefits of Flotation Therapy:

  • Decreases muscle tension and pain
  • Improves memory and concentration
  • Increases energy levels and improves sleep quality
  • Promotes peaceful relaxation

 

 

If the holidays have you stressed out, we encourage you to contact our office today to learn more about cryotherapy and flotation therapy. Happy holidays from all of us here at Cryotherapy Indy (even Terry)!


Meet Our Newest Member: Ms. Floatie

Ever have one of those days where everything seems to be going against you and you have no control over your day’s outcome?

I know, right! Sounds like most of our days.

Sure, you are still breathing but are you really living? What does that even mean? If you are nodding your head right now, then we can both certainly relate.

Stress is in both of our lives and I will be the first to admit it. There is no gain in hiding it but only in exploring ways to become in control of it instead of letting it control us. We both know stress is inevitable and there is only so much we can handle solely.  

What if I were to tell you there was a simpler solution? And what if you weren’t alone?

Wouldn’t it be divine for your mind and body to slow down for a change with restless thoughts fading out and reaching exhilarating feeling of emptiness.

Now, let’s try something together. Let’s take a journey together into the galaxy far- far away to Mars or Venus…depending on who is reading.

Imagine we are floating through space, weightless. All sensations of sight, sound, temperature, even the light stress of supporting your own body has simply slipped away.

Are you with me? Ok… just checking!

Now, imagine that all you have to do to get into that space is to step into a flotation pod. As you slip into the pod, dense magnesium-sulfate water inside the pod supports you so profoundly that you float in perfect suspension. Soon the water and air temperatures adjust so that you can no longer tell where one stops and the other begins, leaving you in a place where you’re peaceful, serene and calm.

This is the point where you are relieved of the responsibility of maintaining yourself in three-dimensional space you’ve been confide in as you know as your reality. Instead you begin living in a place of perfect relaxation free from your thoughts with full control of your life. You are now breathing and living once and again and ready to conquer and reach your full potential!

Did you know this mystery device by the name of Flotation Pod has been utilized over the last 60 years that has been clinically researched with immense benefits? If not, need not worry. You’re not the only one.

This device helps sustain control over one’s stress caused by external factors in many cases and has been known to contribute to one’s various physical and psychological wellbeing.

No matter who you are, where you’re from or what your life is like, chances are you’ve got some stress from time to time. It’s no coincidence that you pondered on this letter from me today.

I hope today’s video brings you a solution and you enjoy meeting the newest member at our clinic whom we know as Ms. Floatie. 

Now… click away to learn more about this amazing and unique experience and the specific revelation of the benefits for you.  See you here soon!

P.S. I’m certain you know someone who is currently stressed out. Please help them and spread the love by sharing this post with your best friends, clients and colleagues. They’ll thank you for it, and you can take full credit.