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The Corporate Athelete

For over 20 years I've has been working within the NHS and in the wellness sector studying health, exercise and lifestyle living. In today's performance orientated world there is a real need for individuals in pressured positions to be able to deliver results day in and day out. This requires individuals to be in the best possible shape, whether playing a sport or managing and running a business. Too often in the chase for success personal well-being is neglected, often with the potential for serious health consequences.

A LONG DISTANCE EVENT Olympic athletes although having a clear focus on world class performance often have a limited amount of time to perform at a top level. So Sir Steve Redgrave ( olympic rower) and Michael Phelps ( Olympic swimmer) are two notable exceptions, which makes them legendary in their respective sports. However the corporate athlete can often be looking at a career that has the potential to spend 40 to 50 years!. Throughout this time, to stay at the top level they need to consistently perform at their best. It's a long distance events for sure.

WHAT ARE THE WELLBEING FACTORS THAT CAN CAUSE POTENTIAL PROBLEMS Well it's not clear cut but consistent stress is a factor that needs to be addressed. If not dealt with successfully it's negative effects include, high blood pressure contributing to the potential heart problems and stroke, elevated Blood sugars raising the risk for diabetes, increase production of acid in the stomach causing potential stomach upsets even ulcers changes in blood cholesterol raising the risk for coronary heart disease and a host of other issues including dangerous heart rhythms that could be life-threatening.

Lack of moderate exercise on a regular basis can simply contribute to clogging up the system, particularly the blood vessels and create the potential for blockages in the heart and brain. High intensity and sustained exhausted exercise contrary to belief is not the best antidote it carries risk particularly if you're not really fit. Settle for more moderate intensity exercise, boosting endorphins and their cardio protective benefits. The corporate athlete should know their key healthy numbers just as they know their sports performance numbers. These include blood pressure cholesterol blood sugars and some less common numbers that include inflammatory markers like C reactive protein and homocysteine. Monitoring your heart rhythm with an ECG also valuable to check for any written disturbances or lack of oxygen going to the heart during exercise. This together with an echocardiogram to check for any structural or functional abnormalities of the heart wall is a good idea to.

As a corporate athlete ignoring warning signs that all is to is not well can be a potential ticket to disaster. Listening to your body and possible warning signs is vital. Poor nutrition and poor hydration also has a cost. After the age of 35-40 years of age the famous Cleveland clinic based in the USA recommends 5 to 6 smaller intakes of energy via healthy snacks and meals per day, Low in saturated fat's balance protein and complex carbohydrates to keep energy levels high. Also juicing (mixing fruits and vegetables in the whole form without filtering - the body needs this vital fibre) and taking the right supplements and vitamins is useful in maintaining health and energy. The end game has to last the distance as a business leader, golf executive with health, fitness, happiness and success this is the mark of a true corporate athlete. My suggested remedy to lasting the distance as a corporate athlete…..

* Learn to have 10 minutes of quite time everyday with deep breathing techniques that help promote good health * Make an appointment in your diary to take regular moderate exercise - 2 to 3 hours a week or try these quick office exercises * Know your own well being profile through measuring key health numbers annually or Calculate YOUR BMR & AMR to maintain your weight * Listen to your body & be aware of your own internal warning signs & act rather than ignore symptoms of ill health * Eat nutritious healthy food low in saturates and trans fatty acids, with a balance of protein & complex carbohydrates for slow & sustained energy release or with a little help * Drink 8-10 large glasses of still water daily, keep hydrated through checking the colour of your urine ( it should be light and transparent in appliance always, not dark ) * Allow laughter & happiness to percolate into your day & practice 3 random acts of kindness to people you know or don know - it’ll help protect health. (

I love a movie that makes my sides burst with laughter !)

“ You either pay for your health now, or you pay later and the choice is yours”

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