Join the resistance and start using your time wisely
Time is precious - and, for the majority of us, in short supply - and so it should be used wisely.
If you could only spare an hour each week to exercise, you would want to choose the one that delivers the most benefits to your body in terms of health and seeing results but also the one that provides the feel-good factor.
The type of exercise that will deliver on all three fronts is resistance workouts. This means anything that uses some form of weight to challenge the body.
Remember that your body itself also counts as a weight, so exercises such as lunges, press-ups and squats that use your body-weight against you are all resistance work. Gym work that uses added weight is the very same.
An hour of resistance training will deliver far more than an hour of jogging or doing aerobics. Yes, cardio-focused workouts burn the most calories, but that doesn't equate to the best overall results.
Resistance workouts rev up your metabolic rate, reduce your fat mass, increase your lean tissue, release the most endorphins and deliver anti-ageing benefits.
In short, this type of exercise will help you to not only to look better but to feel better too.
And yet so many people are scared of resistance training. They think that using weights will lead to them bulking up rather than slimming down, and many women fear their arms becoming overly muscular. The reality is that both of those thoughts are misconceptions; there is nothing to be scared of.
You don't even have to join a gym to get in on the act. Instead, log on to RTÉ's 'Operation Transformation' website, (rte.ie/ot) which will show you how to do resistance exercises in the comfort and safety of your own home. You don't need any specialist equipment - no equipment all in fact - and the website includes programmes designed for all fitness levels.
This week I challenge you to try one resistance session. Just one, even for ten minutes. I think you will be surprised just how easy it is to do.
Frozen fruit sticks
It's chilly outside but that doesn't mean that you still can't indulge in a frozen treat after you've worked a sweat during your workout.
You will need
The best bit about this culinary trick is that you can make countless different combinations, or just stick to your tastebuds' single favourite fruit. This combination is one of my favourites.
1 punnet of strawberries
100g of pineapple chunks
Rinse and peel the fruit, if necessary, and cut into chunks. Push the pieces onto the skewers. Cover a baking tray with parchment and place a single layer of skewers on it. Place in the freezer for 45 mins to 1 hour. Serve.
The stresses of modern life mean we spend a lot of time dwelling on negative things - and dwelling on ourselves too. Today, take a step in a new, happier direction and make an effort to pay someone a compliment. Be it on what they are wearing or the work they are doing, surprise at least one person by saying something positive about them. A simple way to light up both of your days!
Eggs are high in protein and easy to cook. I found two great products - the free range liquid egg and liquid egg white mix - from Irish company O'Egg. Not only are they great for omelettes and scrambled eggs, the pasteurised egg is safer for pregnant women when used in dishes that call for runny eggs. €3.99, see oegg.ie
Sexual health can be an embarrassing area for many to raise with their GP. If you have any concerns in this area, visit yoursexualhealth.ie which contains information and advice on common sexual health conditions.