Are You Fit for Your Age?

We are all aware of the health ben­e­fits of reg­u­lar phys­i­cal activ­ity, phys­i­cally, meta­bol­i­cally and psy­cho­log­i­cally. But did you know that the amount and inten­sity of phys­i­cal activ­ity is equally important.picture of woman's feet walking

As I have said in pre­vi­ous arti­cles ‘it’s all about the METs’.  How many METs do you accu­mu­late in a given week?  How high can you raise your metab­o­lism?  Can you meet the required fit­ness level for your age group?

There is a set tar­get of fit­ness for us to meet as we con­tinue to age.  For exam­ple, did you know that a fif­teen year old girl should be capa­ble of rais­ing her metab­o­lism 13 times her rest­ing state or that a women 65 years should be capa­ble of rais­ing hers to 6.  Pre­ven­tion is all about fit­ness.  I’m not talk­ing about com­pet­i­tive­ness I’m talk­ing about get­ting involved in reg­u­lar phys­i­cal activ­ity.  Set­ting a goal to achieve your MET tar­get that will lower your risk of dis­ease and enhance your qual­ity of life.

METs (Meta­bolic Equivalents)

Man running uphill viewed from behindStan­dard meta­bolic equiv­a­lent (MET) is a unit used to esti­mate the amount of oxy­gen used by the body dur­ing phys­i­cal activ­ity. 1 MET = the energy (oxy­gen) used by the body at rest, while sit­ting qui­etly or lay­ing down. The harder your body works dur­ing an activ­ity, the more oxy­gen is con­sumed and the higher the MET level you are per­form­ing at.

Guide­lines from the Amer­i­can Col­lege of Sports Med­i­cine states that we need to exer­cise for 150 min­utes per week. It is impor­tant to know how many METs you achieved in those min­utes and also how high did you raise your METs?

The chart below shows MET tar­gets for selected age groups.

           Female              Male
Age MET tar­get Age METs tar­get
20 12.1 20 12.5
25 11.4 25 11.9
30 10.8 30 11.4
35 10.1 35 10.8
40 9.5 40 10.3
45 8.8 45 9.7
50 8.2 50 9.2
55 7.5 55 8.6
60 6.9 60 8.1
65 6.2 65 7.5
70 5.6 70 7
75 4.9 75 6.4
80 4.3 80 5.9

Note* The Mur­phy (METs) Pro­gramme train indi­vid­u­als to achieve >20 METs in a given week.

For more infor­ma­tion on MET tar­gets click link Cal­cu­lat­ing your weekly METs km

Murphy (METs) Programme Launched in Ballinasloe

I am delighted to inform you that East Gal­way & Mid­lands Can­cer Sup­port are now offer­ing my pro­gram the ‘Mur­phy (METs) Pro­gramme’ a low to mod­er­ate inten­sity phys­i­cal activ­ity pro­gram to their mem­bers.  The Mur­phy (METs) Pro­gramme is specif­i­cally designed to be safe for peo­ple with chronic dis­eases includ­ing can­cer, osteo­poro­sis and diabetes.

The Mur­phy (METs) Pro­gramme involves con­di­tion­ing, strength­en­ing, and endurance phases. Patients are encour­aged to exer­cise at a level that has been deter­mined on an indi­vid­ual basis. The focus of the pro­gram is to improve flex­i­bil­ity, bal­ance, co-ordination, mobil­ity, strength, mus­cu­loskele­tal func­tion, bone den­sity and con­fi­dence, in addi­tion to hav­ing an impact on car­dio­vas­cu­lar fit­ness, weight man­age­ment and psy­choso­cial well-being. My pro­gram was acknowl­edged by the Amer­i­can Insti­tute of Can­cer Research (AICR) 2012.  East Gal­way & Mid­lands Can­cer Sup­port holds a license to deliver classes in the Mur­phy (METs) Programme.

I have worked towards this moment for many years, to finally teach oth­ers to teach my pro­gram safely and effec­tively and it is my goal for the ‘Mur­phy (METs) Pro­gramme’ to expand to other cen­tres across the coun­try so that a greater num­ber of can­cer sur­vivors can reap its ben­e­fits, Phys­i­cally, Meta­bol­i­cally and Psychologically”.

For fur­ther infor­ma­tion on the Mur­phy (METs) Pro­gramme and Train­ers Short Course please con­tact me at mobile 085 196 5468 or email mariemurphyhealthfitness@gmail.com

Improving Your Health & Fitness in 2016

If you have made a New Year’s res­o­lu­tion to improve your fit­ness; do more exer­cise, increase your strength, eat a health­ier diet, lose weight then fear not, help is at hand. The fol­low­ing tips and train­ing sched­ules will help you feel health­ier, fit­ter and more energised:IMAG1760

  • Get­ting your METs is first and fore­most!  If time is lim­ited for Marie Murphyexer­cis­ing make car­dio­vas­cu­lar exer­cise your first choice by using the largest mus­cle groups in a repet­i­tive move­ment (exam­ple; walk­ing, jog­ging, swim­ming etc.).
  • Set real­is­tic goals.  If you can­not see your­self hold­ing your exer­cise rou­tine for a period of 15 weeks then the task is too great.  The aver­age time a per­son holds an exer­cise pro­gramme is 6–8 weeks; this is too short for life chang­ing benefits.

  • Be con­sis­tent, take small steps. Increase time, dis­tance or rep­e­ti­tions of your work­outs every 3 weeks.  This allows the body time to adapt to the routine/stress level which makes advanc­ing to a higher level eas­ier and safer.

  • Stay hydrated, drink at least 1.5 litres of water daily. Keep in mind high water-volume foods also pro­vide your body with flu­ids. Fruits and veg­eta­bles are com­posed of 90 per­cent water.

  • Healthy SaladWhen it comes to eat­ing healthy, los­ing weight or main­tain­ing your cur­rent weight, you are more likely to be suc­cess­ful if you make small changes over time rather than chang­ing your entire diet all at once.

 

To sched­ule a con­sul­ta­tion with Marie please call 085 196 5468 or email marie@mariemurphyhealthfitness.com

East Galway & Midlands Cancer Support Gym

Excit­ing new project is tak­ing place for can­cer sur­vivors and their fam­i­lies in Bal­li­nasloe, Co. Gal­way.   Jacque­line Daly Direc­tor of East Gal­way & Mid­lands Can­cer Sup­port Cen­tre envi­sioned how to fur­ther enhance survivor’s recov­ery in none other than build­ing a gym on site to improve health and fit­ness eas­ily and con­ve­niently for all members.

This is a state of the arts project and the first of its kind in Ire­land. The cen­tre has licenced the ‘Mur­phy (METs) Pro­gramme’ which will allow classes to be thought by qual­i­fied per­sonal. “I have worked towards this moment for many years; to finally teach oth­ers to teach my pro­gramme safely and effec­tively and it is my goal for the ‘Mur­phy (METs) Pro­gramme’ to expand to other cen­tres across the coun­try so that a greater num­ber of can­cer sur­vivors can reap its benefits”.

Dáil Éireann 23092015This week we met with the Min­is­ter of Health ‘Leo Varad­kar’ and dis­cussed the plans for the cen­tre. I had the oppor­tu­nity to share with him a lit­tle about the ‘Mur­phy (METs) Pro­gramme’ and my goal to increase aware­ness to the health ben­e­fits asso­ci­ated with daily phys­i­cal activ­ity and draw atten­tion to the amount and inten­sity of phys­i­cal activ­ity for can­cer sur­vivors to achieve these ben­e­fits; phys­i­o­logic, meta­bolic and psychological.

I will keep you posted on our progress in Bal­li­nasloe, Co Galway.

 

 

Exercise and Cancer

Marie MurphyThere is a grow­ing body of lit­er­a­ture that sup­ports the impor­tance of exer­cise in the pre­ven­tion of can­cer and can­cer recur­rence. Exer­cise helps increase lean body mass, reduces fat and decreases the like­li­hood of weight gain. To lose weight, activ­ity and exer­cise must be increased. Bod­ies with more mus­cle mass require more energy expen­di­ture than bod­ies with more fat, thus the more mus­cle you develop, the greater the amount of calo­ries you burn. Any increase in activ­ity and exer­cise is likely to have ben­e­fits and each per­son must increase their activ­ity at a level that is appro­pri­ate for them. If you have been inac­tive, it may be impor­tant to check with your doc­tor about lim­i­ta­tions, and then begin an exer­cise rou­tine that starts slowly and increases in inten­sity and dura­tion over a period of time. If you start too hard or too fast, you may injure your­self and stop exer­cis­ing. Exer­cise really needs to be viewed as a life­time process that has phys­i­o­log­i­cal and psy­cho­log­i­cal benefits.

Activ­ity is mea­sured based on METs or meta­bolic equiv­a­lent. One MET is defined as the energy it takes to sit qui­etly for an hour. When at rest, each per­son uses the same amount of oxy­gen which is 3.5ml per kilo­gram per minute. For the aver­age adult, this means that they will burn approx­i­mately one calo­rie for every 1 kilo­gram (2.2 pounds) of body weight per hour. A per­son who weighs 68kg, will burn about 68 calo­ries while at rest. Mod­er­ate inten­sity activ­i­ties are those that make you move fast or are stren­u­ous enough to burn three to six times as much energy per minute as you do when you are sit­ting qui­etly. EilishThese types of exer­cises would include brisk walk­ing (about 3–4 miles in an hour). Walk­ing is an excel­lent exer­cise; how­ever, it is impor­tant to do enough of it to increase the num­ber of METs. While the Amer­i­can Col­lege of Sports Med­i­cine (ACSM) has deter­mined that peo­ple need 3–6 METs five days per week, some exer­cise research sug­gests that you need more and it is rec­om­mended that peo­ple strive for 15–20 METs per week. To fig­ure out how many METs you are using and how to increase it, con­sider the following;

• Walk­ing 1.6km (1 mile) in 30 min­utes = 3 METs/hr, thus you would need to walk 5 hours per week to achieve 15 METS.
• Walk­ing 1.6km (1 mile) in 15 min­utes = 4.6 METs/hr, thus you would need to walk 3 ½ hours per week to achieve 16 METS.

In a 2004 study, women who exer­cised greater than 17.2 METs per week had a reduced like­li­hood of breast can­cer recur­rence com­pared to women who exer­cised less than that amount, sug­gest­ing that exer­cise is ben­e­fi­cial both in terms of pre­ven­tion and recurrence.

For fur­ther infor­ma­tion please see:

Know Your METs for Pre­ven­tion — Recur­rence of Disease

Cal­cu­lat­ing your weekly METs km

15 weeks Walk­ing Programme

Infor­ma­tion for Health Professionals

Effects of Alcohol on Sports Performance

Picture1Any­one who has an inter­est in play­ing sports or keep­ing fit should under­stand the effects alco­hol can have on their per­for­mance. Not hav­ing a bal­anced approach to alco­hol could be what gets in the way of you reap­ing the rewards from all the work you’ve put in.

The two main ways alco­hol affects the body dur­ing exer­cise are in dehy­dra­tion and energy;

Dehy­dra­tion leads to reduced per­for­mance.  Because alco­hol is a diuretic, which

means it makes your kid­neys pro­duce more urine, drink­ing too much of it can lead to dehy­dra­tion. Exer­cis­ing soon after drink­ing alco­hol can make dehy­dra­tion worse because you sweat as your body tem­per­a­ture rises. Com­bined, sweat­ing and the diuretic effect of exer­cise make dehy­dra­tion along with your body over­heat­ing much more likely. You need to be hydrated when you exer­cise to main­tain the flow of blood through your body, which is essen­tial for cir­cu­lat­ing oxy­gen and nutri­ents to your muscles.

Alco­hol inter­feres with the way your body pro­duces energy — When you’re metabolis­ing or break­ing down alco­hol the liver can’t pro­duce as much glu­cose, which means you have low lev­els of blood sugar. Exer­cise requires high lev­els of sugar (car­bo­hy­drates) to give you energy. If your liver isn’t pro­duc­ing enough glu­cose you will be slower, have less energy and won’t be able to exer­cise as intensely along with the added risk of adversely affect­ing your con­cen­tra­tion, coor­di­na­tion, reac­tion, dex­ter­ity etc.

Both of these effects hap­pen imme­di­ately which is why it is not advised to exer­cise or com­pete in sport soon after drink­ing alcohol.

Alcoholism/Alcohol abuse causes

  • Nerve dis­or­ders
  • Mus­cle cramps
  • Speeds up ageing
  • Osteo­poro­sis
  • Appetite loss
  • Depres­sion

 Binge drink­ing can lead to;

  • Atrial fib­ril­la­tion
  • Increases risk of blood clots
  • Increases risk of stroke

Physical Activity and Living With Cancer

Pub­lic talk at Can­cer Care West 72 Sea­mus Quirke Road, West­side, Gal­way Thurs­day April 16, at 7.30 pm.

Marie MurphyI will be address­ing such top­ics as the impor­tance of phys­i­cal activ­ity, side effects of can­cer treat­ment, the impor­tance of resis­tance train­ing and the role of nutri­tion. I will also out­line the key com­po­nents of the Mur­phy (METs) pro­gramme, a spe­cialised fit­ness regime for peo­ple liv­ing with cancer.

This pub­lic talk is free of charge and will be par­tic­u­larly use­ful to can­cer patients who are adapt­ing to liv­ing with the ill­ness. Please call Can­cer Care West Sup­port Cen­tre at 091 540040 for more details.

 

 

Atwater’s Vision: A Healthy Balanced Nutrition

The first pub­lished dietary guide­lines were writ­ten in 1894 by W.O. Atwa­ter.  Atwa­ter ini­ti­ated the sci­en­tific basis for con­nect­ing food com­po­si­tion, dietary intake, and health, and empha­sized the impor­tance of vari­ety, pro­por­tion, and mod­er­a­tion in healthy eat­ing.  It is worth not­ing that at this time spe­cific vit­a­mins and min­er­als had not yet been discovered.

In 1902 Atwa­ter stated:

“Unless care is exer­cised in select­ing food, a diet may result which is one-sided or badly balanced-that is, one in which either pro­tein or fuel ingre­di­ents (car­bo­hy­drate and fat) are pro­vided in excess….The evils of overeat­ing may not be felt at once, but sooner or later they are sure to appear-perhaps in an exces­sive amount of fatty tis­sue, per­haps in gen­eral debil­ity, per­haps in actual disease.” 

By the 1950s, nutri­tional guide­lines moved to four food groups known as the “Basic Four” with the focus on get­ting suf­fi­cient nutri­ents.  This con­cept was widely used for the next two decades.  Dur­ing the 1990s, the Food Guide Pyra­mid was released.  The pyra­mid con­veyed key con­cepts regard­ing vari­ety, pro­por­tion­al­ity, and mod­er­a­tion; Atwater’s words repeated ten decades later.Nutrition Chart MMP

Lets get back to basics.  A diet that is high in veg­eta­bles, fruits, whole grains, beans, fish, and low in fat, high in fibre is can­cer protective.

Improving your Health and Fitness in 2015

If you have made a New Year’s res­o­lu­tion to improve your fit­ness; do more exer­cise, increase your strength, eat a health­ier diet, lose weight then fear not, help is at hand. The fol­low­ing tips will help you feel health­ier, fit­ter and more energised:IMAG1760

  • Get­ting your METs is Clare Holiday Pictures 220first and fore­most!  If time is lim­ited for exer­cis­ing make car­dio­vas­cu­lar exer­cise your first choice by using the largest mus­cle groups in a repet­i­tive move­ment (exam­ple; walk­ing, jog­ging, swim­ming etc.).
  • Set real­is­tic goals.  If you can­not see your­self hold­ing your exer­cise rou­tine for a period of 15 weeks then the task is too great.  The aver­age time a per­son holds an exer­cise pro­gramme is 6–8 weeks; this is too short for life chang­ing benefits.

  • Be con­sis­tent, take small steps. Increase time, dis­tance or rep­e­ti­tions of your work­outs every 3 weeks.  This allows the body time to adapt to the routine/stress level which makes advanc­ing to a higher level eas­ier and safer.

  • Stay hydrated, drink at least 1.5 litres of water daily. Keep in mind high water-volume foods also pro­vide your body with flu­ids. Fruits and veg­eta­bles are com­posed of 90 per­cent water.

  • Healthy SaladWhen it comes to eat­ing healthy, los­ing weight or main­tain­ing your cur­rent weight, you are more likely to be suc­cess­ful if you make small changes over time rather than chang­ing your entire diet all at once.

 

For a con­sul­ta­tion con­tact Marie at 085 196 5468 or email murphyprogramme@gmail.com to place your name on the wait­ing list for upcom­ing course.

Staying active over the holiday period

Whilst you may not be able to stick to your nor­mal exer­cise rou­tine over the hol­i­day period, you can still fit some exer­cise in. For exam­ple, if you nor­mally walk out­doors but find the weather too cold, try work­ing out indoors. Walk­ing up and down a flight stairs once is equal to one minute of weight bear­ing exercise. 

Merry ChristmasStair climb­ing is also excel­lent for increas­ing your bone strength (bone den­sity) in your hips; it works on the main mus­cles for walk­ing and is very good for your over­all health. While watch­ing your favourite TV pro­gramme or lis­ten­ing to your favourite radio pro­gramme march­ing on the spot or any form of danc­ing are addi­tional choices.

You may not have an hour to spare to com­plete your reg­u­lar work­out how­ever, short reg­u­lar bursts of activ­ity can help main­tain your fit­ness level and reduce the chance of an extended period of time going by with­out exer­cis­ing (it is always eas­ier to main­tain then to gain back).  5 min­utes walk­ing, jog­ging or march­ing on the spot on and off through­out the day all adds up and con­tributes to bet­ter health.

Lastly, it may be eas­ier to keep to an exer­cise rou­tine when you share it with some­one. Walk with a friend, walk your dog, jog along­side your child while they cycle their new bike from Santa. It’s all about stay­ing active, get­ting your METs and reap­ing the benefits.

Hope you find the above tips help­ful and I would like to wish you a very Merry Christ­mas and Health, Hap­pi­ness & Pros­per­ity for 2015

Christ­mas Gift Voucher can be used towards start­ing the New Year with a per­son­al­ized train­ing programme.