Mindfulness Walking

The Art of Mindfulness Walking

What is Mindfulness Walking?

Mindfulness is the practice of bringing your attention into the present moment where mindfulness walking is the practice of becoming aware of your surroundings and how your body and mind feel whilst moving. There are many benefits to this by focusing on the present moment you can increase self awareness and develop skills to manage your stress and maybe see a different perspective on any stressful situations in your life. Autumn is a great time to be outdoors, by engaging in the local environment and appreciating nature, mindfulness walking helps you to connect to your senses, releasing stress and anxiety and promoting health and wellbeing. Find out more about our mindfulness walking sessions by visiting http://www.fitness-excel.com

London Marathon – Running Injuries


Injuries are inevitable when participating in endurance events and can occur as a result of a breakdown in tissue and muscles being overloaded. With just over one week to go until London Marathon 2019, my plantar fasciitis has flared up again.  This condition can causes inflammation of the plantar fascia, a thin layer of tough tissue supporting the arch of the foot.  Rest and ice are the best form of treatment together with a performance based Pilates exercise programme for the core, such as side plank, integrating foot muscle strengthening and flexibility in the lower limbs.

Why Walk The Camino de Santiago de Compostela – Sarria to Santiago April 2018

What better way to set yourself a fitness challenge for 2018 and walk the Camino de Santiago de Compostela Pilgrim Walk.  During the past decade the number of pilgrims commencing their journey in Sarria has increased rom 39,583 to 58,554.  Pilgrimage is experienced on many different levels.  There is the physical challenge of walking a long distance in a minimum time.  How deep we choose to make the experience, is entirely left to us, by slowing the walking pace and the extended periods of silence allows time for reflection and introspection which can lead to greater insights, change and growth.  Spring is an ideal time for taking up this challenge, the sun is warm, flowers are appearing, it can be windy, but the route is not over crowded.

How long does it take?  It is roughly divided into 5 stages, about 23 km per day.

Preparation – Start to walk and build up your miles.  Invest in a pair of good walking boots.  Pack a light rain jacket, the weather can be unpredictable.  Take a sun hat and sun cream.  April can be very warm.  Your backpack should weigh no more than 10 kilos.  Foot care is essential to avoid blisters, make sure socks are breathable.

To enhance the experience – do not bring.  Your mobile phone, unless you are a solo traveller and you may need this for an emergency.  Your watch – you can learn to navigate and adapt to your natural clock.  Travel light and get rid of  excess clutter.

Language – It is very useful to learn some basic Spanish words.

Pilgrim Passport – This document is a credential of the places you visit along the way.

Food & Drink – A minimum daily intake of 2 litres per day to avoid dehydration.  Isotonic drinks containing sodium and potassium are useful.  Pilgrims should eat high-energy foods (chocolate, dried fruit, figs, flap jacks).

Basic first aid kit – (antiseptic cream, gauze, band aids, sunscreen, adhesive tape, nail scissors, plasters, Vaseline.




What is Life & Health Coaching?

Life coaching has its roots in psychology, it is different to counselling which focus on helping people gain more functionality in their lives.  Contemporary life coaching appears to have emerged from humanistic traditions of psychology, such as Maslow, 1954.  First, life coaching uses approaches linking thinking, feeling, behavioural and the external environment, with similarities in cognitive behavioural approaches.  Second, life coaching is solution focused, focuses on goals rather than the past.  Life coaching usually involves the coach who has a specialised subject knowledge in that area in which the coaching takes a personal, holistic approach to personal change and development. Here the client spends some time examining and evaluating his or her own life and then makes life enhancing changes with the support of the coach.

Some examples of the key issues a client may want to address are work-life balance, dealing with stress or incorporating more fitness and healthy eating into one’s daily routine.  The client will normally have a goal they want to achieve and the role of the life coach is to conduct conversations in which the coach asks direct and sometimes challenging questions which help the client focus on clarifying and exploring ways to achieve their goals.  Some life coaching takes place via skype which has proven successful and is very time efficient or face-to-face sessions.  The first session will focus on a goal.  Research undertaken by Williams and Davis, 2002, suggest clients could focus on one or two goals.  Often, the coach will ask the client to complete a pre-prepared form in detail outlining the benefits and then tailor the session according to the client’s preferences.  After the session, a goal-action plan is designed, together with targets, monitoring and evaluation.