Stress Is a Killer
by Neil Perkins
I don’t want to ruin the big surprise package that we are due to launch next month, but yesterday’s ‘Know your numbers’ assessment meant now is as good a time as any to reveal one part of our new package and discuss the effects stress has on your body.
We’ve teamed up with someone and are about to launch the ‘Business Athlete Assessment’. In Neil Perkins terms, this will ‘Kick the bollocks’ out of any other corporate wellbeing package that ANYONE offers. Our soon to be unveiled partnership will give our clients the opportunity to take a deep look at themselves using world class assessments translated into business and performance.
There will be three assessments that we will offer as part of the ‘Business Athlete Assessment’ and the one I am about to talk about was form my perspective was the least exciting (you can wait a little longer to hear about the other two). I am in simple terms a boxing coach, now my role as a coach varies and has taken many forms from dietitian, relationship councillor, taxi, mortgage advisor, business soundboard and general listening ear. To quote Mickey from Rocky, I don’t like to listen to ‘the soft shit that comes out of people’s mouths’ but for someone who works with a high proportion of city centre professionals and offers them ‘elite level coaching for the everyman’ I need to gain a deep understanding of resilience, emotional, physical and a spiritual wellbeing and how it affects people’s performance – not just in the gym, but at work.
We will be offering a 3-day heart rate monitor as part of the Business Athlete Assessment. Our partner who is very much corporate focused was adamant that this was the test that companies would be most interested in. For three (or five) days you wear a heart rate monitor and complete a log of your tasks. It monitors the depth of your sleep, quality of your recovery and varying stress levels throughout the day. This is comprehensively put together and the pretty graphs and illustrations of your day broken down into stress/ recovery/ active meant for some interesting reading – when your stress levels are lowest, your work productivity will be good. This whole package is designed to get people performing better at work and teaching themselves to ‘Prevent before the event’ and increase productivity (I’ll leave that side of the sale to our partner).
I will completely honest I can’t stop myself eating food that prevents my bodyfat coming below 15%, so I hardly feel I’m ready to be a lifestyle coach. My training that I was due on with a lifestyle coach to implement this system didn’t leave me feeling overjoyed. I don’t mind telling someone to have a break from work….. but ‘zen time’, yoga and relaxation are not in my repertoire of coaching. After yesterday’s experience, now I can’t wait. Having spoken to the coach leading my training, he assures me that it is not about ‘performing headstands in the office’ it’s about learning when to cut loose, flip down the laptop screen and walk out of the office for 10 mins to grab a drink and some fresh air. It’s also using the data to analyse what elevates the blood pressure and looking at ways to reduce it.
Our ‘Know your Numbers’ assessment is a basic blood pressure, resting heart rate and bodyfat test that we offer our members. Yesterday I had six familiar faces on this session. They are gym regulars, hard trainers and consistent in their exercise regime. All six were city centre professionals over a cross section of sectors.
Your blood pressure is key indicator of your CV health. It relates to your diet and your fitness levels. The key reading is your diastolic blood pressure and here is a guideline of the readings
- 80+ Pre High Blood Pressure
- 90+ Cause for concern
- 100+ GP Refferral
- 110+ – call the doctor!!!
Yesterday I was a little ‘through the motions’ with the Blood Pressure tests, I didn’t anticipate any of my group been above 90. So much so that I missed the obligatory talk about stress factors affecting blood pressure. Six tests later and half of my group were in excess of 90, with one over 100 and one over 110!!!!
This was a cause for concern. Now when you take someone’s Blood Pressure at 7pm, they’ve usually had some downtime from work? For your blood pressure to be up at 118, you’ve had some cumulative stress throughout that day and consequently can’t be very productive at work. After managing to avoid the temptation to call an ambulance I spoke to the group and learnt more about the ‘Monday from Hell’ that three of the group had encountered at work. My clients job is what enables them to fund their lifestyle and gym membership. Managing stress at work will ensure they prevent before the event and improve productivity. I’d love to get some data from their day to see what spiked their blood pressure and look at ways to reduce it. As I learn more I will share with you guys.
Have a zen Tuesday. Flip down the screen and go for a walk. Stress is a killer.