2020, it's the year someone recently likened to a hula hoop made of barbed wire, and perhaps quite appropriately. With stay-at-home measures and offers of free entertainment TV, it's no wonder it hasn't been a year conducive to getting regular physical activity. Yet while masks and social isolation measures have been put in place to keep us healthy, the inability to get out may be doing the opposite for some. "According to the well-respected Cleveland Clinic, cutting back on physical activity can take a toll on muscle mass and increase body fat in just two weeks," states Joy Stephenson-Laws (founder of Proactive Health Labs, a national nonprofit health and wellness information company).
Furthermore, she says, "It may be tempting for you to believe that if you don’t have a weight issue, you are in the clear and don’t need as much exercise, or any, physical activity to stay healthy. The truth is that not being physically active increases everyone’s risk of developing diabetes, heart disease, stroke, depression and certain cancers, just to name a few. In fact, someone who is mostly sedentary has an up to 30% increased risk of death compared to people who move regularly." But the good news is that individuals who get back on a gradually progressive fitness plan "can begin to reverse the damage of inactivity pretty quickly."
Cleveland clinic also states other physiological changes that typically occur over even brief periods of inactivity (quote):
• A rise in blood pressure, especially for those who use exercise as a way to lower their blood pressure
• Post meal blood sugar levels remaining elevated
• Reduced metabolic rate, which can lead to unwanted weight gain
• The heart losing the efficiency it built up with exercise and physical activity – it can start losing its ability to handle extra blood flow by up to five percent in 24 hours, and resting heartbeat also starts increasing by up to four to 15 beats per minute within a month of reducing physical activity
• Cholesterol levels may increase
• A decline in VO2 max (or the body’s ability to effectively use oxygen) so drastically that most of the aerobic capacity gained over the previous two or three months is lost within two to four weeks
• Loss of muscle mass, research indicates that muscles begin to atrophy with as little as 72 hours of inactivity (this includes the heart muscles, and those that operate the lungs).
So what's a person to do it they can't get outside? We'd like to suggest indoor exercise, and no, it doesn't have to be jazzercise! Try any number of HIIT exercise routines. One of the most famous in recent years is the "7 Minute HIIT Workout" that has been shown to significantly improve health and well-being. Buy a treadmill. An exercise hula hoop, weighted for adults. A jump rope. Or even try isometric contractions and seated leg lifts, or walking in place. The point is to keep those muscles active, the body moving, and keep the lungs and heart active and engaged too. Need more help or ideas? We're happy to talk to you!
NOTE: For extra safety, always talk to you physician before beginning any fitness routine. We're not here to diagnose, prescribe, or attempt to cure anything. Use the included information at your own discretion and liability.
(Quoted information from this month's Massage Magazine article, "Are You Back At Work? You Need To Get Back In Shape, Too — Here's Why")
Many massage providers offer Aromatherapy treatments like we do (see more below) and we want those who suffer from fragrance (aroma/scent/chemical/other) sensitivities, natural or synthetic, to be aware that we are willing to work with you! We do regularly utilize essential oils in our treatment room, and on rare occasion, synthetic fragrances too (such as in cleaning products or some body products). If you have a particularly strong sensitivity, please let us know and we can make scheduling arrangements to help ensure that you will have limited exposure from other sessions, or between cleaning/sanitizing.
Some essential oils are purported to be particularly beneficial for combating airborne and surface borne germs such as bacteria and viruses, like mint (menthol), lavender, thyme, tea tree, eucalyptus, clove and citrus, just to name a few. If you are sensitive to one particular fragrance/oil, you can always opt for a different oil in any Aromatherapy Massage session (remember though that many of our standard options are pre-blended). BONUS! Hot packs are included with any aromatherapy massage, and are a great way to bring blood and virus fighting compounds to susceptible areas like the lungs. We also offer straight hydrotherapy for detox and immunity, among other things!
$85 (60 min) or $115 (90 min):
“Sunny Isles” (uplifting, energizing, revitalizing), a tantalizing blend of tropical citrus oils to brighten the mood and invigorate the mind.
“Log Cabin” (mental “getaway”, balancing, mental clarity, emotional reset), an earthy, “warm” wintergreen (wintermint) fragrance featuring muscle relaxing rosemary and mint oils.
“Sweet Siesta” (calming, soothing, restorative), calming lavender and chamomile are brightened ever so slightly with notes of orange in this relaxing oil blend.
"French Vanilla" (warm vanilla scent).
“Jasmine” (soft Jasmine and gentle citrus) while supplies last.
"Prossage (Muscle Mender) Massage" (deep penetrating, muscle relaxing, tension melting), a powerful, strong menthol (mint) base is balanced ever so slightly with relaxing lavender for a deeply therapeutic, intensely relaxing session. Contains lanolin. (Typically used only on problem areas in any deep tissue sessions at no cost, if you would like a full body Prossage session with deeply soothing hot packs included, please upgrade to a Prossage Aromatherapy Massage session.)
NOTE: Essential oils purported uses and benefits may or may not be validated by the FDA. We make no actual claims to heal, cure, or otherwise treat disease here but base the above statements solely on historical use and application, and share as a matter of education only. Use the information at your own discretion and at your own risk. Remember, there are myriads of variables that may affect the efficacy of any natural preventative therapy or remedy, including current health status, environmental factors, stress level, and more. Prevention is always worth a pound of cure, but you may need to implement more than one strategy at a time to ensure optimal results from your self-care or wellness regime.
"Action is a law of our being. Every organ of the body has its appointed work, upon the performance of which its development and strength depend. The normal action of all the organs gives strength and vigor, while the tendency of disuse is toward decay and death. Bind up an arm, even for a few weeks, then free it from its bands, and you will see that it is weaker than the one you have been using moderately during the same time. Inactivity produces the same effect upon the whole muscular system. Inactivity is a fruitful cause of disease. Exercise quickens and equalizes the circulation of the blood, but in idleness the blood does not circulate freely, and the changes in it, so necessary to life and health, do not take place. The skin, too, becomes inactive. Impurities are not expelled as they would be if the circulation had been quickened by vigorous exercise, the skin kept in a healthy condition, and the lungs fed with plenty of pure, fresh air. This state of the system throws a double burden on the excretory organs, and disease is the result."
People often have difficulty with pain that they have no known injury to point the finger at. Many times it is nutrition related. A great deal of the rest of the time it is simply the muscles and other tissues crying out for exercise. A simple walk, lifting weights, or isometric contraction can help relieve the discomfort.
"When the abuse of health is carried so far that sickness results, the sufferer can often do for himself what no one else can do for him. The first thing to be done is to ascertain the true character of the sickness and then go to work intelligently to remove the cause. If the harmonious working of the system has become unbalanced by overwork, overeating, or other irregularities, do not endeavor to adjust the difficulties by adding a burden of poisonous medicines.
Intemperate eating is often the cause of sickness, and what nature most needs is to be relieved of the undue burden that has been placed upon her. In many cases of sickness, the very best remedy is for the patient to fast for a meal or two, that the overworked organs of digestion may have an opportunity to rest. A fruit diet for a few days has often brought great relief to brain workers. Many times a short period of entire abstinence from food, followed by simple, moderate eating, has led to recovery through nature's own recuperative effort. An abstemious diet for a month or two would convince many sufferers that the path of self-denial is the path to health."
At the turn of the last century countless revelations in health reform we're given to Ellen White, many of which still astound doctors today as they came long before the rest of the world caught on to their validity. We can all be thankful that a return to health is often as simple as returning to better lifestyle principles.
Have you tried intermittent fasting? Have you ever done a short or long term cleanse? If you're interested in trying one for improved health, and even reversal of worrisome health conditions, let us know, we are taking an interest inventory for several lifestyle classes we're planning on offering in the near future which will include methods of illness prevention we personally used to get, and to stay healthy, and SO much more!! Send us a message here, or give us a call and let us know you're interested 308-432-4558.
YES, WE'RE OPEN!!
Official word from the NE DHHS came regarding the state DHM issued for 05-04-2020, allowing massage therapists, salons and other such places the "go-ahead" to reopen today. If you missed our previous post, there are changes and new requirements you need to know about due to COVID-19. For example, MASKS ARE REQUIRED FOR ALL PARTIES VISITING OUR ESTABLISHMENT NOW, so please be sure to bring your preferred mask when you come. Also, various service and gift offerings are temporarily changing. Visit www.thegreatescape4u.com, or visit through this link: https://bit.ly/2W7yNyk for more critical information.
You may also see the latest Nebraska State DHM information here http://dhhs.ne.gov/P…/COVID-19-Directed-Health-Measures.aspx
"We take your health and safety very seriously (that has never changed)."
Yes, Coronavirus has affected our operations, like all of the country. We are trying to keep our information here short and sweet so as not to overwhelm, so if you need more details, please feel free to call us 308-432-4558.
Until further notice, all of our standard policies and procedures will be trumped by the Nebraska Sate DHM (Directed Health Measures) in order to stay in compliance with applicable laws as far as possible. Thank you all for your continued support and patience as we collectively work through this.
We are presently implementing some changes to our illness and operational policies, at least until the threat of this pandemic has passed. Here's what you need to know:
Please remember, as alternative healthcare professionals, our policies and practices have always been reflective of our desire to promote and maintain the health and safety of our clients (and we will continue to do so). We have always implemented the Department of Health's business practice guidelines and standards for hygiene and sanitation to minimize customer's exposure to ANY kind of communicable illness during your visits here.
So, if you have been free of symptoms of communicable illness. we are still planning to see you for your scheduled treatments (unless the governing bodies tell us not to do so). We will still be washing our hands like crazy (as always), and properly sanitizing surfaces, so you can rest easy -- as always!
For all who are home due to illness, and those simply avoiding contact with others during this time, we would be happy to share thoughts on home care and immunity boosting techniques.
*NOTICE: We're not doctors, nor do we diagnose, cure, or prescribe for anything. All of the information contained herein is for educational purposes only. Use at your own discretion. The efficacy of essential oils and other treatments listed above may not have been evaluated or supported by the FDA (even though they may have been used by naturopathic advocates for centuries with reported benefits). If you believe you are sick, visit your primary care provider, as always.
Did you know that over half to upwards of three quarters of the body's entire immune system finds its home in your intestines!? It's true. Not only is our colon (aka: "gut"; intestinal tract) critical for digestion, it is essential for immunity too! 😷🤒
Initially researchers thought that the presence of both the high concentration of the body's immune system and the overabundance of bacteria and other microorganisms in the intestines was an indication of antagonistic forces needed to keep the body in check. In recent decades however, the discovery has been made that this, in fact, is not the case, but rather the presence of both is actually due to a symbiosis of sorts. In fact, the hyper-colonization of micro-organisms, in your large intestine (colon) especially, is part of what helps keep your immune system functioning at peak level -- or at least it does if you treat it well. You see, the bacteria in your colon help break down nutrients, build nutrients out of plant "chemicals", fight off invading pathogens, and many other things!
"So, how can I take good care of my intestinal tract," you may be wondering. I'm glad you asked! In delving into the subject you may find yourself overwhelmed by words, phrases or acronyms like: "intestinal flora", PRO-biotics, PRE-biotics, polysaccharides, seroconversion, and LAB (Lactobacillus sp.), among other things. The truth of the matter is it really doesn't have to get that complicated for the general population, unless of course you want it to be.
All you REALLY need to know is that your body, and your intestinal "microbiome" thrives best on fresh, raw fruits, nuts, seeds, legumes and vegetables as the core of a healthy diet. Why? FIBER (aka: prebiotics and "roughage"), along with the accompanying wealth of live enzymes, phytochemicals and nutrients. Did you know that there have been studies done comparing the overall health of countries where fiber-rich diets are the core of a people's "nutritional economy" versus populations where fiber is almost wholly replaced by fiberless eating. The inherent lack of fiber (and associated phytochemicals, enzymes and nutrients) found in the latter type of a people group's nutritional economy correlates directly with unhealthy microorganisms dominating the intestinal system, and as a result an increase in many of the diseases of our 21st century!
"But I don't like vegetables," you may be saying to yourself. Did you know that by introducing new foods to your diet, little by little over the course of a few weeks or months, your dietary preferences can readily change? It's true! How so? Your body will learn to associate the tastes of healthy, fresh, new foods with the input of nutrients, phytochemicals, and live enzymes it desperately needs. Sometimes it is merely a matter of trying different methods of preparing these foods in ways that appeal to you. The EXCELLENT news is that the internet is currently riddled with trillions, maybe gazillions of recipes in the fiber-rich category that are good for you!
We like to keep things as simple as possible -- we believe creation was intended to be that way. So here's a brief synopsis of what you need to know to keep your colon healthy (it's associated microbiome), and therein your overall immunity.
MY HEALTHY GUT LIST 🌱🍊🌶️🌽🍠🍌🍈🌿
1) EAT LOTS OF FIBER RICH FOODS
Many experts agree that upwards of 80% of your diet should contain some form of fiber.
2) VARY YOUR FIBER INTAKE
Eating Kraft mac-n-cheese at ever meal with a glass full of Metamucil to wash it down is not the same thing as a healthy serving of broccoli, carrots, olives and multi-grain crackers with a little added dressing. Aim for a "rainbow" of fiber-rich colors throughout the week.
3) INCLUDE QUALITY PROBIOTICS WHEN NECESSARY, OR EVEN REGULARLY
Watch out for over-the-counter brands here as many of the probiotic bacteria are dead-on-the-shelf before you ever buy them. Instead opt for refrigerated versions with a decent variety of bacterium, always checking the expiration date and pitching them when time runs out. Or better yet, opt to make your own kimchi, sauerkraut, or coconut yogurt 😋. (P.S. You can test the viability of any probiotic by emptying a few capsules worth as the starter culture for a batch of homemade organic yogurt; if your liquid doesn't congeal, it's likely because the bacteria are already dead.)
4) AVOID "DEAD" FOODS AND CHEMICALS Anything you put in (or even on) your body can impact the health of your intestinal microbiome, and therein your immunity. Dead foods include virtually anything that is not in it's "whole food" form, meaning it has been divided, stripped of nutrients or fiber, had a wealth of chemicals or preservatives added to keep it "fresh", or cooked to death in any variety of ways. If it comes in a tell-tale crinkle bag, has a huge list of unpronounceable ingredients, is likely doused with chemicals during it's growth or manufacture, or is even simply laden with refined sugar, salt or fat, try to get it out of your diet as fast as you can -- or at least only consume such things as a rare treat. And after a round of medications (for example, antibiotics), or a nibble on a bag of junkfood, it is wise to give your body a healthy dose of probiotics again.
We all want to be healthy, and if you follow the above guidelines (doctor permitting, of course), even if you're doing little else, you will be off to a pretty good start. Remember though, if your diet is chemically laden, ripe with artificial ingredients, low in fresh, nutrient dense, whole-food forms of fiber (or any fiber), or you are on a wealth of medications and have a job in a chemicals factory, popping a few probiotic pills and adding a couple tablespoons of flaxmeal to a sugary bowl of corn puffs every day may be somewhat like aiming a garden hose at a raging house fire. This truly is an area that needs our best commitment. Your gut requires the best it can get, including proper nutrition, exercise (oxygen and vital blood flow), cleansing (via water and roughage) and rest (adequate sleep and fasting).
If you're not sure where to start, but would like more information or recipes, we'd be happy to share some of our favorites!
NOTICE: Please remember that we are not here to diagnose, cure, or prescribe for any illness or disease. Any recommendations provided herein are intended for educational purposes only. If you are in need of medical care, please contact your primary care provider.
Sometimes you have to look for the silver lining in everything. For us and many others we know, being completely shut down for business, this task can seem daunting. But today we had a little chuckle when we found this little silver thread floating about. When you're in our profession for a long while, you tend to forget what it is like to have them (fingernails, that is). So, we'll continue to grow them out, and enjoy them while they're here.
All the fluff aside, we really miss you guys!! We can hardly wait to get back to work... even if the nails have to go! 🤗❤🙏
This is our prayer for you in this reflective season, that you may keep your eyes always upwards in hope, even in the midst of uncertainly.
"May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope."
On Friday we received official word from the State of Nebraska that all massage therapists are also included in the Directed Health Measures (DHM) in order to help thwart the spread of Coronavirus. We know that many of you will still be experiencing pain and discomfort during this time and we can only encourage you to continue in your home care routines: adequate hydration, proper nutrition, exercise (strengthening, stretching, & cardio), quality rest, etc. We hope you'll stay tuned here for news, related updates and more info.
Have a wonderful day and stay safe!
Coronavirus has affected our operations in reference to many of the subjects or services listed herein. Please see our dedicated COVID-19 page for information. Until further notice, all of our standard policies and procedures will be trumped by the Nebraska State DHM (Directed Health Measures) in order to stay in compliance with state law as far as possible. Thank you all for your continued support and patience as we collectively work through this.
Jerri W., LMT, CWC
Licensed Massage Therapist and Certified Wellness Coach with over 25+ years of experience in pain management, relaxation techniques and lifestyle education.
Heather R., LMT, CWC
Certified Wellness Coach and Licensed Massage Therapist with a passion for helping others achieve optimal wellness through healthier living.
NOTICE: The information provided herein is meant for educational purposes only. We accept no liability for your use of the information provided. As always, use your best judgment and if in doubt, please consult your healthcare provider to determine the best course of action for your particular situation.