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ACSM Information On…
Selecting and Effectively UsingHydration for FitnessWater is the most essential component of the human body as it provides an important role in the function of cells. Important functions of waterinclude transportation of nutrients, elimination of waste products, regulation and maintenance of body temperature through sweating,maintenance of blood circulation and pressure, lubrication of joints and body tissues, and facilitation of digestion. More than half of the humanbody is composed of water, and it is impossible to sustain life without it.
important to drink before you feel thirsty A well-rounded physical activity program includes Exercise produces an elevation in body and to drink throughout the day. Thirst is aerobic exercise and strength training exercise, but temperature, which depends on the not a good indicator of hydration and not necessarily in the same session. This blend helps intensity and duration of exercise, should not be used to monitor hydration maintain or improve cardiorespiratory and muscular environmental conditions, clothing worn, fitness and overall health and function. Regularphysical activity will provide more health benefits than and metabolic rate. In order to get rid of One way to check your hydration status is sporadic, high intensity workouts, so choose the excess heat, your body secretes to weigh yourself before and after exercise.
exercises you are likely to enjoy and that you can sweat, which is primarily composed of incorporate into your schedule. The before-exercise measurement is best water and electrolytes such as sodium.
as a nude weight first thing in the morning ACSM's physical activity recommendations for healthy The evaporation of sweat is the primary after urinating. Comparing your body adults, updated in 2011, recommend at least 30 mechanism of heat loss during exercise.
weight before and after exercise can be minutes of moderate-intensity physical activity(working hard enough to break a sweat, but still able Exercise can lead to substantial water and used to estimate your sweat loss and your to carry on a conversation) five days per week, or 20 electrolyte loss from sweat leading to fluid requirements. Any weight loss is likely minutes of more vigorous activity three days per dehydration and, in cases of excessive from fluid loss, so drinking enough to week. Combinations of moderate- and vigorous- fluid intake, hyponatremia (low sodium in replenish these losses will maintain intensity activity can be performed to meet this the blood). However, considerable hydration. The table below shows us that variability exists from person to person over a one percent loss in body weight Examples of typical aerobic exercises are: with regard to sweat loss. Therefore, the indicates dehydration and over five percent fluid and electrolyte requirements needed indicates serious dehydration. These fluid • Running• Stair climbing for the athlete are variable from person to losses need to be replaced.
person as well. If water and electrolytes % Body Weight Change
are not replaced from these losses, the • Cross country skiing athlete will have a decrease in • Swimming.
performance and perhaps an adverse In addition, strength training should be performed a effect on his or her overall health.
minimum of two days each week, with 8-12repetitions of 8-10 different exercises that target all major muscle groups. This type of training can be Thirst is a signal that your body is headed Serious Dehydration >
accomplished using body weight, resistance bands, toward dehydration. Therefore, it is free weights, medicine balls or weight machines. Another way to check hydration status is Carbohydrate consumption helps to STAYING ACTIVE PAYS OFF!
the urine color test. A large amount of sustain and improve exercise performance Those who are physically active tend to live longer, light-colored urine means you are well during high-intensity exercise longer than healthier lives. Research shows that moderate hydrated. The darker the color, the more one hour as well as lower-intensity physical activity – such as 30 minutes a day of brisk dehydrated you are.
exercise for longer periods. You should walking – significantly contributes to longevity. Even a ingest one-half to one liter of a sports person with risk factors like high blood pressure, diabetes or even a smoking habit can gain real drink each hour to maintain hydration.
benefits from incorporating regular physical activity Also, sports drinks should not exceed a into their daily life.
carbohydrate concentration of eight As many dieters have found, exercise can help you stay on a diet and lose weight. What's more – regular HYDRATION BEFORE EXERCISE
exercise can help lower blood pressure, control blood Check your hydration status before sugar, improve cholesterol levels and build stronger, exercise because there is a wide denser bones.
variability in fluid needs for each person. THE FIRST STEP
• Drink 16-20 fluid ounces of water or Before you begin an exercise program, take a fitness sports beverage at least four hours test, or substantially increase your level of activity, before exercise.
make sure to answer the following questions. This • Drink 8-12 fluid ounces of water 10-15 physical activity readiness questionnaire (PAR-Q) will minutes before exercise. help determine if you're ready to begin an exercise routine or program.
Consuming a beverage with sodium (salt) • Has your doctor ever said that you have a heart and/or small meal helps to stimulate thirst condition or that you should participate in physical and retain fluids.
activity only as recommended by a doctor? Dehydration is the loss of fluids and salts • Do you feel pain in your chest during physical HYDRATION DURING EXERCISE
essential to maintain normal body • Drink 3-8 fluid ounces of water every 15- function. Dehydration occurs when the • In the past month, have you had chest pain when 20 minutes when exercising for less than you were not doing physical activity? body loses more fluids than it takes in.
• Do you lose your balance from dizziness? Do you Dehydration can lead to: • Drink 3-8 fluid ounces of a sports ever lose consciousness? • Muscle fatigue beverage (5-8 percent carbohydrate with • Do you have a bone or joint problem that could be • Loss of coordination electrolytes) every 15-20 minutes when made worse by a change in your physical activity? • Inability to regulate body temperature • Is your doctor currently prescribing drugs for your exercising greater than 60 minutes.
• Heat illness (e.g., cramps, heat blood pressure or a heart condition? Do not drink more than one quart/hour exhaustion, heat stroke) • Do you know of any reason you should not during exercise.
• Decreased energy and athletic participate in physical activity? HYDRATION GUIDELINES AFTER
If you answered yes to one or more questions, if you are over 40 years of age and have recently been Moderate caffeine intake does not affect inactive, or if you are concerned about your health, Obtain your body weight and check your hydration status or urine output. However, consult a physician before taking a fitness test or urine to estimate your fluid losses. The alcohol will increase your urine output and substantially increasing your physical activity. If you goal is to correct your losses within two answered no to each question, then it's likely that you decrease hydration.
hours after exercise.
can safely begin exercising.
Enhancing palatability of a fluid will help to • Drink 20-24 fluid ounces of water or PRIOR TO EXERCISE
encourage fluid consumption. This can be sports beverage for every one pound Prior to beginning any exercise program, including the done with proper flavoring, proper salt activities depicted in this brochure, individuals should (sodium) content and drinking a cold seek medical evaluation and clearance to engage in beverage (15-21 degrees Celsius).
Overhydration, also called water activity. Not all exercise programs are suitable for everyone, and some programs may result in injury.
intoxication, is a condition where the body Activities should be carried out at a pace that is Carbohydrates within a sports beverage contains too much water. This can result in comfortable for the user. Users should discontinue help to replenish your sugar (glycogen) behavioral changes, confusion, participation in any exercise activity that causes pain stores and electrolytes help to accelerate drowsiness, nausea/vomiting, weight gain, or discomfort. In such event, medical consultation rehydration. Sports beverages for use muscle cramps, weakness/paralysis and should be immediately obtained.
during prolonged exercise should risk of death.
generally contain four to eight percent In general, overhydration is treated by carbohydrate, 20-30 meq/L of sodium, and limiting your fluid intake and increasing 2-5 meq/L of potassium. The need for the salt (sodium) that you consume. If carbohydrates and electrolytes within overhydration is suspected, you should sports beverages increases with see your doctor for appropriate lab tests prolonged activity. and treatment. You should not consumemore than one liter per hour of fluid.
This brochure was created and updated by Michael R. Simpson, D.O., M.S., and Tom Howard M.D. ACSM grants permission to reproduce this brochure, if it is reproduced in itsentirety without alteration. The text may be reproduced in another publication if it is used in its entirety without alteration and the following statement added: Reprinted withpermission of the American College of Sports Medicine. Copyright 2011 American College of Sports Medicine. This brochure is a product of ACSM's Consumer InformationCommittee.

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