In our latest Belgian health article Aspria experts detail the benefits of a special check up of your physical state.
Whether you are a seasoned athlete or a novice, there are several ways to keep track of your activity and your health statistics on a daily basis via wearable technologies. So why should you try the AspriaPro Health programme at Aspria Royal La Rasante, Woluwe?
What is Aspria Pro Health?
For Marie, coach and nutrition specialist, it is important to understand from the outset that, this 360°, personalised consultation is neither an examination nor a medical check-up. It’s just a precise and detailed indicator of your current physical state.” For optimal effects on overall fitness, an AspriaPro Health consultation is recommended on a regular basis – as a training progress tracker and as a way to proactively keep a check on important health parameters.
However, it is especially useful at the end of winter, she says – because that is a great time to either resume a specific type of training or to adjust the workout routine in preparation for the warm season.
In-depth check up
The appointment starts with a series of questions (all answers are of course confidential!), based on which Marie is able to determine our general profile. In our conversation, we explore a full range of topics from sleep patterns, diet and digestive problems to fitness activity and training recovery. Once we have completed this lifestyle overview, we can delve into the details.
The next step in the consultation is a physiological assessment. While no substitute for a medical check-up, this assessment is a comprehensive snapshot of our health statistics. Marie goes far beyond measuring our Body Mass Index (BMI). She analyses body fat, the glycaemic index and cholesterol levels. There is also a measurement of VO2 max, the body’s oxygenation capacity during physical activity, and of our antioxidant levels, which we are told is the most effective anti-aging support our body has.
Throughout the analysis, Marie explains the results and provides fitness, nutrition and lifestyle recommendations and key take-aways. The areas we should focus our training on, hydration levels and stress management are all included. It is a real motivation booster. When Marie invites us to do so, it is hard not to rethink some or all of our meals. So as she speaks, we dream of the squash and carrot soup she recommends to boost our antioxidant levels and warm us up after a jog in the forest.
The session also includes a Cardioscan which looks at the body’s resistance to stress and the balance of our two nervous systems. We finish with an analysis of body posture, mobility and the fitness level of the abdominal belt.
At the end of the appointment, the combination of results make up our ‘biological age’. This statistic is an easy way to summarise and visualise our fitness levels in one number, Marie explains: “If the number is lower than your actual age, you will know that your lifestyle choices and your sporting activities have paid off. It’s not only a validation, but it also helps motivate you to continue your efforts.”
When numbers exceed the actual age, the AspriaPro Health programme continues with support from the wellbeing advisors in the Club, including a complete and personalised training programme, but also advice on diet planning and mental health.
The verdict? As we know, true wellbeing requires a 360 degree approach. AspriaPro Health is an easy way to find what is right for you and make sense of your health statistics better than any wearable fitness tracker, because it involves the expertise of professionals.
The doctor’s opinion
To better understand the importance of preparing for a new sports season, Aspria interviewed general practitioner Grégoire Van Brée.
We know that working out is essential. But why, exactly?
If we consider working out in a 360 approach, that is to say as part of a good lifestyle (i.e. eating a balanced diet and getting enough sleep), physical activity allows, among other things, to prevent cardiovascular diseases, which are more frequent in sedentary and overweight people. The World Health Organisation recommends 150 minutes of moderate physical activity per week or 75 minutes of intense workout. These figures are obviously given as an indication. A programme is built according to your age and your predisposition to practise a sport. For people over 65, for instance, targeted muscle strengthening is more important than sustained cardio-training activity.
So to target the expectations of each individual, is the Aspria Pro a good start?
While this appointment obviously does not replace a complete medical check-up, it enables us to measure the level of body fat, the glycaemic index and the level of cholesterol, the VO2max, but also the content of antioxidants in the body. When a trainer creates a customised programme, this data allows him to perfectly target each training session. For an overweight person, resuming a workout routine must be done gently. This is to avoid the risk of injury and therefore to stay motivated in the long term.
In terms of health and general wellbeing, what changes did you notice following the pandemic?
During the pandemic, many people ate and drank more. Some gained weight. We know that excess weight in the stomach promotes poor posture, which can lead to hyperlordosis. Others have spent long hours sitting in front of their computers in unsuitable chairs. We therefore notice postural problems in many patients, as well as a decrease in muscle mass.
How does exercising help with stress management?
When you exercise, you sleep better. But beyond this notion of sleep, cardio-training (through cycling, swimming or running, among others) allows the body to release a maximum level of endorphins, a hormone that gives you a boost. The good news is that if you schedule at least three workout sessions of more than 10 minutes on a weekly basis, after only a few weeks, you can already feel the positive effects on your level of energy and on your overall mental state.
AspriaPro Health is a service available only to Aspria members.