More often than not, new year's resolutions are commonly associated with fitness aspirations to the point where we can seem a little overdone, but if there’s any time to get into shape - now is a better time than any. With 2021 starting with much uncertainty due to the epidemic, lockdown can return at any time and staying healthy through it all can provide a huge boost in confidence and mood. Here are a few tips to help you reach your fitness goals in 2021.
Decide What Kind of “Fit” You Want To Be
Being healthy has so much to it and people decide to begin their fitness lifestyle for drastically different reasons. Whether it’s for dopamine release in the form of jogging or getting cut to impress your friends - the regime that you’ll commit to will vary dramatically. For those who are keen on long distance exercises like running, swimming or cycling; it’s important to note that endurance doesn’t come overnight - especially for beginners. Conditioning the body will take time and dedication, which starts with untimed distance milestones.
On the other hand, if you’re looking to put on muscle - bodyweight exercises and weights are your go to. The troublesome part about embarking on this journey is the possible expenditure on equipment to diversify your routine as much as possible. It doesn’t have to be fancy by any means, but having a solid plethora of options can help you mix it up every few weeks.
Alternatively, just wanting to be active is a far simpler goal that can easily be achieved with fun activities. Picking up sports like basketball or football are classic pastimes that enables you to bring people together (keep safety distancing rules in mind). Learning a brand new skill set on top of working on stamina is a stellar option to ease into fitness.
Easing into an Active lifestyle
More applicable to beginners, easing into fitness can be initially intimidating. It is difficult to compartmentalise exercises to JUST being a hobby, as result-oriented activities almost always require practice. With you’re tight for time, classes are a good way to start because you will be guided by experienced instructors, and booking classes will make it harder to cancel! Ideally, training between three to four times a week will condition your body to adapt, even if it is tough at the start. If the frequency is too much to handle initially, HIIT workouts are a great start. Even if done twice a week, HIIT guarantees intensity in small sessions that last between15 to 45 minutes. Although not optimal, it is something to consider if you are drowning in other responsibilities.
Also read: Mental fitness is also important: Mominul
Unfortunately, dieting is a vital component that goes hand in hand with fitness and training. For weight loss and even staying in shape. It’ll help with muscle building and weight loss dramatically. If it’s difficult to go cold turkey, we recommend trying to ration out junk food to one meal every two days to start with and slowly transition to having junk food only on weekends. When you are comfortable with your new meal plan, the ultimate goal is to condense all the unhealthy delights to one dedicated cheat day (or even meal). Dieting is half the battle and even mild alterations in fitness and in food intake can give you results in a few months.
Maintaining the Active Lifestyle
Once you’ve settled into a relatively consistent workout schedule and make some changes to your diet, it’s inevitable that you’ll lose some steam in a couple of months. One of the most effective ways to avoid this is by switching up your workouts ever so often to keep things interesting. If you’re going for weight loss, long distance workouts can turn into HIIT, yoga, sports and more.
Having a training partner is another way to keep your head in the game. Nothing beats solid accountability from a partner when procrastination starts to hit. The tricky part about this strategy is if either party decides to postpone, rescheduling will start to snowball if all workouts are meant to be done together. Once again, being committed to classes is a slightly safer way to avoid straying away. Lastly, clever scheduling can bring you far if there are certain hours in the day you could slot your workouts in effectively. Sacrificing precious time you could spend with loved ones may sting a little at first, but is necessary for long-term commitment. It is advised to go for alternate days of exercise to let your body have the rest it needs.
Stop waiting for a miracle drug: A Boston University doctor says a sufficient amount of vitamin D can cut the risk of catching coronavirus by 54%.
“People have been looking for the magic drug or waiting for the vaccine and not looking for something this simple,” said Dr Michael Holick, professor of medicine, physiology and biophysics at Boston University School of Medicine, reports Bostom Herald.
Holick and his colleagues studied blood samples from Quest Diagnostics of more than 190,000 Americans from all 50 states and found that those who had deficient levels of vitamin D had 54% higher COVID positivity compared to those with adequate levels of vitamin D in the blood.
The risk of getting coronavirus continued to decline as vitamin D levels increased, the study, published in the Public Library of Science One peer-reviewed journal shows.
“The higher your vitamin D status, lower was your risk,” Holick said.
Many people are vitamin D-deficient because there are only small amounts in food, Holick said. Most vitamin D comes from sun exposure and many are deprived, especially during winter months.
But the sunshine vitamin is easy to find and relatively cheap in drug stores, and taking vitamin D pills comes at no risk. “It’s perfectly safe,” Holick said.
“It’s considered to be, by many, the nutrient of the decade,” Holick said.
COVID-19 positivity is strongly associated with vitamin D levels in the blood, a relationship that stayed the same across different races, sexes and age ranges, the study states.
Vitamin D suppresses excessive cytokine release that can present as a cytokine storm, a common cause of COVID-related morbidity and mortality.
A deficiency in the nutrient alters the immune system, making one more likely to get upper respiratory infections, Holick said.
Throughout the pandemic, people of color have been disproportionately affected by coronavirus, experiencing a higher risk of acquiring it and having serious complications, according to the Centers for Disease Control.
Holick’s study examined the ZIP codes of people of color and found patients from predominantly Black and Hispanic ZIP codes had lower levels of vitamin D and were also more likely to have coronavirus than in patients from predominantly white, non-Hispanic ZIP codes.
The average adult needs around 2,000 units of vitamin D a day, Holick said. He said he’s been taking 6,000 units a day for decades and is in great health.
Several other studies on vitamin D have shown its benefits to the immune system.
Research published with the National Institutes of Health showed people with lower vitamin D levels were more likely to self-report a recent upper respiratory tract infection than those with sufficient levels.
Another study of more than 11,000 participants published in the British Medical Journal found vitamin D supplementation reduced the risk of acute respiratory tract infection among all participants.
“Vitamin D definitely improves your overall immunity to fight infections,” Holick said.
Update: A Brigham and Women’s Hospital study will test to see if vitamin D can lessen the severity of coronavirus symptoms and reduce the chance of becoming infected with the illness in a nationwide, placebo-controlled trial.
Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy (BSA) virtually inaugurated a month-long cultural festival on Sunday, initiating live cultural shows in 10 Upazilas across the country that will run till January 31.
The festival is featuring two-day cultural programmes in each Upazila where artistes from Upazila level are scheduled to showcase their cultural performances for one hour, district-based artistes will perform for 30 minutes and BSA acrobatic troupe will perform for 30 minutes.
A virtual inauguration ceremony was held on Sunday at BSA’s official Facebook page in the afternoon. Presided by BSA director general Liaquat Ali Lucky, the virtual inauguration ceremony was joined by Jatiya Sangsad chief whip Noor-E-Alam Chowdhury as its chief guest.
The festival was inaugurated by Simeen Hussain Rimi MP, Chairman of the Standing Committee on Cultural Affairs.
Secretary of the Ministry of Cultural Affairs Md Badrul Arefin, Madaripur District Commissioner Dr Rahima Khatun, Upazila Nirbahi Officer (UNO) of Shibchar Upazila in Madaripur Md Asaduzzaman and Chittagong District Shilpakala Academy's District Cultural Officer Md Moslem Uddin attended the inaugural ceremony as special guests.
According to BSA's schedule, the programmes will be held at Shibchar upazila in Madaripur district on January 4 and 5, Kapasia upazila in Gazipur on January 13 and 14, Nawabganj upazila in Dhaka district on January 22 and 23, Domar upazila in Nilphamari district and Bhandaria upazila in Pirojpur district on January 25 and 26, Melandaha upazila in Jamalpur district on January 27 and 28, Rangunia upazila in Chattogram district and Kaharole upazila in Dinajpur district on January 29 and 30, Dumuria upazila in Khulna district and Matlab upazila in Chandpur district on January 30 and 31.
Earlier, the announcement of the festival was made by BSA director general Liaquat Ali Lucky at a press briefing held at the National Art Gallery conference room of the Academy on Saturday.
Eminent novelist Rabeya Khatun passed away in the city on Sunday at the age of 85.
According to her family sources, Rabeya Khatun breathed her last at her Banani residence due to old-age complications.
Her body was taken to Bangla Academy premises at 12 pm on Monday and then her body was taken to the Channel-i premise at 3 pm where a namaz-e-janaza took place.
Then the novelist was buried at the Banani Graveyard after Asr prayers.
Rabyea Khatun was born to Maulavi Mohammad Mulluk Chand and Hamida Khatun on December 27, 1935 in Bikrampur in the then British India (now Munshiganj District, Bangladesh),
In her illustrious career spanning over 60 years, Rabeya Khatun wrote over 50 novels and more than 400 short-stories featuring versatile topics. She also wrote a handful of travel blogs.
Khatun's first story Proshno was published in weekly ‘Juger Dabi’ magazine and her novel ‘Rajarbagh’ was published in Begum magazine.
She wrote her first novel Madhumati in 1963, depicting the handloom artists’ struggles in a fictional narrative, which cemented her position as a novelist in the country.
Ekattorer Noy Maash (1990) is one of her most significant creations which she wrote as a memoir of the War of Liberation in 1971.
Three of her books were adopted for feature films - Kokhono Megh Kokhono Brishti (2003), Megher Pore Megh (2004) and Madhumati (2011).
Khatun also worked in Khawatin magazine edited by Jahanara Imam. She worked as the editor of the literature section of the magazine ‘Cinema’ along with legendary filmmaker Zahir Raihan and later became the editor of monthly ‘Angana’ in the 1950s.
For her immense contributions in Bengali literature, Rabeya Khatun was awarded Bangla Academy Literary Award in 1973, Ekushey Padak in 1993 and Independence Day Award in 2017.
Rabeya Khatun married ATM Fazlul Haque, a journalist, critic and filmmaker on July 23, 1,952 (passed away in 1990).
Her son Faridur Reza Sagar is the current managing director of Impress Telefilm Limited and Channel-i, daughter Keka Ferdousi is a noted chef and television cooking show host, another son Farhadur Reza Probal is an architect and her youngest daughter Farhana Kakoly is a homemaker.
The 106th birth anniversary of art maestro Zainul Abedin is being observed today (Tuesday).
The creative genius was born on December 29, 1914, in Kishoreganj and went on to become the man behind the establishment of the Faculty of Fine Arts of Dhaka University and the Folk Art Museum in Sonargaon, Narayanganj.
Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, his birth anniversary is being celebrated with a small number of programmes. Dhaka University’s Faculty of Fine Arts will arrange a virtual edition of Zainul Festival today.
The virtual event, including placing a floral wreath at the grave of the Shilpacharya by the Dhaka University vice-chancellor and faculty members at 10am followed by a virtual photography and art exhibition on the life and works of Zainul Abedin, was broadcast on the Fine Arts Faculty website www.fineart-du.com.
There will also be a virtual exhibition in collaboration with ARTCON in 3D Virtual Reality technology, featuring works by the prominent artists of the subcontinent along with the artists from the Faculty of Fine Arts, Dhaka University.
Historically known for his sketches of Bengal famine in 1943, Zainul developed his passion for art in his childhood on the banks of Brahmaputra River. He completed his graduation from the Government Art School, Kolkata in 1932. He left Kolkata and permanently returned to Bangladesh (then East Pakistan), his motherland, just after the partition of the Indian subcontinent in 1947.
Zainul then actively worked behind the establishment of Dhaka Art Institute and became its principal in 1949. The institute later became today’s Faculty of Fine Arts.
The institute became the hub of fine arts practices in the then East Pakistan and actively participated in historical foundation events of independent Bangladesh such as the 1952 Language Movement and 1971 Liberation War under the artistic leadership of Zainul.
He willingly went on retirement from the Dhaka Art Institute in 1967 and was conferred the honorary title of Shilpacharya (great master of fine arts) by the institute.
Zainul received a two-year training from Slade School of Fine Art in London and began a new style of art called the 'Bengali style' featuring folk art forms with their geometric shapes including the usage of semi-abstract representation and primary colours. However, he lacked the sense of perspective, realising the limitations of folk art, and went back to nature, rural life and the daily struggles of people to make art that would be realistic but modern in appearance, thus being the pioneer of modern artistic style in the subcontinent.
He visited Palestinian camps in Syria and Jordan in 1970 and made 60–70 paintings of the refugees there, adding just another example of his calibre as a modern, international artist.
Known for the simple yet majestic projection of natural and social hazards, Zainul painted the 1970 Bhola cyclone that devastated then East Pakistan, portraying the effect of the cyclone through his painting ‘Monpura’.
As a fond lover of folk arts, Zainul formed Charu O Karu Shilpi Sangram Parishad and also collected a large number of traditional crafts, ceramic works, and nakshi kanthas in his lifetime which he preserved through founding the Folk Art Museum at Sonargaon, Narayanganj in 1975.
He also founded the Zainul Abedin Sangrahashala, a gallery of his own works at the Shaheeb Quarter Park on the bank of Brahmaputra River in Mymensingh the same year.
“Shilpacharya Zainul Abedin has cemented his legacy as the greatest artist of Bangladesh who got himself ecologically balanced in riverine Bangladesh. He portrayed the nature of Bengal through his imaginative inner eyes that explored more than outer vision,” renowned art critic Moinuddin Khaled told UNB.
Further explaining with examples, he added, “Many of us know about the infamous 1943 famine in the greater Bengal which happened due to the heinous acts of the British government, and we know about the havoc of that period because of Zainul’s artworks which perfectly portrayed the social situation at that time.”
In 1973, Zainul received an honorary D.Litt from Delhi University. He was declared National Professor of Bangladesh in 1975. NASA honoured the iconic artist through naming a crater on the planet Mercury after the painter, called the 'Abedin Crater' in 2009.
Shilpacharya Zainul Abedin passed away on May 28, 1976 after suffering from lung cancer.