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It’s 5.30pm on a Sunday evening and I’m in an old church in Bristol. Long ropes dangle from the ceiling as I stand, 6 feet above the ground, on a trapeze. I lean forward, one leg extended behind me. I crouch slowly and sit down on the bar. I lean back and let go with one hand, twisting my body, my legs stretched out straight, toes pointed.
In that moment I feel powerful, alive, and only vaguely concerned about how sweaty my palm feels on the rope. In my mind I look like this and in lieu of photographic evidence I defy anyone to prove otherwise:
Last week, in our first session of a five week aerial skills course, we were on the hoop. With the hoop I felt about as graceful as a badly coordinated toddler trying to zip up a coat. On the trapeze though, (once the instructor has helped me get on), I am a goddess, full of energy and grace.
Now I’m not saying that two weeks of drinking Ensure Max Protein everyday has turned me into a world class circus acrobat, ready to fly through the air, confident in my strength and power, but it has made me a little less tired, given me a little more energy, and that can’t be a bad thing, not when according to research*, around 10.5 million of us in the UK feel exhausted from our ‘always on’ lives.
I don’t know if it’s age, or the midlife unravelling or what it is really, but a lot lately, (the last couple of years if I’m honest), I’ve just felt pretty tired. Worn out with having to DO everything, by myself, all the time. Tired of being always responsible, generating all my own work, having to remember to reply to my Instagram messages and get the car MOTed and have Belle’s eyes tested and, and, and…
What’s ironic too is that the very things that might help you feel less exhausted, like hanging out with friends or making time for regular exercise, are the things you put off, the things that get squeezed out. The exercise one is particularly tough because when you feel tired already the last thing you want to do is lift weights or pop out for a casual game of tennis or something, but as counter-intuitive as it feels at the time, exercise is one of the most important things you can do to tackle tiredness, especially exercise that builds muscle.
I knew that muscle health can deteriorate quite quickly in middle age – we actually lose 8% of our muscles every decade from the age of 40 – but I hadn’t really appreciated that poor muscle health is linked to that mind-numbing, day to day tiredness, not just your ability to lift heavy boxes in and out of the attic. Protein acts as the building blocks for our muscles, supplying the energy we need in the form of amino acids.
All of this is why, after I’d taken Abbott’s tiredness assessment and was having a chat with one of their nutrition experts, doing more weight bearing exercise and increases my protein intake, (which generally could do better), where two of my top recommendations for helping me feel less tired and unleash my inner circus entertainer.
Ensure Max Protein has been developed by Abbott to specifically target the improvement of muscle health and is one really easy way to get extra protein into your daily diet. It contains 30g of high quality protein, 26 vitamins and minerals and actually tastes good too, which is always a bonus. It’s very versatile, so you can choose to drink it at a particular time of the day if you know you have a weak spot mid-afternoon for example.
I’ve been having a play with it over the last two weeks, sometimes having it at around 2pm, just when I feel like I might fall asleep at my desk, and sometimes blending it with a banana as a breakfast smoothie. One of the other points that Abbott’s nutritionist highlighted for me as an area for improvement was to eat breakfast more regularly and as I really don’t fancy anything solid in the mornings, a protein based smoothie is an easy and energy boosting way for me to start the day.
Two weeks in and I do feel like I have more energy. I’m not feeling like my brain is switching off as early in the day and generally I feel a little lighter in my step. Even in the week between hoop and the trapeze class I noticed a difference and definitely didn’t feel as exhausted by the end of the hour. (This could just be that in one week I have become an expert, but I doubt it.)
If you’re plagued with exhaustion and day to day tiredness then it’s worth taking the tiredness assessment and giving Ensure Max Protein a try. You could feel less tired in just two weeks** and then who knows, the circus world is your oyster.
Next week is silks. I predict great things.
Find out more about how you can feel less tired with Ensure Max Protein.
*Market research conducted on behalf of Abbott by Opinion Research of 2004 people in October 2019. Resulted weighted and representative of UK adult population.
**Online interviews with 452 US adults aged over 40, who consumed at least one bottle of Ensure Max Protein on at least 4 days a week for 4 weeks. 75% of people self-reported feeling less tired in 2 weeks.