Men's Health Week raises awareness of the health issues that affect men disproportionately and focuses on getting men to become more aware of health problems they may have or could develop and gain the courage to do something about it.
We spoke to Chris Shine, Head of Finance with SGN Natural Gas, who has very personal reasons for looking after his health and fitness and encourages other men to look after themselves too.
Q.Why do you think it is important to promote Men’s Health Week? A. It’s important to maintain health and fitness whatever age or gender you are, but I do think men of a certain age need to be mindful of the risk of heart attacks and strokes if they don’t look after themselves.
My father died of a heart attack in his mid-50s, so it is very important to me to do the best I can to remain fit and healthy for my family. I have two young granddaughters now and I want to be around for as long as possible! Plus, we are all aware that it has never been more important to look after ourselves in order to fight COVID-19.
Q.How do you keep yourself fit & healthy? A. I love to walk, run and I cycle 25 miles three times per week.
My wife and I enjoy walking holidays and to date we have walked 200 miles across the Camino de Santiago trail. It starts at Saint Jean Pied de Port, France, and travels 500 miles through four of Spain’s 15 regions, ending at the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela in Galicia. Our plan is to complete the remaining miles once we are allowed to travel.
Last September my friends and I cycled 400 miles from Cork to Donegal, raising £1800 for Action Cancer. As well as keeping fit the trip was great for my mental health. It was great to set myself a goal and achieve it at the end. It was super being outdoors enjoying the journey laughing with friends.
Q.How would you encourage men to start their health and fitness journey? A. It’s easy to put off exercise, especially when we’re working and busy at home. I started up a Rambling Club in the office. Every Wednesday lunchtime we go for a 30-minute walk to get our heads cleared for the afternoon ahead.
Start small - then build up to more frequent walks. I think it’s much more enjoyable walking with other people or with an audiobook for company.