SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder) Ironman Triathlon

SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder)
To prevent and overcome Seasonal Affective disorder (SAD) now a commonly recognised winter depression due to reduced levels of natural sun light. Northern hemisphere people are affected from October to April while southern hemisphere people are affected from April to October.

We tend to eat and sleep more. More sleep can actually make us irritable and eating too much can make us feel sluggish and add to our waist line which has a negative mental attitude, also poor concentration can be caused by SAD.
We seem to have less energy “Get up & go” less need to go outside and get real sun light.
You start to feel depressed in the fall and then feel better again in the spring. Athletes you spend a lot of time outdoors in the summer also tend to notice mood swings in the winter when they are mostly inside.
Only about 25 of people suffering from SAD need treatment.Woman report feeling SAD than men, often SAD starts in young adults and can come back every autumn.

Appetite - Increased appetite with cravings for starchy foods like pasta potatoes and bread.
Concentration – Difficult to focus on normal tasks and remember.
Depression – feel unhappy or down.Lethargy -Lack of interest in doing fun things.
Mood – happy then sad for no reason in a short period of time.
Premenstrual - symptoms worse
Sleep – Difficulty in sleeping and waking up and more difficult to get out of bed.
Sex – Reduced sexual desire.
Tired – Feel slow or tend to be tired than normal.
Weight – Increased weight.

This happens because when it gets light in the morning the part of the brain called the hypothalamus stops producing our sleep hormone called melatonin.
So without this hormone it causes us to be groggy feeling and lethargy from the moment we get up. The SAD lights that increase their light while you are still asleep can help kick start your day.
Light exposure effects our natural circadian rhythms of the body that alter our mood.

Exercise helps with ay type of negative mood swings and making us feel more alive. Endorphins (good mood chemicals) are produced and make us feel better. Sit near a window and look outside at the real daylight.
Bright light helps although light from our PC has not been shown to help.
Think about the spring and next summer warming your bones.Light box or Body clock light that stimulates day light or look into having light therapy. Daylight stimulation bulbs are claimed to help SAD.
Special fluorescent light bulbs to stimulate light are up to 25 times brighter. You need to be within 1 metre (3 feet) from the light for 30 minutes. To help kick start your day use the light when you wake up, using them at night can cause problems getting to sleep.
Exercise for 20 minutes 4-6 days week, even brisk walking or up flights of stairs. Certain exercise helps more than others. You may benefit more from walking others may find swimming more beneficial.
Avoid a lot of caffeine (more than 4 cups a day)