Burning your candle at both ends

Burning your candle at both ends

Burning your candle at both ends OptiMum Health

This year seems to be whizzing by at an
alarming rate and here we are at the second
May Bank Holiday already.

Interestingly I’ve had the same conversation
with 3 different groups of clients this
week….about their candles meeting in the

Everyone looked slightly perplexed when I
first said this until I expanded it to the
more traditional saying of “burning your
candle at both ends”.

This is more familiar.

Traditionally it refers to going to bed late
and getting up early in a bid to ‘get
everything done’. It can also be allied to
the ‘work hard, play hard’ saying too.

Whichever way you dress it up, the outcome is
the same – the candle will meet in the middle
and burn out much faster (twice as quickly in
fact) as if you just burn the candle at one

Our lives seem ever busier, dashing from work
to the gym, to the shops, to children’s
engagements, social functions and a myriad
other activities that demand our time and

Our relaxation time has changed too –
invariably this involves a screen of some
description. Whether that’s a TV, a phone, a
tablet or a computer.

It’s worth bearing in mind the effect this
has on our mind!

The blue light from the screen affects our
hormone production – particularly that of
melatonin, our ‘sleep hormone’.

Sleep is a key time for our bodies to
regenerate and is an essential ingredient of
any weight loss journey.

What’s more, the images we see are frequently
disturbing – whether it be details of the
latest terrorist activities or natural
disasters in the news or tales of child or
animal cruelty in social media feeds.

How does this constant influx of negative
imagery affect your mood?

You may be pushing yourself towards a health
and fitness goal or perhaps striving to lose
weight. Have you phased your approach or are
you rigidly sticking to a relentlessly high
pressure training regime or restrictive diet?

This also amounts to burning the candle at
both ends.

Your body needs recovery time.

Make sure you keep your candle burning as
long as possible by incorporating time for
relaxation, regeneration and nourishment into
your regime.

It is possible to burn the candle at both
ends for a time. You can feel amazing while
you’re doing it – superhuman almost!

No time for rest

What happens when that candle meets in the middle?

Trust me, though, the point at which it meets
in the middle is not fun.

Fatigue, illness, perpetual tiredness, low
mood, depression and sleeplessness (yes even
though you are dog tired) can be common
symptoms of ‘burn out’.

Recovering from this state can take a long

Listen to your body.

Factor rest into your weeks.

Keep that candle burning, one end at a time.

Focus on your health first, fitness and
weight goals will follow.

Take care of yourself.


P.S. Learn more about how to unplug here