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Devon’s Prescription for a Healthy and Happy Lifestyle

Devon’s Naturally Healthy month is back, and this year the campaign will be running throughout October. Naturally Healthy October is all about getting outside and enjoying Devon’s amazing natural environment and feeling happier and healthier for it. Activities could include walking, cycling, gardening, wild swimming or bird watching. There is something for everyone! More than ever we are recognising the importance of being active outdoors and connecting to nature. Due to Coronavirus the campaign this year will run a little differently. Naturally Healthy events and activities need to be COVID safe, and we will also be encouraging people to get out individually and follow the latest government guidance on COVID -19. “The global pandemic has had a huge impact on all of our lives with many people suffering enormously,” said Dr James Szymankiewicz, North Devon GP and member of the Devon Local Nature Partnership. “As well as those directly affected by COVID -19 there are also large numbers of people whose mental health has been affected as they try to cope with not only the health, but the social and financial impacts as well.” “We have seen during this time how much we all value getting outside, for many of us the hour a day of exercise during lockdown was the highlight of our day. “Never has it been more important to look after ourselves and our communities.”  The initiative is led by the Devon Local Nature Partnership through Active Devon* and Devon County Council. It brings together a wide range of partners from health, wellbeing, community and environment sectors. “Naturally Healthy October encourages us to connect with nature in lots of different ways. That could be in your back garden, local park, the beach or moors, valleys and waterways.” said Tom Mack from Active Devon. “We are really lucky in Devon to have so much green and blue space to explore. So whether it’s going for a walk or jog in the woods or at the beach, stretching in the garden, having a picnic in the park, or taking pictures on your daily dog walk, just take a moment whilst you move more to soak up everything that nature has to offer.” During October Active Devon and Devon County Council, on behalf of the Devon Local Nature Partnership, will be sharing lots more information about being Naturally Healthy. A…

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Five Ways to Improve Your Car’s Performance

Speak to any petrolhead about car performance modifications and most will jump straight to engine tweaking. However, there are a myriad of other tweaks you can make to your car to improve its performance and help it run smoother. After all, there’s more to car tuning than just engine maintenance. A whole industry has sprung up from modifying cars and there are thousands of enhancements you can make to your vehicle — from changing the wheels and tyres to complete body kit overhauls. Making changes to your car can completely transform both its performance and its looks; plus, it can be tremendously satisfying, too. Read on for five top tips to enhance your vehicle. Remove any extra, unneeded weight While it might sound obvious, removing any extra weight from your car will have a dramatic effect on its overall acceleration, top speed and handling. Remove any junk you might have lying around your vehicle and also give it a thorough clean. However, if you really want to strip weight from your car, think about other items like the spare wheel and jack. You could also consider taking out the back seats (so long as any family members don’t disagree). In a typical car, the back seats weigh around 25kg so you’ll immediately improve the power to weight ratio. Also, if your car has electrically adjustable seats, think about replacing them with racing seats. Typical electric seats can weigh as much as 35kg, compared to just 12kg for racing seats.  Other top tips for reducing weight include fitting lighter body panels, adding lighter wheels, carrying less fuel, swapping out heavy engine components and replacing glass windows with polycarbonate. Consider changing your tyres tyres are your interface with the road and choosing the right type can dramatically improve your car’s performance. In simple terms, the softer the compound of the tyre, the faster it will heat and begin to grip the road. Soft tyres have massively improved grip over harder models, though they do suffer more from durability issues. If you’re in any doubt about the efficacy of tyres on a car’s handling, just watch any Formula One race and see how far drivers fall back when they choose the wrong set. Tyres have a massive effect on the balance and handling of a car, allowing you to drive quicker and safer. …

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