Month: May 2016
Movement and exercise are essential. There is no way around it. Especially as we get older, movement is a big part of staying healthy and fit. It pumps the whole body. Keeps off excess fat. Helps keep our insides purring. Aids digestion. Stimulates the brain. The list could go on and on. We find many ways to try to excuse ourselves out of exercise. I don’t really understand why. I guess I am one of those people blessed to enjoy exercise. I think maybe we often times misunderstand what it means to exercise based on what we are taught by movies, television, magazines, or our friends. Let me make two categories here.
EGO-BASED EXERCISE: This is often-times what we think of that deters us from exercising. For men it usually means whipping your body as hard as you can in the gym trying to lift super-heavy weights to “build muscle.” or get super-fit. For women, it often means dramatic or unsafe weight-loss techniques with seemingly never-ending cardio. For both genders, this is a dangerous and ineffective way to exercise. It is usually very unbalanced. It is not very fun or rewarding, and almost nobody has the nutritional or resting reserves to do this type of exercise for long.
HEALTH-BASED EXERCISE: This is when we take the ego out of the equation. Now this doesn’t mean we can’t have our self-image our self-esteem tied into it a LITTLE BIT, but it should not be our primary focus. The main focus is to move our body to FEEL BETTER, have MORE ENERGY, and become MORE BALANCED in our lives. A big variety in techniques and activities is good for this area.
Obviously, the health-based approach is the one that I recommend for people. TRAIN, DON”T STRAIN is the motto. If you are wearing yourself out every time in the gym or pushing past about 65-80% of your capacities; you are not going to be doing yourself any favors.
General guidelines for movement/exercise?
Movement and or/exercise most days of the week; with some break days. Mix it up thought. Do resistance training some days, cardio some days; or a combination. Stretch and
For me, it seems to work to do light resistance training about 3 times a week, the other 2 days cardio and stretching. I probably take 1-2 days off per week where I just walk.
To truly be healthy and balanced you will need to incorporate resistance, cardio, and some form of stretching/bodywork into your life on a regular basis!
I am coming to believe that a high proportion of people who do a good job taking care of their health, lives, and energy; often keep track of things or take logs of what they do. There is an old adage that says, “If it isn’t written down, it didn’t happen.” Now I don’t know if I can quite take that whole thing as is, but it certainly seems that we keep a lot better tabs on things when we record them. Think about it. We record all of our IMPORTANT or so-called IMPORTANT things; like receipts, bank statements, appointments, schedules, finances, stocks, etc. We record births, marriages, and relationship ties. Companies are especially on this often. It is very annoying to consumers, but smart companies have realize that it helps to keep track of what is going on. We keep track of sports statistics. We track the prescription drugs we take. We keep track of economics, salaries, and all kinds of other things. Very few people, on the other hand; keep track of LIFE statistics. We don’t usually keep track of the kinds of foods we eat, or how often we eat junk food. We don’t keep track of how often we exercise, or what types of exercise we are doing (or not doing). We don’t keep track of our relationships very well often times. Sometimes we end up hanging out with the same people over and over again; even thought we feel bad afterwards most of the time. Of course, I will admit that it is a little annoying recording your health and life, and I would not advise people to keep a highly-advanced journal; I do think that keeping some basic notes on your diet, your exercise, your sleep, relationships, spiritual life, etc, can be very helpful and keep us staying on track. All successful athletes , and most successful people are going to have some SYSTEM of keeping track of their basic life parameters. A few minutes in a notepad is not a big price to pay to track your health throughout life!
Often times in “modern” societies, we have developed sophisticated forms of modern medicine and we have been taught that these are the proper things to do if one gets sick. At the sign of illness, you go see your general doctor. If he can’t help you; the next step is a specialist. Then you are basically juggled around the system if you can’t find relief. On the menu is often prescription drugs, surgeries, and sometimes invasive testing procedures, and a boatload of stress! The GOOD doctors will alert you to “alternative” therapies such as diet, exercise, lifestyle modifications, and possibly alternative medicines. I guess I have a little bit of a problem with the system on this one. All of the therapies that are now being touted as “alternative” were the ONLY remedies for 99% of human existence. So my view is somewhat contrasting to the “modern medicine” view. Although, I will say that people are starting to wake up to normal therapies as the modern age continues along. Optimized Individuals approach is to “maximize” your normal human therapies using nutrition, exercise, sleep, stress-relief, mental/emotional work, targeted supplements and natural medicines, family/friends, spiritual lives, chiropractic, and body-work, etc to optimized your inputs. After that, I advise people to get a full workup with their doctors and maintain monitoring via a general practitioner. The problem we are running into these days is that no drug, surgery, or specialist can ever FIX you if you are not taking care of your personal and trans-personal responsibilities as a human being! So remember, old-school remedies are the ones that have been around the longest and generally seem to vibe best with people. I advise people to use what we call “alternative” as primary (most of the time) care, supplemented by professional medical advice.
We all theoretically live in the same system. The same universe. The same planet. So why does there seem to be so much conflicting wisdom and ideas out there? Unfortunately , sometimes as people; we conclude that the way that works best for US extrapolates to the WHOLE SYSTEM. The WHOLE planet and all the PEOPLE. This is true in the areas of healthy living. We have millions of ideas, “science,” traditions, legends, and thoughts regarding what it means to live well, but yet people are going to continue to fight. For instance, people with an asian background may not vibe the same with foods that caucasian people vibe with in general, because their ancestors grew with different foods. Religions or lifestyles as well as ideals have developed differently in different regions because the need arose. Some regions were better suited for farming, others for hunting, or foraging. Some people prefer warmer climates, and others cooler. I could go on and on about this type of stuff, but the main concept to get across is that WE are all different. Even members of the same family or community can be vastly different. THINK ABOUT HIGH SCHOOL! So our lives can be very different, yet we all are supposedly under ONE SYSTEM. The problems happen when we honor OUR way over THE way. THE WAY is the only one true laws of the universe and nobody knows exactly what that is. The best we can do is to try to align ourselves up closely to the true laws of the natural world and universe that we live in and help others to do the same. GOOD LUCK!