This is a discussion on Ask: The Forum's Fitness Freaks! within the Health and Fitness forums, part of the Topics of Interest category; Originally Posted by CloudySkies Is it true that exercising helps keep mentally balanced as well as physically? I've read in ...
You don't even need to exercise an hr a day, check my avatar pic, to get that all I did was 20mins every other day, its not how long you exercise for, its how efficiently, effectively you workout for!
For instance, 1 hour of walking won't get you far but 20min of high intensity cardio like sprinting/stopping will do wonders.
Diet is 70%, exercise is 30%.
Gym isn't even required, I bought 2 dumbbells and a pull up bar for $200 and thats ALL thats required...
It really me a lot at least. Otherwise I can't really do it.
To be honest though I've always sort of hated sports and exercise.
Being more active though has definitely helped me feel better but I've been wondering if more strenuous activity would help more.
But the thing is I'm already pretty fit, and I don't have a vehicle and basically walk, everywhere
so..I'm trying to figure out if it's needed or would make a difference.
Weightlifting is great because it forces you to really dig down and work on movement patterns from their most fundamental stepping stones. Squat, push, pull and jumping. All of these things relate to your ability to move properly and safely. NTM the gym is a controlled environment; you have the ability to control all the variables, how fast you do something, how much you do, how much weight you lift. Once you start seeing those small gains, or hit a goal you didnt expect its one of the greatest feelings in the world. We refer to it as PR high. You hit that goal youve been working towards on a weight and finally everything shitty from your day sort of melts away. Yes it does help get some aggression out, but staying in a positive mind set does wonders when you dont hit that PR you were hoping for.
I would recommend just working on squatting in all kinds of variations, pushups, dips (squats for your arms), deadlifting and benchpress. As you get a little more advanced you can start adding more overhead and dynamic work; but at first you are simply working towards learning proper stability and all the standard lifts (bench, dead and squat) have very specific setups that help learn how to create that power and stability:
This is a great article that talks about squat setups and proper breathing (yes... breathing)
There was one floating around about setting up for a bench but Im not sure where it snuck off to; it involves jamming a ton of tension into your upper back but starting with your head off the end of the bench and skooching, underneath the bar while keeping your feet on the bench. Puts a ton of tension into your back and gets you really tight. Helps make for a really even drive.
i have a specific question relating to possible injury risk. i'll do the long anecdotal, and then i have a couple of specific questions i'd love to get informed feedback on.
a few days ago, i did my workout in the stronglifts 5x5 format: bench press, back squats and deadlift. i've known all along that my left shoulder is weak - at least i've always thought of it as the shoulder. tbh i probably pushed things a bit too far in the bench press.
after the workout and for the day following, i had a sharp/burning pain in the connective tissues directly under and all along the base of my left collarbone. i did a lot of poking and palpating by pressing with the ball of my own thumb, and could definitely feel them. a set of short, wide, rubbery tissues about the dimensions of my thumbnail, definitely very tender. the same thing to a lesser degree if i followed off the edge of the collarbone into the hollow of the shoulder (i found a great one deep in there, which wasn't as sore as the others, but if i leaned on it hard i could get this great twinge going on all the way down into my armpit).
the whole thing had something a rheumatologist once told me is the hallmark of tendonitis - feels okay under strain, but the pain starts when the load is relaxed. i found that shrugging my collarbone in towards my neck was the worst way of setting it off - and again, it didn't actually hurt until i relaxed the shrug and let the bones go back to where they came from.
anyway . . . i thought i'd really messed something up, but i rested, did a lot of triggerpoint pressure, kept doing rom movements, and ate a lot of glucosamine/calcium/omega-3 for a day or two. and i made some guesses about the muscles involved and did some hard work on them too on the theory if the tendons were under strain then loosening out the associated muscles could only help that.
to my surprise, i felt fine enough to go back after a day of rest and do the next workout as planned, with a lot more warmup progressing through weight to about 50% of my actual working weight . . . i avoided the bench press, but i did do overhead presses, squats and deadlift, more or less at the +5 weight levels called for in the programme.
and i feel fine today. actually, that whole shoulder quadrant feels better than it has in some time.
so my questions:
1. am i wrong in thinking the pain was about tendons, and the tendons were the ones that lead from the pecs? i.e. not 'rotator cuff' as everyone seems to recite automatically if you point to that zone.
2. i've got the working theory right now that the progressive/semi-heavy warmup sets were the key yesterday.
3. any suggestions about stabilization or strengthening? i'm right handed and very aware that i'm much weaker on the left than the right.
thanks to anyone with any thoughts.
Last edited by lilysocks; 07-01-2014 at 12:08 AM.
How much does a healthy diet and exercise increase mental acuity? I know it's specific to the individual, but would someone likely see a fairly significant advantage to actively good health for mental abilities?