Archives for Mental Illness
A few days ago, while I was riding a stationary bike at the gym, an older gentleman we'll call Greg walked up to me and said, "You know you can lose a lot more calories on the elliptical or treadmill, right?" Lose a lot more calories? I thought. I’m not trying to lose calories. I’m trying to gain leg strength and endurance... I just smiled and thanked him, and told him I was winding down after a pretty intense weightlifting session (which was true, too). After the exchange, I started thinking. So many people assume we’re at the gym to lose weight (especially us girls -- sorry y'all, but you know it’s true). Sure, I wanted to drop a few pounds when I joined, but I've since learned there's so much more to gain at the gym -- and I'm not just talking about muscles and strength. However, I realized Greg had an unintentional point: There are things to lose at the gym -- they just go way beyond weight.
As a fitness writer and coach who has been training consistently for over a decade, I can confidently say that I don’t like exercising, and that’s okay. -- Dick Talens Bet you that's not a statement you'd ever expect to hear from a fitness writer and coach, but that's exactly the message Dick Talens sends in his latest Lifehacker piece, "You Might Never Love Exercise (But Do It Anyway)." Well, that and the "do it anyway" part, of course.
I had the MOST fun yesterday! My favorite yoga studio started its summer pass package (all the yoga you can stand for one discounted price), so of course I had to sign up. However, I didn’t venture into the studio alone yesterday. When I saw there was a beginner yoga class scheduled for yesterday evening, I had to talk a friend of mine – who’s never tried yoga, not even using a video or yoga app – into going with me. I figured because it was a beginner class, she’d be less intimidated. Boy, was I WRONG.
Earlier this week, I decided to up my resistance levels on the elliptical machine, as well as choose a new workout (I went with a random hill variance). So, basically I was “climbing” up and down random hills at various different levels of resistance. (For those of you unfamiliar with elliptical machines, the harder the resistance and workout setting, the slower you might go – until your legs get stronger, that is.) So, although I was working my ass off (pun slightly intended – hey, it’s Friday), any random passerby might have thought I was just lollygagging around, lazily going through the motions until my 30 minutes were up. In reality, I was kind of struggling to hold it together.
During my journey to get physically and mentally fit, I’ve run across several myths that held me up, and I’ve noticed I’m not the only one. More often than not, these “myths” are just ways to talk yourself out of getting moving. Generally, getting fit isn’t easy peasy (no matter what all these workout and diet gurus tell you); it takes hard work. Still, it’s doable, and it benefits you both physically and mentally. Let’s take a look at some of the most common myths about fitness, and the (sometimes brutal!) facts that can crush them in their steps!
A few weeks ago, I published a post on my thoughts about before-and-after pictures of our bodies. Since then, I've been thinking about how that idea relates – perhaps more positively – to before-and-after pictures of our minds. I've always dabbled in exercise and healthy eating, but it wasn't until a few years ago that I got serious about it; not just for my body, but also for my mind. My "before picture" was horrendous, to say the least. I was extremely out of shape, both physically and mentally. I couldn't stand to look at it, much less let others see it. Now that I'm more serious about how I treat my body, I have a healthier, more glowing "after picture." I feel a sense of pride when I step back and look at all the positive changes I've made in my life (again, both physically and mentally), and I don't mind showing others and helping them work toward beautiful after pictures, too (hence, the birth of "Your Body, Your Mind"!). So, if you could take before-and-after pictures of your mind, how would they look? I'll go first!
The National Eating Disorders Awareness (NEDA) Week kicked off on Sunday, February 22, 2015. This year's NEDA theme, "I Had No Idea...": [...] aims to promote public and media attention to the seriousness of eating disorders and improve education about the biological underpinnings, environmental triggers, warning signs and how to help those struggling. In honor of that, I thought I'd join the movement and share with you some facts about eating disorders you might not have known, and I encourage you to click on the source links to learn even more about eating disorders.
So, I’ve lost 10 pounds in the last two weeks. Don’t congratulate me; I wasn’t trying. You see, I’ve been a freelance writer and editor for the past decade and, as such, I juggle several clients and a variety of projects during any given day. Having been at it as long as I have, I’ve learned how to effectively manage my time. I know how to handle responsibility—whether it’s responsibility to my work or my overall well-being (i.e. any activities that enrich my mental, emotional, and physical life unrelated to my work). However, I’ve taken on a new project and although I LOVE IT, I’ve let it consume most of my waking hours. I’ve become so obsessed with doing this project and doing it well that I’ve... ...forgotten to eat.
You might not believe it (or, maybe you might) but one of the most common answers I get when I ask people why they exercise is... ..."I want to look better naked!" Setting aside the fact that what "looks better naked" is subjective, as someone who firmly believes that diet and exercise can help improve so much more than just our physical appearance (such as our mental and physical lives), I always want to educate them on the other benefits of regularly working out. So, while looking better naked is great, below are an additional five benefits of exercising.
Robin Williams committed suicide earlier this week. Say that again, out loud. Robin Williams -- one of the world's funniest and, despite suffering from depression, seemingly happiest men on earth -- committed suicide.