Exorcising Your Exercise Demons

Exercise is a big part of my life, I notice every missed work-out. It keeps me grounded and exorcises any excess stress I have. Whenever I hear that someone is depressed, I wonder why they are not out running or biking. There is something therapeutic when your heart is pounding in your ears at 170 beats a minute. You simply cannot be depressed if you are giving your heart – body and soul – to your action.

I like variety so I run, bike, lift weights, do cross-fit, krav maga, spin, and swim. I also work the elliptical trainer as a warm-up before most every gym exercise I do. I’ve also (confession alert) found Pilates quite challenging and rewarding. It has become fashionable to talk of the core (not your beloved Corps, you leathernecks out there) and its benefits to the body. But it cannot be denied, a strong core is critical.

That said, I try not to work out two days in a row. I go every other day, like clockwork. And it may be that this is an effective way to go about business:

The Exercise Equivalent of a Cheeseburger?

New Research Says Endurance Running May Damage Health

Over the last few months, during the endurance-athletics off-season, something extraordinary happened: The line began to blur between the health effects of running marathons and eating cheeseburgers.

“I’m not worried,” says veteran running coach Mark Sullivan, who has run more than 150 marathons, joking that “there are guys who live to be 100 smoking cigarettes and eating cheeseburgers.”

Endurance athletes have long enjoyed a made-of-iron image. But amid mounting evidence that extraordinary doses of exercise may diminish the benefits of modest amounts, that image is being smudged. That extra six years of longevity running has been shown to confer? That benefit may disappear beyond 30 miles of running a week, suggest recent research.

The improved blood pressure, cholesterol levels and robust cardiac health that exercise has been proven to bestow? Among extreme exercisers, those blessings may be offset partially by an increased vulnerability to atrial fibrillation and coronary-artery plaque, suggest other recent studies.

In a funny exercise related story, one of the Pilates teachers told us how she used to teach aerobics and had to remind her students not to scratch their noses when she scratched hers. Now that is a good buncha students. Monkey see, monkey do. . .