LETTERS From CAMP Rehoboth CAMP Fitness by Rick Moore Keeping Busy and Staying Active Ah, Spring! When a young man's fancy turns to...exercise! Yup, it's true. It's time to ramp-up the old rou
LETTERS From CAMP Rehoboth
|by Rick Moore|
|Keeping Busy and Staying Active
Ah, Spring! When a young man's fancy turns to...exercise! Yup, it's true. It's time to ramp-up the old routine. Get serious and get going. We've been light deprived too long. The landscape is bursting with color, and the temperature is starting to feel pretty good. I'm in a good mood.
But for some, all is not well. Some folks suffer from that dreaded depression. A client sent me a copy of "Get Healthier and Happier," an article by Deborah Kotz that ran in US News & World Report. It says that though you may be on anti-depressants, a good dose of vigorous exercise can be great medicine. I've always said that when you exercise, your brain releases endorphins and you get that "high" feeling. It's a great feeling of accomplishment and a vigorous boost of energy. But then again, I'm not a depressed person, but quite the contraryvery active, and with a positive outlook. A depressed person feels trapped, walls closing in, helpless, tired, stressed, and lost. Many are taking medication to help with the symptoms of the disease. Treatment with anti-depressant drugs is a way to try and adjust the brain's chemistry. Some work, some don't, and a combination of meds could helpbut not always.
Now getting back to the Deborah Kotz article, she claims that there is evidence that if you work out and burn at least 350 calories for each of every three sessions suggested each week, then your depression could be reduced. Note that she means vigorous exercise.
Along with an exercise regimen, studies show that good nutrition (including eating fish), a good night's sleep, and good old natural sun, go a long way in reducing depression. I do agree that exercise plays a major role in controlling this disease. If you've been diagnosed with depression, please try to keep busy and stay active.
Another mood altering activity is walking. Nothing beats it. Every able bodied person can do it. It's easy to do, not hard to learn, and the best one of all is...it's free! A good vigorous walk can boost your mood and elevate the metabolism. With the weather changing for the better now, being outdoors will surely shake off those winter doldrums. You can really lose a lot of weight by walking. The best results happen when you walk 20 minutes or more. Nick and I walk through the new development down the road. It takes 30 minutes of non-stop walking to do the whole community. It's been quite enjoyable.
If you don't really care to walk all that often but you still need the exercise, then try gardening. What a wonderful way to get some vigorous exercise. Many of my clients have gardensflowers and/or vegetableand they don't realize it when they over-do it sometimes. You can really get a workout. Feeling depressed? Do some gardening. You won't realize that all that lifting, bending, hauling, shoveling, and planting is helping your body, too.
Recently Nick and I contracted to have a garage build for our cars. It turned out quite well, if I say so myself. After the workers had finished and left, we had to do some major landscaping. Let me tell you, this was really hard work. Putting in plants and trees was physically demanding, but truly worth it. We are now in the process of putting in a vegetable and herb garden. I've never done anything like this before and I'm really looking forward to it. We know it will be quite demanding but we are willing to give it a try.
Rick Moore is a personal trainer certified by the American Fitness Professionals & Associates. Visit him at www.ricksfitness.net.
LETTERS From CAMP Rehoboth, Vol. 18, No. 03 April 04, 2008