As I mentioned in my first blog, I will use this as an opportunity to respond to questions I receive through the website or facebook or to responses you send back to our survey questions. Last week we asked what is your hardest thing about exercise. Most of the responses involved the physical aches and pains normally associated with doing exercise or the exhaustion involved. Did you know that muscle soreness occurs as a result of microscopically breaking down muscle tissue through exertion. As the muscle goes to “repair and rebuild” mode, the body sends a hormonal signal to the brain to let you know to be careful with this area as it has been microscopically damaged. Yes, soreness is literally a hormonal signal received by the brain. This is part of the reason that we recommend that you rest in between days of exercise that is either new, increased in intensity or time or, involving strength training.
In terms of exercise causing exhaustion. This may be a sign that the exercise session was either too long or the intensity was too much. Exercise may leave you feeling a little tired, but for many they finish feeling exhilarated. This is the ideal scene. If you find you are repeatedly feeling exhausted after exercise, rethink your approach! Shorten your time. Decrease your intensity. See if this helps. The most important thing is to listen to your body. Try not to push until exhaustion.
Finally, some of you mentioned that you find it hard to exercise because of boredom. Given that exercise ideally should be done several days each week, the last thing you should settle for is an experience that leaves you feeling bored. You owe it to yourself to find an exercise experience that you will enjoy and even look forward to. Look, if that clothes-hanging treadmill is the most convenient mode for you to begin exercise, but you just cannot stomach the thought of walking staring at the basement wall, then don’t! It may be a little less convenient to drive to a location to exercise, but if you find an activity or event you really enjoy, you may just find that you will actually look forward to the inconvenience and will benefit tremendously from the results. I would love to hear from you what has worked or not worked to address this common concern!