Discussion in 'Self Care and Healthy Lifestyles' started by protonaut, Oct 9, 2007.

  1. protonaut

    protonaut Well-Known Member

    I hear a lot of people dealing with one or more of the following problems.

    - Depression
    - Difficulty sleeping
    - Feeling unmotivated
    - Unable to lose weight
    - Health problems from smoking

    I've dealt with three of the above problems for 6 years now, and have tried many different medications, doctors, therapists, you name it..

    I'm not going to pretend that I've found any miracle cures for the above problems. I haven't, and anyone that tells you differently is probably trying to scam you for money.

    I've found the greatest improvements for the above problems was simply exercise. Consistent, thorough exercise. I've had friends who dealt with any or all of the above problems at some point, and I've seen first-hand the dramatic changes in their lives from running. Believe me, it can take several hard weeks of effort before you start noticing changes, but I can guarantee you will be overwhelmed at how good it feels when you're in shape.

    The reason why it's so difficult for people who are unmotivated to get into this routine is because they often have no friends willing to train with them. It's essential to have at least one other person running with you, and a group is even better. The role of the friend is to be there to get you going on days when you don't feel like it, and vice-versa.

    I know how amazing it feels to be in the best shape of your life, I once felt that kind of power when I was training for my first marathon at age 14. (That was also the only marathon I ran in, and I may never do it again!) I have a lot of training experience due to my efforts in track and cross country from age 11-16. I learned a lot from the coaches, and can train people at levels that are comfortable for them.

    It's a lot of hard work, so don't even think about it unless you're willing to accept pain. You will sleep better, feel better mood wise, feel more motivated every day, be stronger and healthier, lose weight, and counter a lot of the harmful effects of smoking and drinking. It builds tremendous confidence as well.

    I don't waste time in my life. I live to help myself and to help others - that's why I came to these boards on my free time, I'm here to make a difference. Nothing makes me feel better than genuinely helping someone who needs it.

    Here's my proposition. I will personally volunteer my time to those who need it (as our schedules permit) and be a free personal trainer who will work with you, setup a routine, and train with you at agreed upon locations in the area. You can bring a friend or two with you, as long as you all agree to train. This is for people living in or around Montgomery County, MD. You can end the training program at any time - but if you can survive the first 3 weeks and realize how good you're feeling, I doubt you will want to quit!

    Age and skill level are unimportant, but I recommend getting a checkup with your doctor before starting, just to make sure you're healthy enough for training. If you're interested, shoot me a PM and we'll discuss the idea further.

    Since 99% of you don't even live near me, the only thing I can do for most of you is recommend websites, books, or answer your questions about training. If you need help, send me a PM and I'll try to give you the information you need.
  2. protonaut

    protonaut Well-Known Member

    Also, if you are in Montgomery County, here's a club you can join to participate in training programs, races, etc. in the area.

    If you're interested in running but are not in good enough shape, I can help you prepare. Some people should start out by walking every morning, and can then move on to biking, swimming, weight lifting and plenty of other exercises before heading to the track or running trail. There's no rush, you decide when you're ready. Sports like basketball, baseball, football, etc. are also good.

    I know all about the proper diets whether you prefer light or hard training. Water is of course the most important, you should get in the habit of drinking 8 (big) glasses a day, even if you're not that active.

    Any other athletes here to back me up? Exercise (with proper diet) is the best solution to improve psychological and physical health for nearly everyone. Humans are wired for physical activity, the most common health problems are direct results of inactivity, since it's unnecessary for survival in a modern society. Balance is needed. I wish I could personally be there to help everyone on this forum, I really do. Man, there's only so much I can do though.
  3. savetoniqht

    savetoniqht Well-Known Member

    i looooveeeelovelovelove running. i feel sooo much better after i run, it's actually amazing. That's what i do when i'm stressed, too.
  4. neutral

    neutral Well-Known Member

    Your advise sounds cool. I'm going to make a good attempt at an exercise routine over the next couple of weeks. (And continue if it turns out good.)

    I am not able to run everyday as it makes my joints hurt if there is no rest periods. What kind of exercise routine would you recommend to start out with?

    Thank you for your post!
  5. protonaut

    protonaut Well-Known Member

    A training program will be different depending on one's goals. What I'm mentioning here will be some common sense preparations for any beginning runners who'd like to test the waters. Personally I feel that energy level is the most important thing to consider, running on low nutrients or without enough water can be an invitation for sickness, so be careful out there. In cold weather, a hat to keep your head covered will preserve a lot of needed body heat. If you're wanting to lose weight, eating more food than usual will actually help. You'll store greater energy after big meals and be able to run longer distances before tiring. Stock up on plenty of nutritious foods, fill the fridge and cabinets. Go for complex carbs. Fruits, vegetables, grains, juice, and anything else you normally eat, with the exception of excessively sugary or salty foods. Run on an empty stomach if possible (wait a few hours after meal before running) to reduce the chances of stomach cramps or nausea, and to allow proper digestion. Drinking water or a sports drink right before running is okay.

    As funny as this sounds, here's a simple way to check if you're drinking enough fluids. When you pee first thing in the morning, if your urine is clear, you have enough water in your system. If it's yellow, try drinking more water.

    If your joints hurt, well, there could be a number of reasons depending on your age and health conditions. A few things to check, make sure your running shoes aren't too tight, they should be soft and comfortable (they don't have to be brand new shoes either, I use old worn-out ones all the time). Also work on your posture and running technique, which you'll probably develop naturally with practice. It's easier to show visually than in words, this video basically covers the most important points though. Stretches before (and after) running are also important to decrease likelihood of muscle strains and other injuries. Here are a few warm up stretches.

    Also, take a look at this video which is funny looking, but actually these dynamic stretches work really well. Alternatively, if you have a footbag, try kicking that around for a few minutes before you run. That's what I like to do, personally. ;P

    Yoga stretches and breathing exercises are also really helpful, if you're into that. I've done yoga before, but I'm not a regular student or anything. If you have recurring joint pains after running, check with your doctor.

    Of course it's normal to experience sore muscles and fatigue the day after. I would advise being active every other day to start off, with plenty of rest and meals on the days in between. So you might begin with about 3 runs per week, then move up to 4 or 5 after a few weeks if you feel up to it.

    A 30 min. workout each day is a good amount. Jog at a steady pace, continue this until your lungs begin to feel the burn from breathing hard. Begin walking until you catch your breath, but start running again as soon as possible. If you feel any major pains in your chest, legs (or somewhere other than your lungs) then it would be best to end the exercise early and try again the next day. See a doctor about any serious pain which continually bothers you. Push yourself just a little more each day if you can, or every other day. If you can keep this up for 3 weeks straight, you'll notice improvements in your energy level. When you can run 30 min. without stopping to walk, move it up to 40 min. the next week, or try increasing your speed during the 30 min. workout.

    I'm actually out of shape myself, but I'll be running again too once the new year starts. The week before this I'll be hitting a boxing bag for 15 min - 30 min. each day to get warmed up. Then the pain begins! :wub:
  6. Lead Savior

    Lead Savior Well-Known Member

    I cycle, exercise really does do all the things this man speaks of
  7. cloud9

    cloud9 Well-Known Member

    Man I'd love to run outside, but its too cold in the winter in Canada. I mean I guess I could brave the cold......but I just stick to the treadmill...
  8. Magic

    Magic Member

    Treadmill has its advantages, since you can see your speed, distance and so on :smile:. Outside feels better, but probably not for people who live in big cities :smile:.

    Wow, you make it sound kind of scary :smile:. I myself went from simply walking to running at 7-8 MPh for 40-60 minutes (is it any achievement? I want a pro's opinion :biggrin:), and I don't think that it was much pain or hard work. This is the advantage of running, there aren't really any requirements, you can start doing it no matter what your physical condition is.

    I didn't become less depressed or stop thinking about suicide unfortunately :dry:.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 7, 2008