Insights and discussions on ways to improve your physical /mental health
July 14, 2015
Anatomy / Physiology • Balancing Work and Play • Creating Positive Habits • Fitness • Kinesiology • Medical Benefits • Psychology • Science of Massages • Stress Relief • Stretching
Hello fellow blog reader!
I want to start this discussion on a personal level by sharing you my physical/mental health goals. To do so I want to be honest about the struggles I am currently facing:
PHYSICALLY: Though I do enjoy physical activities, I admit I’m not an avid gym attendee or consider myself athletic by any means. Yes, massage therapy does burn a good amount of calories for me, but I know I can build up the stamina to improve on more physical activities throughout the day. This is what I’m doing as of now:
Before breakfast, I put on a short exercise/stretching video from youtube (anywhere between 5-10 minutes to start). I found that to be the easiest way for me to start towards my goals. I grew up doing the traditional ‘radio taiso’ Japanese workouts, so I found a youtube clip of it and do those daily. I feel it not only warms up my muscles, it gets my mind going. I then reward myself with breakfast.
Now I don’t know about you, but with every meal following a workout of some sort, I tend to eat healthier. Perhaps it’s a combo of my brain telling my appetite that its not worth the calorie binge after a hard earned workout or my stomach feeling sensitive (I tend to get a little queasy if I push myself). Either way, I usually crave low protein, less, oily, fruits/veg meals.
More about the diet: What’s my secret? I’m not going to tell you some fad diet that tells you that you must eliminate something to lose fat. I’m going to tell you a BASIC SCIENTIFIC PRINCIPLE (thermodynamics) that works for everyone: burn more calories than you consume. That’s it.
A common response people say to me:”But what about carbs? You should watch out for carbs and avoid them, etc…” The reason why carb dense foods can pack on pounds is because of their calories. When you eat a slice of bread, a cup of rice, or especially a bagel, look at the calories per serving.
Want a helpful link for more info? I’ll once again turn to the trusted sciencebasedmedicine.org website describing thermodynamics and calories for your weight:
For transition purposes, I want to finalize my points on my physical health of diet/exercise by saying how much better I feel mentally after a work out and making health-conscious choices to my diet. I’m not saying you shouldn’t ever indulge in your favorite calorie rich foods, it’s just realizing that you need to have balance: maintaining a nutritious diet with the occasional treats
I’m naturally a bit of an anxious person. I think my strong hold on having a perfectionist’s mind plays a huge part to my anxiety. I notice flaws that I dwell on. I take on more than I can handle. I over-worry about what people think of me and my image.
This tendency to anxiety and stress is what turned me to massage therapy. As mentioned on the ‘ABOUT’ page under my bio, I was exposed to massage therapy growing up, just in a more causal way. My parents and friends loved that I offered neck and back massages when they felt sore or stressed. I, of course, also felt amazing after receiving a massage. To me, my job plays a big role in defining who I am. I’ve become a lot more at peace with myself because of this incredibly rewarding field that I’m in. I also take care of myself by getting regular massages (I average about twice a month).
Something else that helps me mentally while enhancing my personality are my hobbies. I love table top board games, playing instruments/singing, painting, hiking, and writing just to name a few. Everyone has some sort of interest, the goal is to continue them or find new hobbies and interests and surround yourself with people who also share them.
I conclude once again with the theme of balance: when I share and give to others, it really elevates the feel-good, positive mood that makes life so enjoyable. And of course, in return, I make sure to receive. ‘Pamper,’ ‘indugle,’ ‘reward,’ ‘treat yourself,’ whatever you want to call it, know that when you’ve spent hours helping other people, you more than deserve to help yourself.