Regarding Fitness: I've given myself some terrific workouts. That statement is a different way to think about workouts. It's an evolution. I like it. I didn't work with a trainer, I chose the exercises myself and pushed myself further than the wimpy voice in my head wanted to go. I also took some great classes. I pushed myself. I monitored my progress, my energy, my heart rate, and silenced that bitch-ass voice in my head who wanted to quit, or do two sets instead of three, who didn't want to add weight or minutes or intensity. She's a wimp. And she hasn't been invited to my workouts!
Regarding Health: I've taken multiple bodily fluid / blood tests with the goal of having more energy, feeling "better", losing weight, and having optimum health 'numbers'. The results of the tests are that I am deficient in a lot of nutrients.
Let Me Tell Ya, the results of these tests are very, very micro-vitamin specific. Its a whole new language. These obscure elements and amino acids may be important for bodily function and overall health but are not part of my every day language. It's way out of my Alphabet of Vitamins - B, C, D, E, Calcium and Magnesium - comfort zone. I've gotten so lost in the information I've had to google long words like "a-Ketophenylacetic Acid" (I don't remember what it is but my 'marker' is 'good'). Adding to my confusion, Dr. Revitalize is a fast talker who breezes thru the lab reports with annoying glee.
One marker that is 'up' is Cortisol. That's bad. Cortisol is a stress hormone that can cause weight gain, depression, anxiety, diabetes, suppressed immunity, and hypertension to name a few.
Here's my dilemma: One of the ways Cortisol levels elevate is by exercising. So how do you lose weight and become more fit without increasing cortisol levels? Seems like a cruel joke!
In reading about treating thyroid issues thru diet (Paleo) I found information about exercising appropriately for thyroid health. Soooo...Think of your thyroid as your metabolism. Your metabolism is affected by cortisol. Therefore, my conclusion is to keep exercise intensity low(er) like you would when exercising for thyroid health, thus keeping cortisol levels low.
Do I really know if this works??? Or that it's a true statement? Nope. Not a clue. Not a scientist. But I will tell you this: I don't think the doctors know either. So what the heck! Give it a try!
Here's my suggestion: Exercise between 55% - 75% of your maximum heart rate. (220 minus your age multiplied by 55% and 75%) In my 53 year old case, my heart rate should stay between 92 and 125 beats per minute. Which is actually kind of a relief! That's a fairly easy, sustainable cardio workout. Everything can be monitored to stay within the 55% - 75%. (But occasionally increasing your intensity is fun and good for your heart!)
Here's the most important thing: Two terrific ways to reduce Cortisol levels are to Laugh & Dance!
Best therapy ever!
Get crackin' on reducing those cortisol levels My Friends!