Week 5: Fitness Fun

Feb 05, 2024 16:42:42PM

There are loads of scientific studies that suggest strength training is an effective way to get in the best shape of your life. I’m a huge fan and recommend weight training routines for both men and women. Like all things in life moderation is key, and to avoid burnout, I don’t suggest weight training as your only type of physical activity.

A good example of a workout split, would be 3-4 days of heavy strength training with some low-impact strength and mobility training such as yoga or pilates. Both yoga and pilates also incorporate body weight resistance which is great for building functional strength. We should each prioritize daily walks and make time throughout the week for activities that we love and feel like play.

Week 5 is all about getting back to that little kid inside and incorporating play into your life. Sometimes you need to break up the sets and reps at the gym and do something active outside with friends.

I grew up playing sports and played football in college. As I have gotten older, I have grown to love a good pickup basketball game and enjoy weekend beach volleyball tournaments. These are all forms of exercise that feel like play and get me out in the sun for some vitamin D. I live in LA, and I’d be crazy not to take advantage of the weather here! Playing sports as an adult is also a great way to socialize with friends and meet new people. If sports aren’t your thing, then getting out in nature and going on a hike has so many mental and physical benefits as well.

My big play day is on Saturday when a group of us play beach volleyball. I get to run around in the sun, burn calories and have a good laugh with friends. Beach volleyball can be a type of anaerobic exercise. It involves quick bursts of energy with some plyometric jumps. During exercise, cortisol works with other fat burning hormones, dopamine, adrenaline and the growth hormone to increase fat release. This is when producing more cortisol is most beneficial. The key is to transition back into a low cortisol state when you’re not exercising. Quick short-term stress will actually help us burn fat. Chronically elevated stress is what increases fat storage. I’ve noticed that when I’m doing something fun, I’m able to calm down and drop my stress levels quickly during rest periods. My stress levels even stay low the remainder of the day after we finish playing. I do not rush to go eat while I am in a high cortisol state after activity. It’s in this moment when cortisol and insulin are paired, that insulin magnifies cortisol’s fat storing properties while simultaneously blocking its fat burning activity. Try to be aware of when you’re in a high stress state and about to eat a meal. This is what we don’t want.

In conclusion, go enjoy a new activity or sport at least a day or two out of the week! Let your body feel all those hormones socializing during exercise and let your good mood and gratitude bring you right back into parasympathetic state when you’re finished. When you’re doing activities you really enjoy it will just happen naturally, so go have fun and just be!


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