Wednesday, May 20, 2009
While this series of Blogs deals with exercise, today's message applies to life as well. Breathe! Take a Deep Breath! This is extremely good advice since people who do not breathe tend not to be very healthy.
When we are stressed, our breathing becomes abnormal or hyper normal. We tend to take quick short breaths or to pant. Neither of these is effective in delivering the needed oxygen to our blood systems, our muscles, and our brains. Almost every exercise class I have ever attended starts and ends with the same movement. "Deep Knee Bend, Deep Breath". This is the intro and the exit. It lets your body know "We are starting to exercise" or "We're finished for today". It also sets the tone that breathing is important.
We have all heard someone counsel in a time of stress, "Stop and take a deep breath". When we get into a stressful situation, there is an adrenaline rush and the "fight or flight" mode kicks in. The body kicks into high gear and everything speeds up. Sometimes this is beneficial but most times it is not. AT these times we need to stop, take a deep breath or take several long slow regular breaths to get the systems to calm down and kick back into gear.
When we are exercising, the same is true. We need to keep a steady supply of oxygenated blood flowing through our veins. If you hold your breath during exercise and then gasp for air, you are creating a situation of feast or famine, oxygen-wise, and this is not the best situation. By breathing regularly, you keep the blood properly oxygenated and the muscles properly supplied with needed oxygen.
In life and in exercise, Breathe! Take a Deep Breath!