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Can exercise actually feel good?

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Jun. 26th, 2001 | 01:32 am

Interesting, I pushed myself hard enough on my bike that I actually felt good afterwords. With small amounts of exercise it just feels like work. With larger amounts, there's this point where ones body actually feels better in some way. Perhaps like it's working better or one is in better touch with it, or perhaps it's just the endorphins that I'd heard about.

Perhaps my long history of depression might be offset by actually getting a sufficient amount of physical activity?

Another interesting idea is instead of abusing myself over my weight I should find some reasonable metrics of physical fitness & health and as long as they show that I'm in good health I should accept my body the way it is as opposed to trying to conform to the current standards of beauty.

The current fad for thinness is justified on the idea that overweight people are less healthy. Although being overweight is correlated with being sedentary, it is quite possible to have someone who is 'overweight' who is far more healthy than someone who is sedentary, but thin.

I'm trying to convince myself of this because I have this strong suspicion that I can never be as 'thin' as society would want me to be. I've got this peasant genetic background that's all about trying to store energy for later and build muscle for all that hard physical labor that my genes think I'm supposed to be doing.

I'm not willing to live on iceberg lettuce, coffee, and diet pills to try and conform. One friend of mine mentioned about one of her tall 'thin' coworkers was trying to survive on that diet. Which she frighteningly thought was eating well.

At my therapy appointment we talked a bit about this, and she mentioned that as women have gotten more freedom to pursue a wider variety of independent iives, the standards of beauty have been getting narrower. Apparently, as the theory goes, the current standards of beauty are orientated toward making the white guys in power less nervous about having to share their power.

The current standards of beauty seem to me to be best described as frail teenage girls instead of robust adult women. (Where robust means strong, healthy, and active.)

The last thing about exercise that bugs me is the irony that we invent these labor saving devices to prevent us from needing to expend energy. Then once we've discovered that we need some activity to keep our bodies functioning, we invent new machines to do this now special exercise task.

The part I find most annoying is the labor saving devices are more expensive than doing it the physical way and the exercise technology is expensive. You could save money needed to buy two types of technology by just doing stuff by hand.

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Comments {4}

Stephanie Wukovitz

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from: sebab
date: Jun. 26th, 2001 10:37 am (UTC)
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a few thoughts.... I've read about studies which indicate that women who exercise feel much better about their bodies than those who don't -- I think I recall that this doesn't correlate with weight, but was thought instead to have something to do with the women's feelings of doing something positive and healthy... they felt more in control of themselves.

I hate the actual feeling of exercise, all the way through (I've only once gotten the feeling you describe, even during extremely long workouts) but the effects in terms of stamina, appearance, and an improved body image keep me at it. I'm never exactly going to be willowy (descended from Hungarian peasants, [plus way too short) but years of working out HAVE made a difference.

please keep at it! and congratulations for trying this!

incidentally, I know a lot of people who think strong, robust, fit (of varying sizes) women are sexy...

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Diane Trout

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from: alienghic
date: Jun. 26th, 2001 05:45 pm (UTC)
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I hate the feeling of exercise too... It's just that a couple of times so far I've noticed myself feeling good afterword. It's a really weird sensation.

Though if I can actually feel better about myself it might be worth it. I worked in some yoga-inspired stretching in the morning because if I didn't do it I'd develop really bad backaches.


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Stephanie Wukovitz

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from: sebab
date: Jul. 4th, 2001 11:15 am (UTC)
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*nod*

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exercise is good for you, laziness is not*

from: anonymous
date: Jun. 27th, 2001 11:31 am (UTC)
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* erm it's a wombles referance! ;)

It's funny I met a friend at the bus stop the other day waiting to catch the bus to go a 15 minute walk, and he said he had just come back from a pub thing where they had all got together to feel sad about the death of Douglas Adams.

Anyway, he explained that Douglas Adams died in a Gym and I said I always knew they were bad for you! ;) He said that he had been thinking of joining one and so I was saying to him, why don't you walk home instead! It's not far!

Funny it's like the whole thing of people driving to the gym to go on a running machine!

He had missed the bus anyway, so was pointlessly standing around! I walked him most of the way home as he lives near me. That'll teach him! Wait for busses and you end up being talked to by crazy girls for the next half an hour! *giggle*

love

Moonglade

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