Are You “Working Out” Too Much?
“Everything in Moderation”
Many are quite aware of the powerful benefits of “working out,” but as the saying goes “everything in moderation” and the same is true for exercising. We currently live in very stressful times as many of us deal with information overload, long commutes, deadlines that need to be met, and bills that need to be paid. It’s no wonder that many people cringe at the thought of trying to squeeze tiring and stress adding exercise into their busy schedules. Then there are those who see exercise like medicine: The good stuff always tastes bad, so just take your daily dose, like it or not. But this is most often not the best course of action, especially when it comes to exercise. This is where I introduce you a different method known as “working in.”
“Working In,” Generates Energy
Working in is the direct opposite of working out. Where working out uses your bodies energy, working in generates energy for the body to use. Why is this, well because building energy and vitality in the body is a lot like investing. Just as it takes money to make money, it takes energy to make energy. Your body operates not as individual parts which is often how it’s studied, but as a connected co-dependent system. All the bodily systems are energy dependent, even the ones that produce energy. The circulatory, digestive, hormonal, and musculoskeletal systems all not only use energy, but also produce it.
Breathing, the Simplest Form of Working In
Take for example, the simple act of breathing. Starting as you expend energy to inhale bringing air into your body. Your lungs take oxygen from the air you breathe and attach it to iron particles in your red blood cells to be delivered to all parts of your body by the heart via arteries.1 The oxygen in the air you breathe carries a very strong positive charge, acting like the positive pole of a magnet, while your body tissues and the water in your body act like the negative pole of a magnet. If you can remember the information you learned back in science class, wherever you find a positive and negative charge, there’s energy and work potential.2 Therefore, breathing oxygen into the body creates energy or work potential.
Using That Energy
Once freshly oxygenated blood reaches the heart, there are two important things that happen. First, the heart acts like a powerful generator. It produces an electromagnetic field approximately 5,000 times stronger than that of your brain.3,4 The second function of the heart is delivering the added charge, from oxygen, to your body cells and systems. This form of energy informs your brain and each of your cells about your heart state (happy, excited, depressed, scared, etc.) and serves as a form of energy that cells use to perform vital functions.4
Using Your Muscles To Generate Energy
Let’s get back to the method of creating energy through movement, what I like to call working in. This method is rarely considered since most people only associate muscle work with fatigue or loss of energy. Fatigue and loss of energy result from excessive use of the muscles and body systems that support activity. This is particularly true when there is an imbalance between the amount of work or exercise relative to the amount of rest (recovery) time. Muscles, when not used excessively, help energize the body by producing electromagnetic energy and by acting as pumps to assist the action of the heart. When the muscles contract, tension is placed on the connective tissues that house your muscles, as well as on the actin and myosin protein fibers that cause your muscles to contract. When tension is placed on the fascia (connective tissues) of the muscles, an electrical current called a piezoelectric current is created.5 Contracting muscles also push blood out of the muscle and into the veins, helping to return the used blood to the heart and lungs to be recharged. When the muscle relaxes, it absorbs freshly charged blood from the heart and lungs. This fresh (recharged) blood contains valuable electromagnetic energy from the heart, electromagnetic work potential from the positively charged oxygen in the blood cells, hormonal and chemical energy.
The Simple Principals Behind “Working In”
Working in may sound relatively complex, but to do a “working in” workout in practice is quite simple. All you must do is apply certain principals or rules to exercises and/or workouts you’re already doing. These principals include: no increase in heart rate, no increase in respiratory rate (breathing rate), the tongue must remain wet (the tongue dries out during intense exercise), relaxed form at all times, and have an intent focus on breathing. An example would be 20 breathe squats, each individual squat is done with a slow 4 second decent (exhaling on the decent) followed by a slow 4 second rise (inhaling on the rise) back to standing. But remember if the heart rate or respiratory rate begins to noticeably increase, then the exercise is either being done at too high of an intensity or the volume of said exercise is too high (i.e. 20 reps may be too many).
Fact of the Week
The hearts electromagnetic field is so powerful that it not only permeates every cell in your body, it can be measure 8-10 feet away by sensitive detectors called magnetometers.7
Research scientists at the Institute of Heart Math have demonstrated that this powerful electromagnetic field of the heart is used to send information to the brain.7