Thursday, March 17

March 17, 2011 - A Funk and What To Do About It

Note: For those that started reading my blog during the Indy Boot Camp series you will not have all of the background for this post.  Basically, the theme of my blog is to document living (or trying to live) a healthy lifestyle.. The healthy lifestyle I am trying to live not only encompasses trying to lose weight and exercise, but managing all aspects of my health also including mental and spiritual. This post is in regards to an abnormal problem I have with mood swings.

I am in a funk. It is a really good indication that your mental state is a bit "off" when you cry for almost an hour after leaving Boot Camp. Since Tabata Tod had not thrown a kettlebell at my head I knew the tears had nothing to do with Boot Camp. 

It is well known when I am in a funk by those that know me well.  Several of my friends at work have made comments and tried to offer some cheer. My sister gave me my birthday present early. Another friend sent me an online greeting. When a funk is not caused by anything external, these acts of kindness help, but are not the cure.

The goal originally set forth by Dr. Pita was to acknowledge that the funky and hyper moods will always be around, but I must learn to shorten their duration in order to minimalize their impact on my life. In order to accomplish this goal I must learn what triggers these funks. 

While crying in my car I realized what might have triggered this particular funk.  The following are the top candidates.

  • I am bored.  An idle mind is not a good thing.  Bad thoughts stack up and repeat.
  • The Japan earthquake and tsunami have caused me to beat myself up over even little "things" because I say to myself; "You are leading a charmed life. Think how awful it could be." I then start to cry for the suffering.
  • The hostility at the Statehouse by the union and non-union protestors. Just being around hostile people starts to wreck my mood. I have a tendency to be too empathetic.
Well, when confronted with a problem we should either tackle it or ride it out. In the past I would try to fight it in the wrong way or run from it.  First thing I am going to do is TURN OFF THE RADIO and not read the newspaper!

The second thing I am going to do is prepare for the next Peak based on the principles in Peaks and Valleys. Remember how I complained about that book?  Well, it has come back to haunt again.

Note: Peaks and Valleys is a story about how we all go through ups and downs. The key is how we prepare for each extreme that gets us through them smoother. I highly recommend this book. You can read what I originally thought of the book here.

Personal Training, Boot Camp, and Walking are now habits that get me through BOTH the Peaks AND Valleys. Even though I have been struggling I still make it to Boot Camp, Walking, and/or Personal Training.  For those that do not know me you would never understand that this is a major accomplishment in my life. I am able to exercise while in a funk. I am sure the exercise prevents the funks from getting worse. I believe the exercise has evened out the peaks and valleys.

During this time in the Valley, I am laying the ground work to prepare to focus on eating to LOSE weight not just MAINTAIN my weight during my next good or hyper mood.  Learning to eat for weight loss is a lot harder and requires preparation, concentration and energy. It requires a stay on the Peak.

I am living proof that I eat healthy. I have kept off A LOT of weight!  I learned many of the basic principles from Dr. Pita. I am going to take the lessons learned from Dr. Pita one step further by practicing some new principles about eating from reading the book The Metabolic Effect.

Over the next few weeks I will start to write more about my successes and failures with The Metabolic Effect. No worries, my posse members will still inspire me to write about them as well!  LOL!

Until then, I suggest turning off the television if you are starting to get a bit depressed. Do what you can to help the less fortunate, but you must remember to take care of yourself!  This was the lesson I hoped to convey today.

Take Care,
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Anonymous said...

The part I love about valleys is looking back at them once you have come out of them. So much wiser, so much stronger. If it weren't for valleys, we wouldn't have peaks.

Kevin said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Kevin said...

Sometimes it's harder to take steps to improve our mental health than it is for our physical health. (Can't exactly "count reps" for mental health. LOL.)

One thing I've learned about recently is controlling my environment. You are so right about turning off the TV. That's something you can control. When you see endless pictures/video of Charlie Sheen's latest shenanigans or the devastation in Japan, it affects you. Don't read or watch that stuff incessantly. Limit time spent talking to people about it. Watch enough to be informed...then turn it off, say a prayer, and donate to a charity. (This applies to both Charlie and Japan!) At least then you are DOING something about it and not DWELLING on it.

I hope you are able to break out of your funk! Keep up the good progress.