Saturday, November 21, 2009

OK - I'll start running again...

My meager attempt at exercise - running - has dwindled to sporadic episodes this year.  I have iron-clad excuses:
  • I was traveling
  • I just got home
  • We were working extra hours
  • It was raining
  • My ____ hurt. (Fill in the sexagenarian blank)
 Meanwhile, my resistance to stress dwindled as well.  I must be part rat.
“It looks more and more like the positive stress of exercise prepares cells and structures and pathways within the brain so that they’re more equipped to handle stress in other forms,” says Michael Hopkins, a graduate student affiliated with the Neurobiology of Learning and Memory Laboratory at Dartmouth, who has been studying how exercise differently affects thinking and emotion. “It’s pretty amazing, really, that you can get this translation from the realm of purely physical stresses to the realm of psychological stressors.”
The stress-reducing changes wrought by exercise on the brain don’t happen overnight, however, as virtually every researcher agrees. In the University of Colorado experiments, for instance, rats that ran for only three weeks did not show much reduction in stress-induced anxiety, but those that ran for at least six weeks did. “Something happened between three and six weeks,” says Benjamin Greenwood, a research associate in the Department of Integrative Physiology at the University of Colorado, who helped conduct the experiments. Dr. Greenwood added that it was “not clear how that translates” into an exercise prescription for humans. We may require more weeks of working out, or maybe less. And no one has yet studied how intense the exercise needs to be. But the lesson, Dr. Greenwood says, is “don’t quit.” Keep running or cycling or swimming. (Animal experiments have focused exclusively on aerobic, endurance-type activities.) You may not feel a magical reduction of stress after your first jog, if you haven’t been exercising. But the molecular biochemical changes will begin, Dr. Greenwood says. And eventually, he says, they become “profound.” [More]

This year has been THE WORST farming year I have known.  Still, this is no excuse to roll over and let circumstance run my world.

This nondescript old body has brought me this far - it deserves better than my recent care.


Anonymous said...

worst farming year?? are you referring to yield,weather,prices or stress...funny the changes a few miles makes...this (other than still being a worst livestock year) has been a stellar year for all crops--no floods-nice 1956 dad said it was a total crop fAILURE,FLOODS,ECT. AND INDIANA less than 100 miles as the crow flies away had some of there best crops...last year our crops where 1/2 of 2009--safe finish too harvest all-kevin

livinthedream said...

John, I enjoy reading your blog, i check it every day. I'm in macoupin county il. I agree with you, this is the MOST difficult year ever, highest expenses by far, above average yields, lots of stress from the late planting and harvest, after this a normal year will seem kindof boring. Glad to see the freezup coming next week, it should let us finish corn. take care

John Phipps said...


Not trying to out-whine, but our reclaimed swampland had a hard time coming through with bushels. So in addition to all the weather headaches, our yields started heading south with later planting dates. Remarkably low test weights for a farmer who is used to 62-63#.

I'm guessing/hoping for 20 BPA below trendline.

Also we discovered on hybrid that really doesn't like wet, cool weather.

Anonymous said...

You need cattle--for one thing they'll put your crop stress in perspective and secondly, you can use them for forced physical activity. Just about 10 feeder calves ought to do it--they're cheap now. Store hay and a gravity wagon of corn 100 yards from the feeding spot and carry it to them--NO MECHANIZATION ALLOWED. You'll be fit in no time and next summer you can eat one of them.
Oh, and don't make your fence too good. You can get some serious distance running in if they get out once in a while.

Anonymous said...

It is very interesting for me to read that article. Thank you for it. I like such topics and everything connected to this matter. BTW, why don't you change design :).