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October 26, 2016

Building Muscle Will Make you Feel High

cartoon hippie high
6928024 - junkie using bong

Hmmm… circa 1970?

Many in the Baby Boom generation at one time or another experimented with certain illicit substances that produced a high. Often, these were “dealt” by a shady looking character out the back of a VW van festooned with Peace symbols. I’m not naming any names here, but all you Boomers know what I”m talking about, whether you indulged personally or not.

Psssst… wanna get high on a purely natural, totally free substance with Zero negative side effects?

What if today I could offer you a drug that boosted your self-esteem, eased your pains, reduced depression and made you feel great — with zero chance of addiction? You can use it every day if you like. Sounds too good to be true, but that drug is real, and it’s free inside your own body. All you have to do is workout regularly to release it.

It’s called “Endorphin.” Sometimes called “nature’s narcotic” because endorphins are chemically similar to powerful drugs like Morphine. Scientists first came across them back in the 70’s while studying drugs like heroin and morphine. They found that our bodies have built-in receptors in certain cells in the brain and spinal cord that can block feelings of pain.

Long story short, this lead to the conclusion that those cells would only exist if there was a chemical occurring naturally in our bodies that required them. Recent advances allow scientists to accurately measure how endorphins are released during various types of pleasurable activities, like having good Sex or eating Great Food. It’s for real, and it is quantifiable.

So, rather than viewing working out as a drudgery, flip that script and put it in the same group as Orgasm and Fine Dining.

Back in the day, they called it “Runner’s High.”Today, vigorous resistance training has been proven to be one of the very best ways to trigger the release of endorphins. But you have to work for it. Just sitting on a bench and passively waving a tiny dumbbell around won’t do it. Experts say you’ll need to work out at least 3 days per week for 20-30 minutes, with 4 or 5 days of same being optimal. The harder your effort, the bigger the natural high.

Baby Boomers can build muscle And get a buzz at the same time!

In my own experience, I really love the endorphin high. It is so clean and natural and uplifting. Even though I’ve been training for more than 50 years, I still get pleasantly surprised by how it makes me feel, every single time. As I always say, your muscles don’t think. All that noise is happening in your head. I have a little devil who lives on my shoulder and constantly whispers bad thoughts into my head. When I visualize him, he’s a fat little version of me, smoking a cigarette and holding a beer. He says stuff like, “Dude, you can skip the workout today, we’re tired.”

Even after all these years, it’s a struggle some days to drag my butt into the gym. And every time I win that struggle, I experience the natural euphoria of an endorphin high. Suddenly, some of the things that were bothering me all day seem to be in better perspective. I feel better about myself.

On those tough days, I begin the workout reluctantly. That little devil keeps chirping away, until I eventually find my groove. That’s when I start to become mindful of the movement I am doing. I start to lose myself in the music and the Pump that is starting in my muscles.

Breathing hard. Sweating freely. Working out. Sounds a little like sex, and I guess it is in a G-rated way. Endorphins are also released during sex, so there are some definite parallels. A good workout is the experience of the physical, mental and spiritual all coming into harmony. It’s not about punishing yourself. It’s about reward. You stop the analytical thinking and just feel the groove. After you’ve finished, you just feel good. You feel pride in yourself for getting it done — in spite of that chirpy little Devil.

The endorphin high. It’s nature’s reward for your hard work. Even better, you’ve moved one step closer to your goal. You’ve built a little more muscle and defied the aging process. The endorphin high is a bonus. Try remembering how good it feels the next time that little Devil starts yakking in your ear. It’s easier said than done, I know, but I guarantee the Endorphin high is something you can count on, if you make the effort.

Thanks for stopping by!

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Photo Credits:
Cartoon dude with bong Copyright: <a href=’’>albiberon / 123RF Stock Photo</a>