Exercise by Listening to Your Body

When I was young, I thought exercise had to be fierce and fast in order to be effective. I ran up mountains and mowed lawns at a speedwalk. Then I learned a principle that has made an immense difference in my life: Fast reps create aerobic benefits; slow reps with resistance create muscles. In my youthful zeal I was actually able to deplete muscles with over-exertion and under-nutrition. Since then, I've been privileged to be able to rebuild muscles by listening to my body and using what I call the "Slow & Hold Principle."

To accomplish "Slow & Hold" aim for slow, smooth, range-of-motion movements against resistance, even if only gravitational or isotonic resistance. Also hold at tension for ten seconds or more in order to activate the benefits.

Here are some benefits I have learned by listening to my body while using the "Slow & Hold Principle" in physical exercise. You see, "Slow & Hold" lets me listen to my body better than fast and furious. The "Slow & Hold Principle," used against resistance:

  • Builds muscle tone and density
  • Squeezes out fat and toxins
  • Increases circulation
  • Shapes bones
  • Increases bone density
  • Can have aerobic benefits 

Exercise Quick Results

For quick and noticeable results, pay special attention to these. Use the "Slow & Hold" principle moving through all ranges of motion, and holding for ten seconds or more at the extreme limit of movement. Resistance is good even if only gravitational or isotonic. Listen to your body to learn which benefits it discovers.

Tighten abdomen -- Gives your organs a hug and muscular support. Multiplies the muscle-building effects of many other exercises if done at the same time.

Tighten PC muscle -- Strengthens the floor upon which your internal organs depend. May lessen incontinence, constipation, diarrhea.

Smile with eyes -- Call it a smile or a glare, but do activate the conjunctiva by tightening the muscles that hold the eyes in place. May help visual focus and ENT clearing.

Move and stretch eyes and tongue -- Improves speech diction and tone. Tends to clear sinuses. May stall aging in vision. May encourage scalp health and hair regrowth. Improves face and neck muscle tone for fewer wrinkles and sags. 

When Not to Exercise

I cannot emphasize enough the importance of listening to your body, both for benefits and for warnings. Do not continue experimenting with exercise in the presence of any of these warnings, especially if they are sharp or sudden:

  • Pain
  • Nausea
  • Dizziness
  • Weakness
  • Muscle cramp
  • Gag reflex
  • Erratic pulse
  • Trouble breathing