Spiritual Adrenaline is a nutrition and exercise based lifestyle that is practiced along with the twelve steps of recovery.
The body is designed to move. If we do not move, the body begins the process of breaking down. Gravity pulls, we sag, and muscles that go unused atrophy. This is simple science, and the facts cannot be disputed. To live, we must keep moving. Our body is the only one we will ever have; we must maintain it and keep it in proper shape. Even after years of substance abuse our bodies can heal. The body has an amazing capacity to heal.
The body and mind are interlinked. Exercise is critical to maintain our physical conditioning. It is also critical to the proper functioning of the brain, which includes the production and release of chemicals that enhance mood and the sense of pleasure.
The Benefits of Exercise
- Expands the vascular system in muscle tissue and prevents high blood pressure and hypertension
- Builds up muscle mass and prevents muscle denigration, breakdown, and atrophy
- Stimulates activity of fat-burning enzymes and promotes the manufacture of constantly needed healthy energy for muscle activity
- Lowers blood sugar in diabetics and hyperglycemics
- Enhances bone and joint health
- Increases production of vital hormones that enhance libido and sexual performance
- Stimulates our sympathetic nerve system and increases production of adrenaline
- Promotes the production of endorphins and other natural opiates
This term describes the chemical and physical process in the body that provides energy for the maintenance of life. Spiritual Adrenaline principles seek to maximize our metabolism in a safe manner. The metabolism enables and supports the collective functioning of many parts of the body, such as the brain, spinal cord, glandular systems, organs, muscles, digestive system, circulatory system, and reproductive system. To keep your metabolism up, you must exercise. The more active your body is, the higher your metabolism.
Spiritual Adrenaline is about sustainable change over time, not unsustainable. To sustain over time, we must avoid injury. To avoid injury, we must avoid exercising like an alcoholic and/or addict and overdoing it from the get-go. I cannot tell you how many newly sober people I have encountered that are feeling so good after working out that they push themselves too hard and wind up injured.
Easy Does It!
Once we injure ourselves, we are out of the game. We must take it slowly, stretch, and respect our limitations. A Buddhist saying is, “Our body is our best teacher.” Remember this. If you feel pain, don’t ignore it. Acknowledge it, respect your body, and give it rest. Learn to do your lifting and other exercises with less weight and in the proper form. This will dramatically improve results while lessening your chance of injuring yourself.
Keep in mind that excessive exercise can also be an addiction and cause substantial damage to your body and mind. If you are interested in the topic or feel this may be an issue for you, I highly recommend “The Truth About Exercise Addiction”, by Professor Hausenblas and Katherine Schreiber. The book notes that “a major complication is that exercise is socially encouraged—viewed widely as a good thing…but exercise addicts can hurt themselves physically as they push too hard and then, all too often, find it difficult to pull back when a doctor demands a period of rest or a more restrained pace.”
Recovery Exercise: Relapse to Running
Running a marathon was never something I particularly wanted to do, and was NOT something I envisioned doing when I got sober. Marathon runners are impressive and inspiring. They train, with dedication, are committed to their goal, have tenacity and strength of spirit and fierce determination. When I got sober, I wanted all of those […]
Provide Your Body with Nutrients and Water it Needs in Recovery
When I train to compete in physique competitions, I cut back on carbs and dehydrate for the two days before the competition. In this video, I share how this impacts my physical and mental condition in ways that are not positive and why it’s important to provide your body with the nutrients and water it […]
Exercise and Eating Well to Manage Anxiety
Lots of people in recovery including me suffer from anxiety. In this video, I interview Amanda W., of ROCovery Fitness, about how she uses exercise and eating clean to help manage her anxiety. I hope you enjoy … Tom