Finding Joy In The Fitness Process With IndyCore Fitness

Runner in the desert. Indycore fitness and wellness
Fitness Goals, Motivation, and Happiness

Years ago I was a serious runner.  I trained almost every day for a number of years.  I was very much into the “Zen” of running.  I loved the process, thinking about my form and enjoying that runner’s high.  Then I decided to run in a marathon.  I was so dedicated to this goal that I even continued my training while on a trip across the American Southwest.  I have a wonderful memory of running along the bank of the Rio Grande River in Albuquerque.  I have a great story about moving a large bull down a dirt road outside of Tucson to get back to the guest ranch we stayed at.  But once I completed the marathon I found it very hard to motivate myself to continue running.  This was because I was so focused on that achievement that I lost sight of the joy running brought to me each day.  That brings us to today’s topic:  The Hedonic Adaptation Prevention Model.  What a mouthful!

The Hedonic Adaptation Preventive Model

Research has shown that happiness can increase after major life changes such as a new romantic relationship or a new job.  Yet over time, the state of happiness returns to its previous level.  It becomes difficult to stay involved.  

This research resulted in the Hedonic Adaptation Prevention Model. The model helps us maintain higher levels of happiness derived from beneficial changes we make in our lives. The model has two components:

• The need to continue having new and positive life-changing experiences.
• The need to keep appreciating what we already have and curtail our desire to want more too soon.
Surveying Happiness

Kennon Sheldon, professor of psychological sciences in the College of Arts and Sciences and Sonja Lyubomirsky of the University of California surveyed  481 people about their level of happiness:

• After six weeks the participants identified a recent positive change in their lives that had made them happier.
• After six more weeks, the psychologists checked whether the original happiness boost had lasted. For some participants it had, but for most, it had not.

Sheldon and Lyubomirsky then tested and confirmed their model for predicting whose boost had lasted. They found that most participants got used to the change that had made them happy in the first place. Their happiness faded because they kept wanting more.  They raised their standards or stopped having fresh, positive experiences with the change.  For example, they stopped doing new things with their partner and started wishing they were better than they were. A few were able to appreciate what they had and to work at having new experiences. These people maintained their happiness, rather than falling back where they started.”

Other Factors

Genetics and other factors play a role.  Individuals have a certain “set-point” of happiness normally felt.  Some tend to be effervescent while others are more subdued.  Individuals vary in the range of their set point.  The research shows how we can train ourselves to stay at the top of their possible range of happiness.

Sheldon noted that a therapist can help a person get from miserable to OK, but the study shows how we can take ourselves from good to great.

The Acquisition Addiction

Have you ever felt excitement over a new acquisition such as an automobile only to find weeks later that the thrill is gone?  The best life has to offer seldom equates to new purchases.  Although new possessions can boost happiness, the item must be experienced in a new way each day.  We must appreciate what it brings to have any lasting effect on our happiness.

The problem with many purchases is that they tend to just sit there.  They seldom keep on providing varied positive experiences. Also, relying on material purchases to make us happy can lead to a faster rise in aspirations. The acquisition of “stuff” can become addicting. Many purchases turn out to be quick fixes to feed our addiction. 

The research suggests ways to reduce the ‘let down’ from those purchases. For example, if you renovate your house, take time to enjoy it and have many happy experiences in the new environment. Do not compare your new decor to the Joneses’.”

Finding Joy In The Process With IndyCore Fitness

Indycore Fitness takes these same concepts and applies them to the fitness work we do and the benefit we find in that work.  First of all, we should appreciate that we are able to make the effort.  Then we appreciate that we are able to reach goals and can continue onward.  Celebrating the achievement is important but it is even more important to appreciate we are able to do the work in the first place and find joy in the process.

Sitting Is A Pain…

indy core wellness and fitness stand-up for fitness

Have you ever heard the saying, “Sitting is the new smoking?”

Mayo Clinic specialist Dr. James Levine coined this phrase to illustrate how prolonged sitting is harmful.

One of the downsides to our information-driven world is that so many careers involve long periods of sitting. So many activities – driving, traveling, socializing, studying and working all involve sitting. How did we end up here? Is there some way to mitigate the harmful effects that come with sitting on our backsides for prolonged periods each day

The adverse effects of prolonged sitting have come to the attention of many employers.  So much so that many office furniture manufacturers now produce desks that can be easily lowered or raised throughout the workday.  Even if you do not have access to a sitting/standing desk, many cubicles have two work surfaces, it is quite simple to raise one surface for standing while keeping the other for sitting and then switch positions throughout the day.

Dr. Kelly Starrett is a successful physical therapist, owner of San Francisco Cross Fit, and founder of the Mobility Project. Dr. Starrett has made it his mission to give people a solution to this problem.

Check out the video below to learn about the standing desk. Switching to a standing desk can help you become more productive and successful.

Core Prescriptions

indy core fitness stretch
The holidays have come and gone and it’s time to get back to looking after myself. I began working with IndyCore Fitness to do some core strengthening. As I mentioned in the first blog of this series, I have been suffering terrible pain in the sacral area of my back and chronic neuropathy in my legs and feet for the past 10 years. I believe this pain can be reduced or possibly eliminated using IndyCore’s approach to core strengthening. Between work, social functions, and snacking on holiday treats I managed to get in another session with IndyCore owner Kim Rockey. Continue reading Core Prescriptions

Becoming “Road-Worthy” With IndyCore Wellness And Fitness

Indy Core Fitness Back In Shape

I recently began working with IndyCore Fitness to do some core strengthening. I’m getting old. I’ve been on this rock for 63 years. Up until age 50, I was very fit. Fit enough to run a marathon. Today I would struggle to run around the block. I suffer from chronic sciatica and back pain in the sacral area.

I completed one “starter” session with Kim Rockey and felt some immediate relief.  I decided to undergo a six-week regime to see whether core training can make a difference. Because of those immediate results, I am optimistic. I am optimistic despite having spent thousands of dollars on chiropractic, acupuncture, physical therapy, and cortisone shots.  I had also tried a painful procedure that involved burning nerves in the sacral area with a laser. I conclude the Dr was a quack.  I had resigned myself to accepting a life of chronic pain.  I must say that I found a small bit of relief in letting go of the anxiety and simply accepting my situation.  I have since discovered life need not be painful, that there are answers.

Over the next six weeks I will be blogging about the work I am doing with IndyCore Fitness.  I will write about the exercises and the results in diminishing the pain I have been living with for over ten years.

As with any serious fitness programs, there are things that must first be addressed. IndyCore asked me to complete a health survey.  The survey included questions about my recent health, family histories, and medications I am taking. Under certain circumstances, IndyCore will ask that you see your physician before training with them.

Once the paperwork was completed Kim explained some of the problems that can develop as a result of working in a seated position for many years.  I was a software engineer for 30 years so I have likely developed many problems. I can distill this down to a simple truth: Deskwork results in our hips shifting into a forward position because of our routine posture. Compounding this problem for me is scar tissue that remains from all that running I used to do. Kim had me lie on my back with a softball placed under the area that was causing pain and roll gently side-to-side. I was amazed at the relief I felt after just a few minutes!

Over the next six weeks, I am writing about the specific exercises Kim teaches me for core strengthening.  I will also give an honest assessment of the degree of pain I experience as conditioning progresses. I am looking forward to sharing my progress with you!