Tuesday, March 24, 2015


Psychologists studying how exercise relieves anxiety and depression suggest that a 10-minute walk may be just as good as a 45-minute workout. Some studies show that exercise can work quickly to elevate depressed mood in many people. Although the effects may be temporary, they demonstrate that a brisk walk or other simple activity can deliver several hours of relief, similar to taking an aspirin for a headache.

Science has also provided some evidence that physically active people have lower rates of anxiety and depression than sedentary people. Exercise may improve mental health by helping the brain cope better with stress. In one study, researchers found that those who got regular vigorous exercise were 25 percent less likely to develop depression or an anxiety disorder over the next five years.

Read all about it: Exercise for Mood and Anxiety, Proven Strategies for Overcoming Depression and Enhancing Well-Being, by Michael W. Otto, PhD, and Jasper A.J. Smits, PhD (Oxford University Press, 2011)

Fitness Tips: Stay Healthy, Manage Stress

If you have an exercise program already, keep up the good work. If not, here are tips to get you started.
  • 5 X 30: Jog, walk, bike, or dance three to five times a week for 30 minutes.
  • Set small daily goals and aim for daily consistency rather than perfect workouts. It's better to walk every day for 15-20 minutes than to wait until the weekend for a three-hour fitness marathon. Lots of scientific data suggests that frequency is most important.  
  • Find forms of exercise that are fun or enjoyable. Extroverted people often like classes and group activities. People who are more introverted often prefer solo pursuits.
  • Distract yourself with an iPod or other portable media player to download audiobooks, podcasts, or music. Many people find it’s more fun to exercise while listening to something they enjoy.
  • Recruit an “exercise buddy.” It's often easier to stick to your exercise routine when you have to stay committed to a friend, partner, or colleague.
  • Be patient when you start a new exercise program. Most sedentary people require about four to eight weeks to feel coordinated and sufficiently in shape so that exercise feels easier.


Thursday, March 19, 2015

Physical Fitness Keeps your Brain Young

The American Heart Association presented results of new research suggesting that people with poor physical fitness in their 40s may undergo accelerated brain aging.

Yes, poor fitness may lead to lower brain volumes by the time a person reaches age 60.

Uh-oh...you don't want a brain that's down a quart!

“Many people don’t start worrying about their brain health until later in life, but this study provides more evidence that certain behaviors and risk factors in midlife may have consequences for brain aging later on,” said Nicole L. Spartano, Ph.D., lead author and a postdoctoral fellow at the Boston University School of Medicine.

In the longitudinal study, researchers reviewed and then updated data taken from a group of individuals who have been followed for over three decades.

The study group included a subset of 1,271 participants from the Framingham Offspring Study who had participated in exercise treadmill testing in the 1970s, when their average age was 41.

Starting in 1999, when their average age was 60, they underwent magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) of their brains as well as cognitive tests.

The participants did not have heart disease or cognitive problems at the beginning of the study, and none were taking medication that alters heart rate.

In individuals with low fitness levels, the blood pressure and heart rate responses to low levels of exercise are often much higher than in individuals with better fitness.
“Small blood vessels in the brain are vulnerable to changes in blood pressure and can be damaged by these fluctuations,” Spartano said.

“Vascular damage in the brain can contribute to structural changes in the brain and cognitive losses. In our investigation we wanted to determine whether exaggerated blood pressure fluctuations during exercise were related to later structural changes in the brain.”
The researchers found:
  • People who had a lower fitness level or greater increase in diastolic blood pressure (bottom number) or heart rate a few minutes into the low-intensity treadmill test (2.5 miles an hour) had smaller brain tissue volume later in life;
  • People who had a larger increase in diastolic blood pressure during low-intensity exercise also performed more poorly on a cognitive test for decision-making function later in life.
Apparently the best way to not  lose your marbles later in life is to keep fit and healthy with exercise.

Stay fit,

Felicia Lawson

Wednesday, March 18, 2015


Withdrawal from opiates can be more dangerous than using them.

I strongly suggest a supervised medical detox such as that offered by the Waismann Method 

Laughter also produces endorphins, as does sex. Laughing at your partner, instead of with your partner can cause depression which requires more exercise. 

Exercise is great not only for withdrawal  but for depression, insomnia, lack of appetite, and feelings of helplessness.

"Fitness is not only popular, but is good way of producing endorphins and fighting depression. The endorphins can block feelings of hopelessness and helplessness and can treat some symptoms of depression, such as insomnia and lack of appetite. In addition, those suffering from depression will feel better about themselves knowing that they are accomplishing something good for them and are taking an active role in their treatment."

If you are taking opiates now, make yourself exercise. Start out as much as you can and build towards a longer, vigorous exercise. It will be the best thing you can do for your body. Even if all you can do now is a short walk, that's fine, it's a start and if you continue forcing yourself to exercise you will get into great shape.

Today, there are opiate cleansing methods that are safe and devoid of the dangers associated with non-medically assisted detox.  For more information on the Waismann Method of rapid detox,
call (310) 773-5385.

YOUR PERSONAL FITNESS PLAN ~ I'll work out a plan that fits your budget.  I also offer fitness programs for inpatient and outpatient treatment programs
No matter where you are in the USA, I can consult you and help you. 

Writers in Treatment