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How do you exercise?


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I have a real problem exercising because when my mind is left idle I'm eventually overwhelmed with thoughts that I'm going to hurt someone and stuff like that. The problem is similar with other tasks that require prolonged mindless activity but exercise is really the worst one lately.

I've tried listening to NPR and such but as I get out of breath it becomes harder to keep focused in on the distraction and the mind does what the mind does.

The pdoc has been badgering me to get more exercise more but he doesn't get that if my brain is left to its own tricks for an hour I end up really scared that I might hurt the people closest to me.

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Do you have someone you can work out with? I walk with my neighbor friend 5 days a week (weather permitting) and it helps to have the distraction. It makes the time fly by and before we know it 45 minutes have passed.

Even having a dog to walk helps. They need the execise and it helps keep you focused because you have to keep the dog focused on the walk and not sniffing around.

Croix

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For me, I can listen to mindless music on repeat literally for /hours/. Just set me up with enough water and huge block of time and YAY! I can smoke and run at the same time. hee hee...

But, for you, something a little different may be in order. There was a podcast I was really into right before the holidays, I think it was "History VS. Politics" that you might be interested in and that might keep your mind off things. Various podcasts like that might be helpful. Maybe audio books? I don't really know. Those are all I can think of for you.

Sorry, I go more for mindless things myself. I'm more like a hamster in the hamster wheel. Once I'm on, I just keep going till I spin in the wheel. WHEE!

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I swim for about 4 hours/week. I find that when I'm in the water all I think about is counting strokes/how many laps I have left/whether or not my feet are properly in line - that kind of thing. Exercising "on land" is a completely different story - I find it too hard to get into a mindless zone. I also have a buddy who swims with me. We don't talk much, but having a partner makes both of us want to swim harder and faster, which in turn leaves little room for obsessive ruminating. So, if you have access to a pool, I really recommend giving swimming a try.

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but he doesn't get that if my brain is left to its own tricks for an hour I end up really scared that I might hurt the people closest to me.
He might not, but I bet a bunch of us do. Can you break it down into more frequent like, say, 1/2 hour increments? Or at least start out at 1/2 hour 3x week (that's what I do, when I'm doing it). Don't push yourself into a drastic workout routine if you haven't done it in a while. Everyone gets bored and distracted, even those amongst us who don't have ADD. But for us (those who do), it is especially brutal and I'm surprised your pdoc doesn't get that quite honestly. An hour is a LONG ass time to stay focused.

eta: because I can't farkin spell anymore.

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I have the same problem, with the scary thoughts flooding in as soon as my mind is not occupied by something. I can't run, swim or do normal gym stuff for this reason. What I've found though, is that I can do climbing (indoor bouldering) because it requires that you pay attention to your every move, and it takes the thoughts away. Same with Ashtanga yoga (which is harder and faster than other kinds of yoga, and without meditation, etc.). The yoga is also great, because there's an instructor who tells you what to do. That way you just go along with it and don't have to rely so much on your own motivation to do it.

My best suggestion would be that you found a kind of sport which won't let your mind go idle. Finding a social kind of sport is a good idea too. Like... badminton maybe?

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Ditto what S9 said. I only exercise for maybe 15 minutes at a time, but it's hard exercise, and my mind doesn't wander too much. I do this maybe 3-5 times a day. My favorite is the exercise bike, where I can sit and count (yay) the seconds/minutes going by, or I can set it to the mileage. Setting it in front of the tv helps too. Even just the act of surfing can keep me busy enough.

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I have major issues with exercise, and always have. It has to be something that my brain doesn't perceive as "exercise". When I lived in the Rockies, I hiked and went skiing. Here in Hades, where it is 80 today, I am an indoor girl most of the year (the sun and meds do not mix). I've recently taken up Dance, Dance Revolution and Wii Fit, because I have to think about what I'm doing while doing something that I perceive as fun, and it's indoors out of the bad, evil sun.

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I've recently taken up Dance, Dance Revolution and Wii Fit,

Anelize, do you like the Wii Fit? Is it worth the money? It looks pretty cool. My kids have a Wii, and it's their opinion that the Wii Fit sucks (of course I'm sure they haven't actually, you know, TRIED it.)

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I've recently taken up Dance, Dance Revolution and Wii Fit,

Anelize, do you like the Wii Fit? Is it worth the money? It looks pretty cool. My kids have a Wii, and it's their opinion that the Wii Fit sucks (of course I'm sure they haven't actually, you know, TRIED it.)

I know you didn't ask me, but we have one (got it for xmas) and we love it. Even the 16 nephew gets into it. Granted, we're a really competitive family, but even Dad (in his 70's) has gotten in on it. I mainly wanted it for the balance games, since my balance is fucked, but the aerobic stuff is fun too.

It also allows you to set goals and stuff. So if you need help with that, it's good for things like that. It also tells you when to take a break too. (something I'm not very good at doing on my own) It also greets you and if you stay with your program it tells you that it takes dedication to exercise /everyday/. (wow, they must have low expectations of Americans, eh?)

All-in-all, it seems more like fun than exercise and it keeps my attention. Which is more than I can write about most exercise.

Sorry if this got off-topic, VE. Although I think a WiiFit would be awesome for you too. You really do have to concentrate on what you're doing and where your body is in space.

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Listen to or watch fiction? It's more captivating than NPR imo.

Borrow K's cell and talk on phone to someone?

Get a mini recorder and dictate notes?

I'll second what other people have said about shorter periods of exercise. Half an hour a day is a totally reasonable amount to exercise.

I like to walk places where there are interesting things to look at, and that can help occupy your mind. Neighborhoods with interesting architecture or rabbit infestations, insides of stores. If you don't want to be around a lot of people you could exercise at weird hours.

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I really have to multi-task with exercise or else I'll get bored, tired, or just frustrated.

I ride a recumbent bike and have a table along side it so I can surf the web and things like that. I'll also, sometimes, watch a movie or play my xbox.

These things keep me preoccupied and I even fine that I exercise longer that I initially planned.

Good luck.

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VE -

I also hate mindless exercising so I mix it up.

Twice a week I take a yoga class. I usually do not want to go, but since it is only a couple blocks away I manage to push myself out the door.

On Sunday morning I run with a friend. Always hope she's not available, but when she is I run and talk and huff and puff.

When I work in the city I'll sometimes walk to the train station and while listening to music or a book on my ipod.

I'll take the stairs instead of an escalator or elevator when possible.

In the summer I swim a few lazy laps at the local pool. Swimming though repetitive, requires concentration.

I'll walk to run errands in town, volunteer to take out the trash at home, return the library books on foot.

I like the idea of an exercise bike at home. I am currently scheming to obtain the grandparents very rarely used one.

Every little bit helps.

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