Athletic Performance and Injury Prevention
Maimonides, the great Jewish physician and teacher, wrote, “As long as a person exercises and exerts himself…sickness does not befall him and his strength increases…. But one who is idle and does not exercise…even if he eats healthy foods and maintains healthy habits, all his days will be of ailment and his strength will diminish.”
Gifted as we are with this great knowledge about individuality, we also benefit from knowing that the best forms of exercise for our blood types or GenoTypes is that which directly influences our stress chemistries or disease susceptibilities for the better. For example, type O’s who do vigorous exercises have a better chance of raising their dopamine levels and eliminating excess adrenaline, two problem areas that probably link directly back to their type O genetics. Type A’s who do Tai Chi or Yoga-type stretching may actually help reverse tendencies towards artery inflammation, which are due to their having higher blood viscosity (thickness).
After a long career in martial arts, I’ve lately been enjoying road cycling. It’s somewhat meditative since a lot of the time I’m just cycling down the road, alone with my thoughts. In poor weather, I enjoy yoga and Tai Chi. However, being in my 50’s, I can tell that things are changing with my body. The strength is still there, but the recovery and endurance need to be better supported now than when I was in my twenties and could play two back-to-back games of full court basketball in 90-degree weather! I’m also stiffer the next day, and need to take extra time to stretch to help prevent injuries.
So don’t just stand there, do something! Proper diet is an important part of the spectrum. So is intelligent use of supplements in proper doses. However, neither will work to their optimum abilities unless you put the exercise factor to work in your life as well. You needn’t start with the goal of being the next Michael Phelps. Just start somewhere. The great thing about realistic exercise goals is that your level of fitness is progressive: The more you do, the more you can do. That’s why where you start is not important. In time your aerobic capacity, flexibility, strength and endurance will all improve and you will be able to do more. Plus you will handle stress more efficiently, have more energy, and feel and look better.
And don’t be surprised if you surprise yourself.