Just Say OM
4/10/2013 4:09:00 PM
I didn’t write this (obviously) but I thought it was such good information I wanted to pass it along!! With summer on the way and a lot of us becoming more active outdoors, isn’t it awesome to know just how good it really is for us!! I ride my bike to work occasionally in the nicer weather and often comment about the focus I have to have on the way! Between the cars and pedestrians, by the time I get to the station I feel like I’ve made it through some sort of gauntlet! But it’s well worth it cos I feel fantastic when I get here! Grateful to be alive! Especially after riding down Morrissey Boulevard!! (confession: I ride on the sidewalk as much as I’m allowed). I also ride some awesome bike trails which are more relaxing but I still have to watch for kids, bunnies, squirrels, dogs, cats and other bikers. I can’t wait for summer!!
The Bicycling-in-Traffic Meditation
We love how author/comic Tim Kreider says he is never anxious or afraid when riding his bike in Manhattan traffic. "You are forced, under pain of death, to quit all that silly ideation and pay attention. It's meditation at gunpoint," he writes. Any cardio workout involves the release of the hormone serotonin, which increases concentration and calms the amygdala, the fear center of the brain, says John Ratey, MD, a Harvard Medical School psychiatrist and author of the book Spark: The Revolutionary New Science of Exercise and the Brain. But if you're streaking through the streets on your racing red Bianchi (or doing anything that gives you a similar rush), you also get an extra boost of norepinephrine, a neurotransmitter that has the mind-sharpening, energizing effects of Ritalin and Adderall. You're running a built-in survival program, Ratey says. You're alert, in control and completely present—you're not worrying about anything else for once. (Break your anxiety cycle but not your skull: Remember to wear a helmet.)
Read more: http://www.oprah.com/health/How-to-Calm-Down-Meditation-Facts/3#ixzz2Q4kT982H