Quarantine Mental Breakdown

What happens when I stop working out for 3 weeks

May 25, 2020

I can't emphasize enough the importance of physical exercise in relation to a healthy mind. 

This quarantine has been a test to that thought.

At the start of the quarantine, all of my locals gyms were closed down, but through my new sports business, we hired a personal trainer to host some at-home workout classes live from our facebook page. I went from working out (at least 30 minutes of cardio) 6-7 days a week to simplified workout 3 days a week. 

And then right at the end of April when my contract with the personal trainer expired, I hurt my elbow and decided to take a break from the at-home workouts so I can rest it. Ultimately I went from 6-7 days a week, down to 3 days a week, then down to 0 days, all within a month.

At the time of this break, I was aware of the consequences of doing such action. 

You see the past 3 years, I've kept up with this workout routine and for the most part have remained relatively stable mentally. So, I knew that stopping such a routine could put that stability at risk.

The funny thing about your mind is that it shapes your reality. Quite literally everything we see, hear, feel, taste, touch and think is a direct result of electric responses to the brain. Our reality essentially is our brains interpretation of those responses, so taking care of it should be priority number one.

But for me, when I start slacking on that mental care, I start driving off the cart path. The best way I can describe it is like high and low frequency waves:

So when I workout consistently and have a solid routine, my emotions tend to look more like the low frequency spectrum. I have good days and I have bad days, but they're usually low impact and move at a modest pace. 

When I slack on these routines (usually pretty evident during a time of traveling for work or pleasure), I notice my days starting to look like the high frequency spectrum. During these periods I notice extreme highs and obsessions. I tend to feel emotions with crazy intensities, like thinking a meal is out of this world or become obsessed with a new idea. Usually these happy and exciting moments are then followed by lows.

No matter which I am (high or low) it tends to have a pretty big impact on my life. Just the other night I was watching a movie with my girlfriend and we had to stop the movie because I started having a panic attack which then followed with crying and then laughter. 

That was a result of 3 weeks without working out. Imagine trying to steer a car at high speed on a high frequency track versus a low frequency one. Your risk of crashing is a lot higher. For me it only took 3 weeks to crash.

Now I'm not saying everyone experiences the same things as I do. I know personally I suffer from mental symptoms that some people might be immune to, but regardless I think a lot of people can benefit from having a healthy mind. Like I stated earlier, your mind shapes your reality. So one that feels good, is going to have a positive impact on your life.

So, the first thing I did the day after having that episode during the movie, I went for a run. I could literally feel the tension being released. It's like what happens when you shake a soda bottle. It starts building up all this pressure, increasing the probability of an explosion, but by running, I'm doing something similar to slowly opening the bottle, releasing some of that pressure. 

After a few days, I'm starting to feel more stable.

It's amazing I lived about 25 years of my life operating in the high frequency space before discovering these tools. It affected my career and my relationships and now I've noticed a huge difference between healthy and unhealthy me, to come to the conclusion that it really is worth it. 

Working out is a grind, but the evidence is there.

So next time I decide to take a break, someone remind me of this moment. 

(wal•do) — Person
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