The Home of Steven Barnes
Author, Teacher, Screenwriter

Friday, February 05, 2010

HuffPost Energy Makeover: Lifestyle Details, Old And New

If you must use caffeine, you might want to look into a caffeine source that includes phenylalanine (assuming you are not sensitive.) This supplies the component amino acids your brain uses to make norepinephrine, the brain's version of adrenaline. It is increased sensitivity to this that creates the caffeine "jolt." By supplying the precurvsive chemical rather than the chemical itself, you aren't hampering your body's ability to create this delicious sensation on its own.


But a critical missing piece can be exercise: moving in the morning to re-establish that critical mind/body connection. At the very least, breathing deeply while performing "joint circles" to decrease synovial fluid viscosity in the joints. Do you engage in the following nonsense?

1) "They" made me miss sleep. Excuse me? You made the decision to stay up late.

2) "I won't reach my ambitions if I get 7 hours sleep." Excuse me? You have time to read and write on blogs, but don't have time to rest your precious body?

3) "I will take "stuff" to help me sleep or wake up rather than exercise, eat properly, and learn to focus or release my thoughts." Great. Anything to avoid taking adult responsibility, learning to prioritize, doing what is important rather than what seems imperative. There is no one coming to rescue us. Adulthood is the moment when you stop blaming the world for who and what you are.
Read the Article at HuffingtonPost


BC Monkey said...

Hmm. More justification for my decision to never, ever touch Red Bull. (asides from the unholy cost per can)

etc @ said...

Now that I'm back to exercising regularly after baby, I find that I really enjoy a cup of coffee after my morning exercises. I talk with my husband and watch my baby roll around on the floor, and it's all very cozy. So I would say my need for a morning cup is more about association. I gave it up when I was pregnant, but immediately took it back up after my daughter was born. And now I just automatically pick up a cup.

But BC Monkey, I totally agree with you about Red Bull, especially after a certain age. Whenever I see other thirty-somethings still drinking Red Bull, I'm like, "Really, dude?"

Anonymous said...

Wow Steve, I would seriously rethink your suggestion on Nutra- sweet/ Equal / phenylalanine. I'm permanently injured because of the stuff. (and no i do not have PKU) When you get it from a natural source, there are other substances present which enable your body to process it. In a separated, processed form it acts as an excitotoxin in the brain. I used diet coke for many years, one day about 4 years ago i got dizzy and sick, couldn't hold anything down. thought i had a bug but it kept happening. I got diagnosed with Meneire's disease. Did some research cut out things with nutrasweet the attacks went away. one day i used some cold medicine that had nutrasweet in it. the attacks came right back. When the attacks were at there worst, i had vertigo attacks lasting about eight hours, i was totally helpless puking and dry heaving. i couldn't even read. I also had tinnitus to go along with it, a constant never ending test pattern sounding in my brain. Thankfully i am in remission now but i still have tinnitus some days and micro attacks every now and again. Apologize for the rant but id spare others what i went through.

Anonymous said...

Sorry Steve, you Never recommended Equal/nutra-sweet. simply suffice it to say better to get your phenylalanine from an egg with your coffee rather than an artificial sweetener. Langdon

Anonymous said...

"Whenever I see other thirty-somethings still drinking Red Bull, I'm like, 'Really, dude?'"

ah but 'dude' is still like totally okay!

Reluctant Lawyer said...

What happened to the post on addictions?

Ethiopian_Infidel said...

I too enjoy the delicious jolt of a great exercise-caffeine cocktail. Last week I stopped in a Starbucks en route to the gym. The coffee dramatically boasted the high from the brisk walk. By the time I reached the gym my mind and bod where cauldrons of raging energy that I spend on a fantastically grueling and satisfying 2 hour workout. And as fieceandnerdy says, strong coffee post workout adds a relaxing flourish to the exhilarating exercise high. Perhaps it's a healthy analogue to a phenomenon associated with smoking, where excited or nervous people paradoxically are soothed by ingesting a stimulant.

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