The importance of physical activity for our outdated brain!
Stress – Our Brain is too outdated and old school to handle the stress in today’s society.
I recently watched a program with Anders Hansen, he is a well known researcher in Sweden and has done research on our brain and how it functions for years. So stress is actually something that is necessary for as but only to a certain extent.
We have a built in system for stress and it actually works the same way as it did millions of years ago, isn’t that fascinating?! Knowing that generations before us was experiencing the same thing as we do but not in the same way as we do today. I really think it’s extremely fascinating.
Stress is not only something negative as Hansen says, it actually is necessary in order for us to function. Without the stress system in our body we would just sit there and do nothing. If you have a stressful week or day, that will not do any harm, it is when it turns into months and years of stress it can really impact you and your brain in a negative way.
So let’s start with talking about stress and what happens when you feel stressed. Looking back our fight or flight system was made up in order to know what to do in a situation when you were in a threatening situation such as running into a lion, you had to decide if you should fight or flee from the lion. What happens then is that your heart starts beating faster and pumps the blood out to your muscles which helps you to either fight better or run faster.
This is the same system we have built in today and it can get started with just being stressed about picking up your kids from school or being late to a meeting and when it does it doesn’t really turn on as high as a frequency as it did millions of years ago, but it does stay on for longer. The longer stress surcharge we experience today can instead have a tremendous negative impact on our brain and body which can result in things like chronic fatigue, exhaustion, depression and you name it. There are lots of newer sicknesses out there and it is because of our way of living a sedentary, fast food and stressful life. We have created an unhealthy, stressful society and what we couldn’t and still can’t upgrade is our outdated brain.
Our old brain is living in a society which has millions of years of advantage, no wonder that we experience overflow and burn outs. Have you ever felt like there are a million things in your brain floating around and you can’t grasp any of it? You just want to lay down with your head under the pillow, cry and hope for a better day tomorrow? No wonder that so many people turn to yoga, breathing, meditation etc because it will help you to calm down your old brain that is constantly stressed out 24/7 because of vibrating cell phones, instagram stories, TikTok videos, emails from left to right, phone calls every five minute, back to back meetings, kids screaming, a jam packed day from the minute you wake up until you go to bed. Can you recognize yourself in all this? Well, I absolutely can. I have worked a 9-5 job in an office and it is stressful.
Therefore I decided to go into health and fitness in order to be able to help people to a healthier, more active lifestyle. I want to help people feel better and look better so they can feel good and confident in their own skin. Well, let’s come back to that later because the thing is, if you don’t feel good on the inside, it is hard to look good on the outside. It starts from within.
So what can we do to actually feel better and to make sure that we handle the stress in a better way? Anders Hansen has the perfect recipe for you and it’s free and doesn’t include any prescription drugs or similar. The recipe for health is physical activity! For example when you are out running, your cortisol levels increase, when you are done running they will go back to normal again. The more you do this, the more the cortisol will go down after the physical activity. What it does is that you don’t react as much to stress as you should have done without it.
If you think about it, it is pretty obvious. If you are in better shape, you are more likely to actually get away from a lion alive.Even if we don’t have to flee from lions anymore our brain still works the same way even though the situations are different.
Hansen is saying that all physical activity is good but in order for it to help your brain to stress less you need to get your heart rate up at least three times per week for 30 minutes or more. The question is if we can add that little piece into our stressful and complicated life?
I don’t want you to feel bad if you are not prioritizing physical health, but maybe it is time? Even if you don’t feel like you have time, it is important to find that time somehow in order to invest in yourself, in your health and in your future. This is something that your future self will thank you for.
If you don’t like to run, don’t do it. Find what you like and do it. You can also add in simple things such as taking the stairs instead of the elevator, bike to work or just stand up and walk around more often. Workplaces today should incorporate more information in regards to stress and how important physical activity is.
Do you feel like you need someone there for you to help you get started? Someone to motivate, guide and inspire? I would love to help you create a training and nutrition plan in order for you to feel your best and look your best. Apply at
I would love to help you!