meditation for performance

Hello all. Well, let us introduce you to some “Hippie Shit”. Yeah, that’s what one of our clients called it. Guess what? It works.

According to Zuberant life…on a recent look into meditation for endurance athletes it does several things:

1-Reduces stress. Yeah it’s well known that stress reduction helps eliminate serum cortisol (bad stuff for endurance athletes, the related hormone that produces so many negative health consequences) but it also speeds up recovery time.

This from Pub MD: “CONCLUSION:

Mindfulness meditation lowers the cortisol levels in the blood suggesting that it can lower stress and may decrease the risk of diseases that arise from stress such as psychiatric disorder, peptic ulcer and migraine. Then, mindfulness meditation should be used in combination with standard treatment.”

2- You get to know your body! Knowing your body for endurance athletes is so HUGE. I’ve become more cognizant of whether I hurt or I’m injured. Mindful meditation has allowed me to assess if I truly need a rest day or recovery or can push through. Plus, giving this vital information to your coach is even MORE powerful.

Some have called it “Body Scanning”, being uber aware of the fluidity of each stroke in the pool, each foot strike on the run, and each pedal revolution on the bike.

3-Fear: Yes, it REDUCES fear. I’m not of the mindset of fear, I’m more in line with “reducing anxiety to perform”. Many of us, before our events, build up an unnecessary amount of performance angst. Whether it’s to finish a bike race with the group, or the expectations on you to win the race. Meditation can put you in alignment to focus your energy towards the right things!

4- Pain: We all know that sport sometimes is associate with pain. Pain is a complex word. I like discomfort. Pain is a road rash. Pain is a migraine. The high demand on the body during endurance events really makes it hard on your body.

A recent neuroscience publication: “In the study, researchers mildly burned 15 men and women in a lab on two separate occasions, before and after the volunteers attended four 20-minute meditation training sessions over the course of four days. During the second go-round, when the participants were instructed to meditate, they rated the exact same pain stimulus — a 120-degree heat on their calves — as being 57 percent less unpleasant and 40 percent less intense, on average.”

5- Sleep! How many times do we hear from our athletes and they say, after a longer or harder workout or event I simply can’t SLEEP! We discussed earlier what happens when you reduce stress. Well, sleeping is the anti-venom for stress and recovery. If you don’t sleep you don’t recover. Many reach for a sleep aid. MY go to sleep aid is a very nice meditated guided sleep. My sleep time has improved drastically from 3 hours a night to 6-8 hours a night!

6- Weight loss. Now, this is my own personal anecdote. If you are challenged by certain foods, meditation really does help. My weakness? Buffalo Chicken tenders! So, I have put into practice as a meditate “do I really NEED that food?” Hell, yeah I want it, but do I need it. Clearly not. So meditation really does help clear that pathway.

Hope this little blog kick starts you to better health and mind-fullness!