A post for the “Ultra Lazy”

When I say lazy I don’t mean in an offensive way. Sometimes we are just like that and that is fine. We have our moments, or life style. I accept it, I don’t judge it. Only when it comes to levels that interfere with reaching goals that are good for you, then, I would work on that.
In general when I say the word “lazy” I don’t mean it as something bad per say. Everything has a range of intensities. And anyway every one of us interpret words with his/her own way of thinking, ideals and socialization. If in your background you learned to relate the word “lazy” with a negative meaning, it will stick.   

If you know that sport (any kind) is good for you but still cannot move from the couch, something is blocking you. Maybe it is mentally connected to a childhood experience or any other reason, whatever it is, I have also some advises for this stage. I call it the stage of wanting to be active but still not there yet.

So before you read my post about how to start implanting exercise in your life, read this one, the stage before.

Researches show that you can build serious strength without even moving a muscle. Weight lifters showed that they can steer neural drive to and away from various muscles without significantly altering form. 
There is definite evidence of the mind-muscle connection. A lot of researches in sport science are testing the brain-body connection and the conclusion is that you cannot only work on a muscle physiologically, you can but it won’t be complete without brain activity that is focused on the specific muscles.

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When you concentrate and bring your attention to specific muscle, just the thought of activating it or repeating a movement in your visual memory has an affect on the physiological level.    
Some athletes use visual rehearsals. Jessica Ennis, a British athlete who won Gold medal at the Olympic Games, uses this technique, it is also called imagery.  (Here is a video that shortly describe it https://goo.gl/Bqb3qM )
So as you can see there is a connection and it is a crucial one to understand, even before starting any activity.

For athletes and weight lifters there are techniques in which they use to enhance this connection and improve their performance. As to you, I would like to suggest you to use the brain to activate and focus on your muscles in your every-day movement.
This mindfulness will help you with time to be more in tuned with your body, to move it better, to prepare your muscles for exercise that will follow as you become more and more aware of this connection.

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Our brain control the movement initially, it sends neural impulses (from our frontal lobe where the primary motor cortex is) to the execution of movement, and then it communicates with the second brain in our abdomen to action. It also weighs the amount of force we need to activate (for example if it is a glass of water we need to pick up or a couch).  

Next time you are doing an activity, any activity, bring your awareness to the group of muscles that operate the movement. Mostly to your core, but also your limbs, back, buttocks etc.
For example when you open a heavy sliding door or closing a heavy window, when you are washing dishes (contract the abdomen to make your core belt stronger and think about the lower back muscles as well); When you are hanging the laundry, bending to lift something, walking; When you are coming up from sitting, use your core and not your hands as an aid, every time you can, shift your awareness to the group of muscles that are working.
That way you ignite an engine, your brain will ignite the fire to start the muscle activation, it will improve the movement and bring some strength into the muscle.

This is me washing dishes without paying attention to my posture and core :)

This is me washing dishes without paying attention to my posture and core :)

With regards to visualizations, even without exercising, while you sit and meditate you can visualize your movement – it contribute to the muscle memory.  
You can actually sit, relaxed, breathe deeply and imagine a repetition of movements for sport (like squatting), focus on the muscles that are doing the sport in your imagination, and count.

I am not saying you can become fit and strong physically by doing meditation and visualization all day :) At some point you do need to actually activate the muscle with exercise, but this stage is one step before that can already improve your brain-body connection and attribute to your body, without doing sport yet :) .

* Here is a bunch of links with information about this fascinating topic: