Endorphins 101

Grabbed this from People

Grabbed this from People

A couple years ago I was pushing myself pretty hard lifting weights under the direction of my trainer.  I was tired and whining as is my way and the trainer told me to just keep going and enjoy the endorphins.  I gave him the look.  You know the one!  On a side note, it does my heart good when I guy suddenly realizes he is in danger and he gets that stunned look on his face as his body kicks into fight or flight and you are the person who put that look there!  Let me explain why my trainer almost died.  I am all about fair play so if I am due some prize for busting my butt lifting weights somebody had better make sure I get my prize.  To my knowledge I have never experienced endorphins or “runners high”.  If running is required to capture these endorphins then I see where the problem is and I’ll pass on the prize thanks!

So how do I get my fair share of endorphins?  Is this a myth made up by people who like to see fat chicks run?

I did some research and here are the documented methods of attaining the prize

Have a Good Laugh – OK I like to laugh and I feel good for a while after.  Maybe there were endorphins involved.

Get Scared – People do like jumping out of planes for a reason.  I am afraid of heights and I do get a little thrill when I manage to survive a high place.  Not enough of a thrill to justify scaring myself though.  Now a roller coaster does give me a lasting feeling of euphoria but I always put that down to having my brains switch places with my stomach and the relief that it is over.

Positive Thinking –   Some people can actually think themselves into a state where they feel loopy drunk and have no pain?  Yeah, I think that is an advanced skill!

Acupuncture – Get jabbed with needles.  Maybe it’s related to the get scared thing.  I’m starting to see a pattern of big stress and big stress relief.

Enjoy the Sun – Well when the sun comes out after a week of rain I do feel pretty good.  Baking myself to a lobster red isn’t doing anything for me.

Exercise – There are two theories here.  One is that as cave men we needed to be able to run long distances and once we had reached a point where the body would start to fail, endorphins would be released to prevent us from feeling pain.  The other theory is that a big part of the endorphin release has to do more with the person exercising feeling positive about the accomplishment of a challenge.  So we already established, I don’t run, but I have biked many times to the point that my throat is raw from gasping for air.  Maybe I’m just not that impressed by my accomplishments so no prize for me.  I’m irritated now!

Be Moved Emotionally – Strong emotions on the level that would cause fainting, crying and heart palpitations will trigger endorphins.  I’ll take an order of George Clooney to go thanks!

Orgasm – OK I’m with you on this.  George you’re on!  Woo Hoo!!!

Eat Chocolate – Chocolate covered George!!!  I’m multi-tasking now!!

Get Pregnant – What!!  Hold up there!  George, get out!  Perfectly good fantasy ruined.  Seems we know something about that pregnancy glow.  At about the 3 month mark the placenta releases endorphins turning mom into a drug addict with the munchies.  The purpose is to encourage mom to increase nutrients and prevent her from feeling some of the discomfort associated with pregnancy.

So what do you think?  Ever felt the runners high, the pregnancy glow or the skydivers thrill?


Endorphins 101 — 4 Comments

  1. Not sure about generating endorphins, however as my pals in Y Women’s+ know they often hear (and sometimes complain about) me making noises while I exercise, I get my own kind of high physically exerting my self during my daily workouts

  2. I’ve had runners’ high but usually only in the winter. I love winter running! I really don’t like running (or walking, or standing, or sitting) in the heat…I think we should giive double-dutch another try. You might get a high out of that.

  3. Once I have slimmed down enough to do some jumping I plan on bringing my skipping rope to the gym. I will be the obnoxious person running/skipping on the track!

  4. Pingback: I'm .... and I know it! | Fat Chicks Fitness

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

CommentLuv badge

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.