4 Simple Ways To Boost Your Happiness and Relieve Stress (Part 2)

Rick:

I know when it comes to the long, boring cardio, it kind of brings two stories together. I know when it comes to people with knee pain and hip pain, they don’t realize that just by standing, which is not really doing anything, you’re putting a lot more force and stress to your joints. If you have knee pain or hip pain or an old injury, that just ends up putting unnecessary stress on that area. If you can’t offload that area, it isn’t helping you recover faster.

This leads to another story when many years ago, I don’t remember how old I was but one act of stupidity was me and my friends decided to walk from the Mexican U.S. border up to Canada. So, that was pretty much five months of hiking. Every day we would do half a marathon with 20 to 25 lbs. on our back. The one thing that we noticed was just time on your feet wore out our bodies. It would really put a lot of stress on our joints, our muscles, and on our bodies So, whenever we could, we got off our feet. When we weren’t hiking, we were sitting or we were lying down.

hiking

The same thing applies when it comes to long, boring cardio. It’s better to have that intensity for a short period of time – 10 minutes compared to low impact for a long period of time such as 60 minutes. It ends up being more stress and more strain on the lower part of the body.

Erin:

It has a lot to do with that inflammation. Small bouts of inflammation which are always caused with any type of exercise can be good for short amounts of time because your body can bounce back. But when you keep doing it and you don’t let your body recover, forget it! You’re going to feel it in your joints, you’re going to see it everywhere because your body just can’t recover.

Think about it, when you’re running, it’s even worse. Like marathon runners or just people running on the treadmill for an hour or outside for an hour. You get a three-time impact stress to your joints. Think about that! At a minimum. So it’s crazy!

treadmill-workout

So, if you’re 150 pounds, you’re putting 450 pounds through all of your joints or more. That’s a lot. It’s too much for your body. And that’s why I see a lot of total hip replacements and total knee replacements patients because they have been told the wrong thing. They were always doing the wrong type of exercise.

Rick:

Yes. Exactly. So let’s move on to the third trick, which involves the “10-5-3-1.” Explain what that is.

Erin:

What the heck are those numbers, right? So “10-5-3-1” is my easy way to remember (because I need easy ways to remember things) of my way to deal with stress. So, basically, the number

  • 10 – stands for trying to get at least 10 minutes of high-intensity exercising and no more than 30. 
  • 5 – stands for 5 minutes of prayer and meditation a day.
  • 3 – stands for writing down 3 things you’re thankful for each day. 

Number 3 is really important because when I started doing that, I was not writing it down, I was just kind of reflecting on it. Writing it down is really unique because you force yourself to write something different each day, first of all. And then over the years (because I’ve been doing it for a couple of years now), it’s really fun to look back and see where you were in your life and see how things have changed. It’s really cool. It’s almost like journaling but it doesn’t take long at all.

  • 1 – Try to do (1) random act of kindness a day, or more. That’s kind of a nice way to remember because all those things have been proven to improve your happiness and therefore, obviously, reduce your stress. So that’s my thing that I try to do every day.

So that’s the “10-5-3-1.”

Rick:

Who doesn’t want to improve their happiness? And just want to be miserable? Four easy ways of increasing your happiness, which of course, ends up decreasing your stress. That’s awesome!

Erin:

Yes and it makes the world a better place too. So, it’s a win-win.

Rick:

Yes, definitely a win-win. So, we’ve gone through the three tricks. Now, that’s everything I have for this interview. Is there anything that you want to leave people with? Is there a question I didn’t ask you? This is your chance to kind of leave the interview with one last tip or idea.

Erin:

Yes. One of the things that I always like to tell people that I’m coaching or people who are part of my program is, once you hit 40, I know when I hit forty, I was slightly depressed. I just think that so many people think that they have to accept aging as a negative and that they’re going to start having pain and diseases, and start getting wrinkles. I think we have so much more control over that than we have ever thought before.

Through these things that we’ve been talking about – nutrition, exercise, reducing your stress, and getting better sleep, which is a huge one. These can all really affect the way our genes express themselves and the way we age.

exercise

We can’t stop our chronological aging. We’re going to age every year but we can stop the way we’re aging. We can feel better, look better, reduce the amount of stress on our bodies, and enjoy life too.

Like I said before with the nutrition, it’s not like we have to be perfect. Enjoy and indulge every now and then. Something that really helps me, and a lot of people don’t believe this, is that I really enjoy a little bit of dark chocolate every day. It seems like an indulgence but it really isn’t because it’s so good for you. It has so many great antioxidants in it that are going to help your skin look better and help you fight diseases. So, have a little dark chocolate every day if you’re starting to really crave for something sweet.

Because on a daily basis, like we talked about before, it’s really important to be good so that when you do want to indulge occasionally, it’s not going to derail your efforts. I think that’s the biggest key. Life doesn’t end in your 40’s, 50’s, or 60’s. You just have to treat your body the way it deserves to be treated. That’s a little bit different from what we’ve been told in the past. That’s what I want to make sure people understand. So I don’t see you in the physical therapy clinic fixing your joints.

Rick:

Yes. No one wants that. No one wants therapy. Not the physical grind or the mental grind.

Erin:

No, it’s no good.

The other thing too is the “Sleep” thing because we didn’t mention that before. Sleep has a lot to do with stress as well and how your body ages.

Quick tip to get better sleep: About one to two hours before you go to bed, shut down all the unnatural light in your home. You want to reduce as much artificial light as possible because if you don’t do that, a hormone that helps you wind down and get ready for sleep which is called Melatonin will be disrupted and it won’t be released as easily. So, you won’t sleep as well.

Sleep-1

It’s a really big tip because I know especially with the social media, a lot of people are on Facebook or Instagram or Twitter in bed, on their phone right before they go to bed and it really has a profound effect on the way of sleep. So, that’s another little tip.

Rick:

That’s a good tip. Awesome. So, Erin where can people get more information about you?

Erin:

I have a website called TonedInTenFitness.com and you can check me out there. Toned In Ten Fitness has great 10-minute workouts, if you want to check that out. 

I also have a blog at ErinHealthAndWellness.com. 

I’m on YouTube under Erin Nielsen. I have free workouts there. Those are my three biggest spots. I’m on Instagram  & Facebook as well.

Rick:

Great, you’ve really been doing a lot more YouTube videos and video workouts for people.

Erin:

Yes, lots of free workouts on there and a lot of good tips about sleep and stress. Also, moisturizers I use, foods I eat – all those good things.

Rick:

Cool. Awesome. Thank you very much for your time, Erin.

Erin:

You’re welcome. Thanks for having me. It was a pleasure.

Rick Kaselj, MS

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