Thursday, August 10, 2006

Mind-body complexity 

If 20th July's post was about an “Ah-Ha!” moment, then this one is definitely more like a “Doh!” Moment.

I’ve been feeling decidedly out of sorts for several weeks now, but couldn’t put my finger on any specific causes. The symptoms are mostly those of depression and have been beginning to worry me a little, but I’ve avoided using the D-word; after all, I don’t have any real right to be depressed, do I?

But whatever I might label this feeling, I think the penny has finally dropped as to its likely source. Up until mid May I was cycling 30 miles a day, 2 or 3 days a week. But since getting the motorbike, I take almost zero exercise. That’s a pretty significant change to the mind-body system. And if exercise therapy is a tried and tested treatment for depression, isn’t it also reasonable that sudden cessation of regular exercise might result in depression-like symptoms?

My intention was always that I’d continue to cycle perhaps one day a week, but as chance would have it, the week before I got the motorbike, the back wheel on my push-bike developed a crack at the edge of the rim. Heavy braking on gritty roads scores fine grooves around the rim, which concentrate the stresses as the rim wall flexes under braking loads and eventually results in metal fatigue in the weakened area.

I must get that new back wheel; in the complex web of cause and effect, it could do my mind a lot of good.

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