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It's Not You Or Your Partner's Fault: Blame It On Intimacy The closer we are the more we rub, sometimes soothingly but also irritatingly. Don't assume increased irritation and sensitivity is your partner's fault. It may not even be your incompatibility. Often it's just that intimacy brings out the touchy in all of us.read more
Marathons Are Tough On The Heart, But Training Helps Now that it's mid-April, thousands of amateur runners are realizing the time has come to get serious about their Spring marathon training plans.  The easier 4-6 mile weekday jogs increase quickly into 10-15 mile weekend long runs.  For those new to endurance distances, this jump in mileage can put a strain not only on the legs but also on the heart.  In fact, there's been some confusing research in the press lately with some claiming a marathon can do some coronary damage while others praising the health benefits of the cardiovascular training.First, the encouraging news.  To understand the effects of marathon training on the heart, Jodi L. Zilinski, M.D., of Massachusetts General Hospital, recruited 45 amateur runners who registered to run last year's ill-fated Boston Marathon.  While that race day ended tragically, the research was completed prior to the start.  As part of the Dana-Farber Marathon Challenge fundraising team, the test group of men, ages 35-65, were asked to join an 18-week training program including a running calendar, nutrition tips and coaching.Before they started on their journey, a baseline of health diagnostics were taken on each participant from cardiopulmonary stress testing to heart imaging studies to cholesterol screening.  Despite their eagerness to train, half of the group had at least one heart risk factor to monitor."We chose charity runners because we wanted to focus on the non-elite type of runner, just the average Joe who decides to get out there and train for a marathon," said Dr. Zilinski, who was the lead author of the study. "They turned out to be a healthier population than we expected with a lot of them already exercising on a pretty regular basis, but they were still nowhere near the levels of elite runners."Her research was presented at the American College of Cardiology's 63rd Annual Scientific Session.At the end of the 18 weeks, another round of medical testing showed some significant improvement:-  LDL ("bad") cholesterol was reduced by 5%-  Total cholesterol went down by 4%-  Triglycerides decreased by 15%-  Peak oxygen consumption, a measure of the heart's efficiency, increased by 4%"Overall, participants experienced cardiac remodeling -- improvements in the size, shape, structure and function of the heart," said Dr. Zilinski. "Even with a relatively healthy population that was not exercise naí¯ve, our study participants still had overall improvements in key indices of heart health."Even with this level of training, running 26.2 miles still takes a toll on our cardio system. Earlier research sent out early warning signs against too much exercise and even risks of scarring the heart in serious endurance athletes.In a study released last Fall, Dr. Eric Larose, of the Institut Universitaire de Cardiologie et de Pneumologie de Québec (IUCPQ), gathered 20 recreational distance runners between the ages of 18 and 60 who were signed up to run the Quebec City Marathon.  They underwent extensive cardiac testing, including blood testing and an MRI of the heart, weeks before the race, the day before the race and 48 hours after the race.Comparing the before and after race data, he found some significant short-term damage in the heart, including a decrease in left and right ventricular function in half of the runners. The heart also showed swelling and reduced blood flow."We also found that heart muscle changes were more common and widespread in runners with lower fitness and less training," said Dr. Larose. "Finally, we observed that these changes were transient."Luckily, three months after the race, a third MRI showed that the damage had reversed itself.  The takeaway is that without the weeks of preparation, the story could be different."The changes are more widespread among those with lower fitness levels and less training," warned Larose. "Although no permanent injury was observed in this group of runners, the findings suggest that there may be a minimum fitness level needed beyond which the heart can bounce back from the strain of training and running a long race. Furthermore, these results emphasize the need for proper preparation before recreational distance runners engage in a marathon race."Properly preparing your entire body for a grueling athletic event like a marathon requires months of preparation starting with a full physical examination by your doctor.  Daily tracking of mileage, heartrate, nutrition, sleep and even your mood with an athlete monitoring system will provide a complete picture of your readiness for one of the most satisfying accomplishments of your life.Follow us on Twitter: @DanielPeterson
The Doctored Results of the Concord Prison Study Between 1961 and 1963 a group of inmates at the Concord Prison were treated with a combination of therapy and psilocybin - a drug derived from psychedelic mushrooms. They had a much lower recidivism rate. Or so we thought....
Is This Mindfulness Thing Working? I haven't been mindful at all lately. I chewed up my daughter's Elmo fork in the garbage disposal. I keep making trips to the basement for things I forgot to get the last time I was down there. I drove off with my lunch bag containing my phone, wallet, and lunch sitting on the roof [...]
Religious music brings benefit to seniors' mental health A new article published online in The Gerontologist reports that among older Christians, listening to religious music is associated with a decrease in anxiety about death and increases in life satisfaction, self-esteem, and sense of control over their lives. In particular, listening to gospel music is associated with a decrease in anxiety about death and an increase in sense of control. read more
Finding turns neuroanatomy on its head Harvard neuroscientists have made a discovery that turns 160 years of neuroanatomy on its head. read more
Should I stop being a perfectionist? Striving to be the best you can is often positive, but studies show that this personality trait can cause stress and depression if taken too farDo you set yourself high standards? Did receiving anything less than an A grade at school trigger a meltdown? If you stress out about being anything less than truly excellent, you may be a perfectionist.Rather than being a cause of celebration and high achievement, this trait can put you at risk of emotional pain and cause you to procrastinate. While striving to be the best you can be sounds laudable, research increasingly suggests that this pattern of behaviour is frequently linked to depression, anxiety, obsessive-compulsive disorders, eating disorders and chronic fatigue syndrome. Continue reading...
Happy Easter, everyone! Psychology Muffins hopes your Easter celebrations are going well and the scavenger hunt was/is/will be very exciting. And because sharing is caring, here's a nice idea that will surely put a smile on someone's face: For the full instructions, please visit Poppytalk. The post Happy Easter, everyone! appeared first on Psychology Muffins.
Is sexual harassment a new normal for girls? Experts discuss new report on how young women view sexual violence and harassment.
Deliberately Forgetting Memories – Easy for Some We have all had memories that, at some point in time, we wished we could forget. Many newly published studies highlight the neurological and molecular mechanisms behind choosing to forget and suggest why disrupting this process may lead to unhealthy aging and serious mental disorders. It seems, that to some degree, one does find eternal [...]
Faith This is going to be a short post – it being Easter and all. I wanted to say how important faith is when you are living with a mental illness. I believe in God. Maybe you don't. That's cool. Alcoholics and Narcotics Anonymous focus on a "Higher Power." I think...
Ambush Firing: Is it Illegal? Large corporations have a strategy to get you fired once you've been bullied in the workplace. It's transparent to anyone who cares to look, but the company would rather keep it a secret. It's called "ambush firing." What happens first is the target gets bullied. It usually takes several months for him to notice he [...]
The Promise of Easter [The Promise of Easter] "God is reality itself." ~Carl Jung "What happens in the life of Christ happens always and everywhere. In the Christian archetype all lives of this kind are prefigured."... [[ This is a content summary only. Visit my website for full links, other content, and more! ]]
All over the world, outgoing behavior boosts happiness Researchers found that people in the US, Venezuela, China, the Philippines and Japan all have similar positive responses to situations that require outgoing behavior.
Out-of-office creative activities can boost job performance, problem solving, helping others Employees who pursue creative activities outside of work may find that these activities boost their performance on the job, according to a new study by San Francisco State University organizational...
Is Hookup Regret More Common in Women? Is Hookup Regret More Common in Women? The better the sex, the less regret. By Susan Kolod, Ph.D. read more
Grudge (Holding One) Forgiveness at all cost is not a good idea. Sometimes a grudge is worth holding, though it is difficult to know when the time has come. read more
Discovering the Purpose of Your Life: 4 Exercises Life without purpose...sucks. Four exercises to help you uncover yours.read more
Why Bigger Isn't Always Better In body parts, houses, and research studies, bigger is not always better. The most bizarre phone call I ever got came when I was just starting my job as a new Assistant Professor of Psychology, many years ago. A stranger called, saying he was picked me because I was listed...
The Pathological Potential of the Prep Pad New York Times health columnist Catherine Saint Louis recently covered the many upsides of a spanking new food analyzing device called the Prep Pad. In addition to weighing just how much food you're about to consume, this unassuming 9-inch-by-6.25 gadget syncs easily with an iPad (generation 3 or higher) to tabulate the grams of carbohydrates, [...]