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HealthCare & Wellness Breaking the Chains of Addiction. The Last Door Recovery Society
Mature discussion surrounding important health issues and concerns. Alternative therapies, healthcare questions, discussion of community resources, peer support help, group therapy, etc.

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Old 01-06-2023, 10:13 AM   #1
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The general wellness & longevity thread

This forum is dead, but curious to if this topic is of interest to people. Slightly different than the workout thread, as I think regular exercise is generally a requirement. but what else on top of that?

Coming out of COVID which was a big challenge for many, as well as the new year, I am curious at what things people have tried or are doing regularly for mental wellness and physical longevity?

If anybody has watched the Chris Hemsworth show Limitless on Disney+ where he goes thru a bunch of different types of wellness challenges, and its quite interesting for those who are into this type of thing.

Since the beginning of 2019 I started gratitude journaling every Sunday evening as a way to alleviate the 'sunday scaries' anxiety, and I found that was a very useful practice to appreciate and be grateful for the positives in life. I'd say this was a 5/5 in effectiveness for me.

Since the start of my sabbatical I've been doing meditation (Insight Timer is a free app with lots of meditations) fairly regularly (5-6 times per week) and have found it to be a useful practice as a way to clear the mind and re-focus. Probably 3/5 in effectiveness, will see if it sustains when I return to work.

I've also tried to get back into reading, by getting myself a Kindle a few months back, which I have enjoyed. Gives me something more mentally stimulating but still entertaining to do besides doomscrolling on social media or binging netflix. 4/5 in effectiveness for me I'd say.

On the physical wellness side, I had done periods of cold showers (and plunges when I am near a body of water) over the past few years, not sure of the long-term benefits but I do love the feeling immediately after getting out of a cold shower. Getting in always sucks though. Tougher to do in the middle of winter when you're already cold, but it's manageable. Maybe 3/5 in terms of long-term effectiveness, but short term is a nice feeling.

I am currently on the tail end of a 2-day water fast. Hunger wise it hasn't been as bad, however I did start feeling physically off in the last 24 hours; a bit of brain fog, ongoing headache, and tiredness. No idea of the effectiveness of this long-term, 1/5 for now, will see what happens once I break my fast.

Anybody try anything similar that they've incorporated into their daily lives? Interested in hearing it!

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Old 01-06-2023, 10:37 AM   #2
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Honestly one of the biggest, more important things you can do is also one of the easiest

Stay hydrated.

I find that’s such a huge thing for general wellness and feeling good. Personally I know when I’m properly hydrated when I’m actually getting thirsty. I’ll drink water all day as somewhat of a routine and then come night sitting on the couch or whatever I’ll actually notice I’m physically thirsty for more.

Have also been attempting to get back into some sort of physical activity after prolonged period of eating carbs and heavy drinking on vacay. Try to do Yoga on a daily basis with the wife. Yoga with Adrian in youtube who I’ve always liked has a 30 day program on right now I like her approach and it’s relatively basic
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Old 01-19-2023, 11:15 AM   #3
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totally agree with the hydration part. i'm not that good at it but my gf is constantly nagging me to stay hydrated, she's right.

drinking less alcohol is one of the biggest changes i've made in the last 3 years. my partner doesnt drink, so that's automatically dropped my consumption by 90%. also with covid changing how often i hang out with friends, i might drink like twice a month now and only a few drinks (2-3).

i also agree with reading more often as a great way to exercise the mind. teaches you vocabulary, sharpens your focus, broadens your horizons. we live in a world full of distractions so reading a book is one of the best ways to just shut every external thing off and try to just focus on one thing only. turn your phone off, go to a quiet part of your home free of distractions and try to empty the mind of things going on in your life.

i went to a float tank last weekend for the first time and really enjoyed that too. the only thing i had to focus on was not touching the walls and floating in the center where i have almost no stimulus. that was literally the biggest concern i had in that moment, not touching a wall. if that's the biggest problem you have then i think that shows how well the tank is working.
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Old 01-19-2023, 03:07 PM   #4
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I drank a lot over covid but quit a few months ago. Not stone cold sober, but not an every night thing anymore. TBH I don't feel THAT much better; maybe I get better sleep now. But no worse either really, in terms of anxiety. I definitely know it's unhealthy to drink that much though, especially since I was making cocktails, so lots of sugar.
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Old 02-01-2023, 08:29 PM   #5
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1) mental wellness. I make it public in my calendar I have a private appointment from 12-1 PM. No one dares to take me away or double book me.
I ensure i take lunch cause oh gosh...i kept skipping meals when I'm WFH

2) I got out for a 20 min walk. Wife and I are stuck in a 400-500 sq apartment, so we make it an effort to try to go out 20 min for walks.
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Old 02-02-2023, 10:15 AM   #6
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1) Walk 30 min everyday or cycle in the condo gym
2) Weightlifting 3-4x a week
3) Been playing golf 5 -6x a week
4) Been yolo eating only sashimi + body energy + homemade salads to cut recently
5) Cutting almost all alcohol + avoid eating out
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Old 02-02-2023, 03:45 PM   #7
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Oh this is a great thread!

I hit rock bottom from a wellness perspective in late 2021 and early 2022. I had really bad depression and was diagnosed with general anxiety at the same time. I ended up taking 2 months stress leave off work. Spent a good chunk of the spring and summer focused on my well-being, including lots of breathing exercises. I would go to my RMT and we would spent the first 20 minutes just breathing. I realized I wasn't breathing properly and it made a huge change.

Started jogging once a week and spin classes twice a week for cardio. That also helped out immensely. I recommend spin if you are someone like me, and need the push of an appointment/schedule to get out and do cardio.

I also started reading more. My wife replaced my 10 year old Kobo with a new one. Stopped bringing my phone into bed and either read or listened to a podcast instead.

Then September 2022 hit and we gave birth to twins. Stopped spinning, jogging, reading, stretching, breathing, etc. lol. I feel like I have lost a lot of the gains I made in mental and physical well-being. I hope that once we hit 6 months and springtime comes, I can get back into it as my body feels like it is falling apart. Shoulders and back are killing me, I am exhausted all the time... haven't done any physical activity in 4 months now.
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Old 02-02-2023, 04:16 PM   #8
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I don't easily believe in a lot of stuff like home remedies or things like that... but I gotta say, for these winter months, I decided to try one of those light therapy devices... got a HappyLight from Amazon and it makes such a massive difference.

Like... I can feel myself perk up and get less tense within even a few minutes of switching it on. It's a total game changer for general moods on all these dark days.
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Old 02-02-2023, 05:11 PM   #9
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I lift 5x a week, and do hot yoga 1-2x weekly. Try to swim as well once a week.

Once April comes around I'll be biking 2x a week on top of all that.

As others have said really recommend getting a good walk in, but make sure it's in nature. The winter here in brutal when it's dark at 4PM and you're inside most of the time. I found it really helps to just drive out to North Van or Coquitlam and get a good forest walk once a week, it really helps reset your mind a bit. Walking in the city/neighborhood doesn't satisfy that in the same way.
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Old Yesterday, 08:20 AM   #10
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^ I have been wondering for years to myself how you watch so many shows on top of everything else lol
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Old Yesterday, 09:06 AM   #11
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Quote:
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I don't easily believe in a lot of stuff like home remedies or things like that... but I gotta say, for these winter months, I decided to try one of those light therapy devices... got a HappyLight from Amazon and it makes such a massive difference.

Like... I can feel myself perk up and get less tense within even a few minutes of switching it on. It's a total game changer for general moods on all these dark days.
oh i've tried this happylight thing from amazon late 2022 but didnt feel like it worked for me, ended up returning it last month

Did you have it on for like 20 minutes in the morning while working?
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Old Yesterday, 09:17 AM   #12
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oh i've tried this happylight thing from amazon late 2022 but didnt feel like it worked for me, ended up returning it last month

Did you have it on for like 20 minutes in the morning while working?
Yah I turn it on for like 15-30 minutes every morning when I'm working... I got one for my GF too and she uses it every day as well. I actually bought it for her first because she just moved here from Los Angeles and I knew the grey was going to get to her and she seemed kinda into that sort of stuff... but I liked it enough when I tried it to get my own.

I prefer the yellowish light settings moreso, the brighter ones don't do much for me lol... I was super skeptical but I really notice it. I do live in a kinda dark condo though (ground floor), if you're already in a well-lit place then it probably wont do much.
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Old Yesterday, 10:16 AM   #13
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Glad to see some traction in this thread after being quiet for a few weeks after my OP. Thanks for sharing your ideas and experiences.

Hydration is one I will consider taking up, I definitely do not drink enough water. Some days I might not even get around to drinking a full glass of just water (though I get water through coffee, taking vitamins/supplements, etc). Maybe that's something to try next.

I started going to the local pool recently and using the sauna. I must say, doing sauna for 15 mins and then jumping into a cold shower right after feels fucking amazing, and it lasts too. Not sure if it was just my first time, but holy shit I felt like I was on a cloud for the next 6 hours.

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I don't easily believe in a lot of stuff like home remedies or things like that... but I gotta say, for these winter months, I decided to try one of those light therapy devices... got a HappyLight from Amazon and it makes such a massive difference.

Like... I can feel myself perk up and get less tense within even a few minutes of switching it on. It's a total game changer for general moods on all these dark days.
I don't have a light for light-therapy, but I do have a philips wake-up light alarm clock that I have had for 10+ years and it's been fantastic for a more restful, less jarring wake-up experience where I wake up naturally with the light rather than shocked awake by a blaring alarm. I highly recommend it.

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I hit rock bottom from a wellness perspective in late 2021 and early 2022. I had really bad depression and was diagnosed with general anxiety at the same time. I ended up taking 2 months stress leave off work. Spent a good chunk of the spring and summer focused on my well-being, including lots of breathing exercises. I would go to my RMT and we would spent the first 20 minutes just breathing. I realized I wasn't breathing properly and it made a huge change.
I can attest to this as well with limited experience. With meditation and reading books about anxiety, I learned about the physiological science behind proper breathing and its affect on activating the para-sympathetic nervous system and de-activating the flight-or-flight stress response.

It's only been a few weeks since I've started this, but so far I have seen a big improvement in my ability to manage anxiety and 'unsettled mind' through heart-centered/belly breathing, as well as slowing my breath so the exhale is twice as long as inhale. It really helps when I notice my brain going off and I need to settle it down.
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Old Yesterday, 12:20 PM   #14
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^ I have been wondering for years to myself how you watch so many shows on top of everything else lol


It's a mix of working from home, and no kids (DINK).

We travel a lot too, and honestly I don't really party much anymore, most of the time I'll just have some friends over for drinks, and we'll watch some bullshit.

My girlfriend is also a nurse at VGH so she works nightshift pretty often, that means I can watch all my esoteric nerdy crap when I want
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Old Yesterday, 12:26 PM   #15
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I can't stress enough, travel, travel, travel.

I know some of you have kids so it can make it tougher, but traveling often has really done a lot for my overall mental health.

Having something to look forward to like a trip every so often just breaks the overall monotony of life.

I know so many guys that are married that never travel, or have kids that compound the problem, I feel bad for them. Sometimes you need a break from home being cooped up together in this infinite mouse-wheel we call life. Adding those little things like a trip somewhere breaks that cycle a bit, it gives you something to look forward to, something to motivate you especially on the physical end.
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