Stimulative vs Exhaustive Behavior (Part II)


“Over the oxygen supply of the body
carbon dioxide spreads its protecting wings.”

– Friedrich Miescher, Swiss physiologist, 1885


It is our understanding that exhaustive action, or even talking excessively, can lead to a loss of CO2 and an increase in levels of lactate, which leads to a diminished ability to oxygenate tissues, as well as sub-optimal cellular functioning.

According to health researcher Georgi Dinkov, healthy activity for the mitochondria is that which is not strenuous. If you can’t hold an easy conversation while running, he says, you’re overexerting yourself and disturbing mitochondrial function. He mentions many hardcore endurance enthusiasts (considered to be in “good” health) as having cardiomyopathy or enlargement of the heart which could lead to chronic heart failure by their 40s.

“Exercise, like aging, obesity, and diabetes, increases the levels of circulating free fatty acids and lactate. But ordinary activity of an integral sort, activates the systems in an organized way, increasing carbon dioxide and circulation and efficiency,” writes endocrinologist and nutrition researcher Ray Peat, who goes on to highlight that ‘concentric’ muscular work [like deadlifting or a Getup] is said to be restorative: for example “contraction with a load, and relaxation without a load.” (Mitochondria and Mortality)

“Maybe lactate is not as benign as we thought,” says Dinkov. “Maybe it’s not just the result of a dysfunction but maybe it is a cause as well. If it is, then the role of the mitochondria becomes even more important because if you want to reduce lactate, if you want to cure all these diseases, you better restore mitochondrial function.”

The act of running until you feel like hell – or ding-dong-doing “As Many Reps As Possible” under the guise of health improvement, may not be the way to actually restore mitochondrial function.

If you feel stressed out, then, maybe go for a walk.

The option for stimulative instead of exhaustive behavior, presents itself also, in the form of anything you enjoy!

Try some Feldenkrais perhaps, or meditate through the poetry of a swinging bell.

Or eat more sugar in the form of fruits, honey, milk, etc.

Or breathe into a paper bag a few times a day.

All of these simplicities may either preserve CO2 levels or increase them, and favor oxidative metabolism over that which promotes lactic acid buildup.

So when you lift, sprint, hike, muse, or smell the flowers, maybe: let these wonder-things be – I don’t know – pleasurable!


Click here for part I of “Stimulative vs. Exhaustive Behavior”.

______ Notes______

Running Marathons Shrinks The Brain

Even 25 Minutes of running may be too much

“Exercise” that doesn’t lead to hyperventilation? Maybe: AWESOME!

“Exercise” that leads to hyperventilation? Perhaps: not awesome.

Stress Promotes Habit, Reduces Novelty Seeking