Conquering Depression and Anxiety Through Exercise / Edition 1

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Overview

One out of every two Americans will suffer from some mental disorder during their lifetimes, with depression being the most common problem. How do most of us cope? Usually, we turn to overeating, drinking, and smoking. In short, we treat our unhealthy mental reactions to the American lifestyle with even unhealthier physical habits.
Clinical psychologist Keith Johnsgard — an inveterate runner who is in his 70’s! — proposes a better solution in this uplifting book. Why not turn to exercise — one of the healthiest aspects of American lifestyle — as a means of improving not just our physical well-being but our state of mind as well? Though usually associated with losing weight and physical fitness, exercise does in fact offer many mental health benefits. Johnsgard inspires us to put on a pair of sneakers and start moving. He draws from a lifetime of clinical experience, research on the psyche of the athlete, and personal experience as an athlete to make a convincing case that exercise can greatly enhance our mental outlook. Further, physical activity decreases the symptoms of depression as well as psychotherapy and drugs, and with only positive side effects! Exercise not only reduces depression and anxiety, but also boosts your energy level and self-esteem.
If depression and anxiety have overshadowed your life, or you just want to improve your mental outlook while enhancing your physical fitness, this book is a superb motivator to help you help yourself through the healthiest, least expensive, and simplest method available.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781591021926
  • Publisher: Prometheus Books
  • Publication date: 4/28/2004
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 1
  • Sales rank: 1,403,579
  • Product dimensions: 5.37 (w) x 8.31 (h) x 0.65 (d)

Meet the Author

Keith Johnsgard, Ph.D. (Los Gatos, CA), is emeritus professor of psychology at San Jose State University and the author of the The Exercise Prescription for Depression and Anxiety. He has been a contributor to Runner’s World and an expert commentator, who has appeared on the CBS Winter Olympics (1994), Dateline NBC, the Lifetime Channel, the Learning Channel, A & E, and the BBC.
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Table of Contents

Foreword 17
Acknowledgments 21
Prologue: Sam and the Coyote 23
Part 1 Trouble in Paradise 31
1. Hunter-Gatherers Lost in Cyberspace 33
Out of Africa 34
Homo sapiens sapiens 35
The Shangri-la Villagers 38
Old-Fashioned Americans 40
The Twentieth Century: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly 41
Optional Premature Death in America 43
High-Risk Sports 44
The Birth of the Blues 46
The Dark Side of Americanization 48
The Silicon Zoo 49
Choices 49
2. Part-time Contemporary Primitives 51
How Many of Us Exercise? 53
Who Are the Exercisers? 54
Why Do We Do It? 56
The Research Groups 57
Personal Challenge and Self-Image 58
Health and Fitness 60
Weight Control 62
Mood Improvement 62
Centering 63
Afterglow 65
Experience and Mood 66
Gender, Exercise, and Mood 67
Social Motives 68
Competition 69
Addictions 71
Summing Up 71
3. Some Basic Concepts 73
Anaerobic and Aerobic Energy Production 74
Aerobic Training and Cardiorespiratory Fitness 76
The 1998 ACSM Fitness Report 76
Monitoring Training Intensity 78
Resistance Training 80
Heartbeats in the Bank 81
Part 2 Exercise and Mental Health 83
4. Moods and Self-Esteem 85
Just What Are Moods? 87
The Ways of Scientists 90
The Early Studies 92
Some Quasi-Experiments 95
True Experiments 98
The Experimental Evidence: Conclusions 100
Epidemiological Evidence 101
Too Much of a Good Thing 102
Changing How We Feel about Ourselves 105
5. Anxiety and Anxiety Disorders 109
Normal Anxiety and Anxiety Disorders 111
Anxiety in Normal Populations 112
How Do We Measure Anxiety? 113
Reviews of Research on Exercise and Anxiety 115
Exercise to Reduce State Anxiety: What Kind? 116
How Hard? 117
Duration? 118
Durability of Effects 118
Trait Anxiety 119
The Mechanisms: Psychological Theories 120
Physiological Mechanisms 121
Neurotransmitter Mechanisms 124
Subsyndromal Anxiety: Mechanisms and Treatment 127
Exercise Treatment of Anxiety Disorders 128
Panic Disorder 131
Phobic Disorders 133
Summing Up 137
Another View of Anxiety 138
6. Depression and Mood Disorders 141
Criteria for a Major Depressive Episode 141
Criteria for Dysthymic Disorder 143
Meta-Analyses: Exercise Treatment and Depression 145
Epidemiological Investigations 147
Exercise and Subsyndromal Depression: Experimental Studies 149
Anaerobic versus Aerobic Exercise 154
Exercise Treatment with Hospitalized Patients 155
Exercise versus Zoloft 157
Walking and Talking with Patients 158
When Is Exercise Treatment Appropriate? 161
Hypothesized Mechanisms: Psychological Theories 163
Biochemical Theories 165
The Biochemical Effects of Exercise 168
Summing Up 171
7. Substance Use and Other Mental Disorders 175
Substance-Use Disorders 176
Substance Dependence 177
Substance Abuse 178
Bipolar Disorder 183
Other Mental Disorders 185
Summing Up 186
Part 3 Exercise and Physical Health 187
8. The Wellness Umbrella 189
A Matter of Life and Death 189
Exercise and Longevity 191
Physical Activity and Strokes 196
Exercise and Disability 197
The Mechanisms 199
Coronary Arteries and Aerobic Training 200
Increased Cooling Capacity 202
Changes in Blood Chemistry 203
Exercise and Cancer 205
Breast Cancer 205
Colon Cancer 207
Other Forms of Cancer 207
Exercise and Diabetes 208
Exercise and Osteoarthritis 209
Exercise and Osteoporosis 211
Exercise and Immune Function 213
Back to the Surgery Ward 216
9. An Exercise Formula for Weight Loss 219
How Do We Know If We're Overweight? 219
Just How Dangerous Are Those Extra Pounds? 221
Life Just Isn't Fair 223
Diets, Exercise, and Metabolic Rates 225
The Solutions 226
Fit and Fat 227
The Fat-Burning Mantra 228
Converting Our Muscles into Fat Burners 230
How Do We Decide What to Eat? 231
Some Thoughts on Weight-Loss Strategies 233
10. The Risks 237
Exercise and Sudden Death 238
Age and Atherosclerosis 238
Catch-22 239
Injuries 240
Exercise Abuse and Dependency 241
Confessions of a Born-Again Runner 243
Part 4 The Art of Embracing Sweat 247
11. How Can I Make Myself Do It? 249
Realistic Goals 249
The Chunky Masses Are Not Our Friends 250
Television and Video Games Are Not Our Friends 250
A Personal Odyssey 253
Too Many Responsibilities, Too Little Time 254
Getting Our Priorities Straight 256
The Power of Knowledge 256
12. Doing It 257
Who We Are and What We Need 261
Avoiding Problems 262
Stretching, Warm-Up, and Cool-Down 264
Injuries 264
A Walking Program 265
Epilogue: A Bridge over Troubled Waters 269
Using Exercise to Cope with Stress 269
The Truth Cookies 270
Notes 275
Index 293
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