Depression & Robin Williams: Overcoming Mental Health Issues

robin williams“If there’s a smile on my face, it’s only there trying to fool the public.” — The Miracles, Tears of a Clown

By now most of the world has heard of the death and alleged suicide of actor and comedian, Robin Williams. While the world mourns, there are many who might wonder as to what could possibly drive a man of such talent, wealth and fame to kill himself. Unfortunately, depression is a real fact of life and doesn’t discriminate against those it selects. Millions of people suffer from it and other mental illnesses, and suicide is one of the biggest killers in our world today. Though sober for many years, Williams recently slipped back into the grip of addiction to alcohol, thus likely fueling his depression to terrible depths. While he did seek treatment through rehabilitation therapy, sadly he lost his struggle.

The one good thing to come of this is it has started the conversation on mental health and how we can recognize and support those who are in desperate need of help, even if it is ourselves. When we recognize those signs or that we have the capacity to fall into despair, what should we do? Are there ways that we can call out for “Oh Captain, My Captain!” when everything seems bleak?

Living Life With Affirmations & Core Values

In his critically-acclaimed film, Dead Poet’s Society, Robin William’s character of Mr. Keating tells his students that “words and ideas can change the world.” This is absolutely correct, and they can also be used to change yours. According to the site, Get Self Help‘s section on depression, writing things down can actually be a useful way of bringing your thoughts into focus, and a particularly useful tool in fighting depression. Through writing down your core values, aspirations, affirmations and keeping them close at hand, it can help you reach your goals more effectively. In his book, Strong, Fadi Malouf goes through his use of core values and affirmations to help keep him on the right track. “We all need affirmations. Small words or phrases to motivate us to action or help us persist,” he says. “Your core values need to reflect what you believe in and what you want to achieve out of life. By doing this, you can create action items around this to focus on your goals.” Some affirmations might include:

  • I will give 110% to what I do.
  • I am smart and capable.
  • I am my habits. My habits are me.
  • Be authentic.

When it comes to core values, try to focus them around the basics. Have you ever heard the phrase, Keep It Simple, Stupid (KISS)? This is where that comes in. Some of the basics would be:

  • Family
  • Growth
  • Success
  • Fitness 

To write your core values, you merely need to look at these and decide what is most important. For example, under Family you may want to say, “Being with my family is important, as well as supporting and understanding each of our roles in the family.” From there, you might want to have an affirmation that says, “I am a good father/husband/wife/partner.” By writing these all down, you can develop a sense of clarity, which can certainly help when dealing with the confusion of depression.

Fighting Depression: It Starts With Self-Care

patchadamsOne of the best strategies to mental health is to look after yourself, which means your diet, exercise and general stress levels. Keeping mentally fit becomes nearly impossible when these elements aren’t maintained. According to recent research, exercise can be one of the best things for depression, as it releases natural endorphins that make you feel good (Source: WebMD). When patients attend the doctor’s office for anxiety, depression or addiction issues, they’re often told by their general practitioner to embark on an exercise program in tandem with their medication and therapy programs. Patients who do this often find their mood lifting, as well as a better ability to focus.

“Exercise and meditation are great for fighting depression,” says Fadi. “I’ve had a few clients who have really found a change in their mood and lives when engaging in a regular exercise program.”

What To Do If You See The Signs

Though it’s not always easy to spot the signs of depression in yourself or others, it’s important to start learning to recognize them. Unfortunately there is no “tried and true” way of identifying it, but some of the signs may include low mood, absenteeism from work or lack of enthusiasm for previously enjoyed activities and even lack of appetite. Knowing yourself and your loved ones is really the key here. When you see changes, don’t be afraid to ask either yourself or your friends and family if something is wrong. Like any other disease, catching and identifying it early is very important. The more help you ask for, the more likely the positive results are. If you are concerned that you’re suffering from depression, don’t be afraid to speak to your doctor to get help for the situation. Your primary care physician will be able to either refer you to a specialist or suggest the appropriate course of action that’s right for you.

Additional Resources

williamsOne of the books Fadi frequently recommends is The Untethered Soul by Michael Singer. In it, it discusses living life to the fullest without limitations and can help you establish a blueprint for how you would like to map out your life. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy is also a hugely helpful tool to those with depression, and well worth investigating if you or a loved one is suffering. Finally, visiting a doctor is hugely important in starting down the path to recovery.

Be sure to check in tomorrow, where Fadi will be discussing vices. Can there really be a good vice?

 

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World Cup Soccer Series Part 3: Nutrition

World Cup Soccer Series Part 3: Nutrition

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     This is our third installment of our series World Cup training.  You may recall our first installment on the history of soccer and our second dealt with physical training.  Today we will discuss how nutrition plays a key role in training and playing the game of soccer/football.

Nutrition is a key part to any athlete’s success.

Soccer nutrition is different than that of a swimmer. Eating the proper macronutrients are vital to your success, the timing of each meal and the amount of each meal can have a positive or negative influence on your game day ability.

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It is important to remember to drink plenty of water. Stay away from sugar drinks such as soda, sports drinks and energy drinks. The body does not handle excess sugar very well, especially during strenuous exercises or during a game; in fact, most of the time, these excess sugars can cause your performance to fall significantly. World class athletes trust water over anything else.

 

Nutrition: Before And After Games

Understanding proper nutrition is vital, but following a solid regimen before and after the game is just as crucial. Here is a breakdown, starting four days before your game (or practice) and ending at a full day after a game.

Two To Four Days Before The Game:

Double up on your carbohydrates. Carbs hold water and they provide energy. Focus on consuming good carbs like whole grains like bread, rice, sweet potatoes and pasta.

Two Days Before The Game:

Drink at least eight (8) ounces of water every hour that you are awake. With four hours to game time, increase that to eight (8) ounces of water every fifteen minutes. With one hour left before game time, use the restroom and clear out as much water as you can. With thirty minutes left before game time, drink sixteen (16) ounces of water and then nothing else.

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During Breaks / Halftime

Drink water as you feel is necessary. Don’t overdue it as it can make you feel sick to your stomach or weighted down. 

After The Game

Drink roughly sixteen ounces of liquid carbs such as a smoothie or fruit juice. After about an hour, eat a fully loaded carbohydrate meal to replenish all that you have used during your game play. Stay away from fatty foods during this time.

One Day Later

Follow your normal food routine, making sure to eat full meals with a balance of fat, protein and carbs. Make sure that the meals are primarily carb based (energy full) and keep the fat at a minimum. Any fat that you do take in should come from products such as fish, avocado, chia or flax seeds or olive oils.

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Fadi Malouf, Coach Scott Black and all the fitness professionals at Body By Fadi, can help you determine the right fitness and nutrition plans for your needs. If your goal is to be a world class soccer player, then the programs that we offer will help you find your way.

World Class Athletes Celebrities Who Can Relate

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With intense training, drive and determination, it is possible to be a fantastic soccer player like David Beckham, Ronaldo,  Lionel Messi,  Zinedine Zidane,  Mamadona, Mia Hamm, Abby Wmbach, Marta, Christine Sinclair, Kristine Lilly.  Along with those famous players, some celebrities have been known to kick around a ball, Gilles Marini, Anthony La Paglia, Chris Harrison, Maksim Cherkovski, Tony Hawk, Kerri Walsh, Misty May-Treanner, Britney Spears, and Brandon Roth.

 

 

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World Cup 2014 Soccer Series Part 2: Physical Training

World Cup 2014 Soccer Series Part 2: Physical Training

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  This is our second installment of our World Cup Series. You may recall World Cup Series Part 1 dealt with History.  Here we like to focus on training your body.  

How to Train Like A Soccer Player

Soccer players are always moving up and down the field, so they need to be fast on their feet, able to endure long periods of time without any rest, and physically strong. Instead of focusing purely on size, they need to focus on areas such as full body strength, improving balance and overall endurance conditioning. For soccer players, they need to focus on exercises which will help them increase their speed, power and build up their core muscles. Our program is designed to cover every facet necessary to help you become a world class World Cup champion.

Getting Warmed Up

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Before you start truly working out, it is important that you warm up. Warming up the body gets your muscles loose and relaxed while making sure that your blood is really pumping. Warming up the body is like stretching before a long run … you just need to do it; otherwise, you could really hurt yourself.

Our dynamic warm-up routine is designed to maximize your blood flow, increase your heart rate, increase your range of motion and prepare the body for a strenuous workout.

  Plyometrics

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For soccer players, having explosive power and speed is an absolute must have. One of the best ways to increase your EXPLOSIVE power and speed is through Plyometrics. Plyometric exercises do not rely on heavy, bulky weights; rather, they are built off of bodyweight exercises and possible some static equipment. Plyometric exercises focus on quick, explosive movements such as lunging, jumping and stopping. These exercises can be dangerous if performed improperly, which is why it is important to have an experienced personal trainer working one-on-one with you. Our Plyometric program will help you develop plenty of EXPLOSIVE power and speed quickly, and safely, without wasting time in other less effective workout sets.

Strength Training

 There are four types of strength training programs for soccer players; they are:

  1. Off-Season Training: Focuses on building up your functional strength.
  2. Off-Season / Pre-Season Training: Focuses on maximizing your functional strength.
  3. Strength Training and Endurance: Focuses on building up your muscular endurance.
  4. In-Season Maintenance: Focuses on keeping your body in full working order.

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Our soccer conditioning program will help you develop speed, strength, endurance and agility; all of these factors play a big part in becoming a World Cup champion. Schedule an appointment  with one of our trainers like Fadi Malouf, or Scott Black, and David Baldovin .

 Stay tuned for part 3 as we look  into Nutritional Training 

World Class Athletes Celebrities Who Can Relate

 With intense training, drive and determination, it is possible to be a fantastic soccer player like David Beckham, Ronaldo,  Lionel Messi,  Zinedine Zidane,  Mamadona, Mia Hamm, Abby Wmbach, Marta, Christine Sinclair, Kristine Lilly.  Along with those famous players, some celebrities have been known to kick around a ball, Gilles Marini, Anthony La Paglia, Chris Harrison, Maksim Cherkovski, Tony Hawk, Kerri Walsh, Misty May-Treanner, Britney Spears, and Brandon Roth.

 

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World Cup 2014 Series Part 1 History Of Soccer

World Cup 2014 Series Part 1 History Of Soccer

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History Of Soccer and The World Cup

 

When and where exactly did soccer start? No one has an exact answer. Historians have found proof of soccer as early as 2-3 B.C. in China. Romanian and Greek historians also have documentation showing that soccer was played in the early B.C. era.

 

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Soccer has been around for more than 3,000 years and has evolved into what we see played day-in and day-out in modern day England. The older forms of soccer were more closely matched to modern day rugby (except there was punching, biting and gouging in the older forms).

In 1314, King Edward III banner soccer as he considered it “too violent”.

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In 1424, King James I of Scotland that soccer would be referred to as “football”. In 1815, a set of rules was put into place known as the “Cambridge Rules” which divided the colleges from schools. Cambridge rules actually put a stop to tripping, shin-kicks and carrying the ball (which was allowed in Rugby). In 1863, a fundamental set of rules was formed which pushed out many of the remaining Rugby followers.

 

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During the 1800’s, British soldiers introduced the sport to other areas of the world through their sailors and soldiers. In 1904 the Federation International of Football Association was formed and by the 1930’s different leagues were formed around the world.

 

Here are some facts about soccer you might, or might not, know:

 

  • Soccer is split into two 45 minutes sessions.
  • Each team must have 11 players.
  • At least seven players have to be present for a game to proceed.
  • The goalie has to be distinguishable from all other players.

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The FIFA World Cup captures the imaginations of the world like no other sporting event. FIFA is credited with hosting the first world cup in Uruguay. The last World Cup in 2010 had an estimated 700 million viewers.  The winning team receives 35 million dollars, the runner up receives 25 million, third place receives 22 million, and fourth place receives 20 million dollars.

 

Coming up next week: What it takes to train like a world cup player.


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