Gym or no gym

A place to discuss health and fitness, healthy diets. A fit body makes for a fit mind.
daviddanska
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Gym or no gym

Postby daviddanska » Sat May 31, 2014 10:14 pm

As I have progressed in my studies I have begun more and more to understand all the distractions and ego that is at the modern day gym. In reaction to this understanding I stopped going to the gym, but now I have started to gain weight and my diet is worsening as well. :thinking: Should I go back to the gym? If so is the gym not just a way to boost ones ego and become attached to the body? This is a big dilemma for me. :shrug:

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cooran
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Re: Gym or no gym

Postby cooran » Sat May 31, 2014 10:58 pm

Hello David,

Just use a gym to increase your fitness and health. That is perfectly acceptable. It is not about image or showing off.

With metta,
Chris
---The trouble is that you think you have time---
---Worry is the Interest, paid in advance, on a debt you may never owe---
---It's not what happens to you in life that is important ~ it's what you do with it ---

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Mkoll
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Re: Gym or no gym

Postby Mkoll » Sat May 31, 2014 11:22 pm

Hi David,

You could also work out without going to the gym such as by walking around your town or exercising at your home.
Peace,
James

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khlawng
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Re: Gym or no gym

Postby khlawng » Sun Jun 01, 2014 12:03 am

Here is a quote from a talk given by Thanissaro Bhikku on Using meditation to deal with Pain, Illness and Death,

Many people complain that the hardest part of living with a disease like AIDS or cancer is the feeling that they have lost control over their bodies, but once you gain more control over you mind, you begin to see that the control you thought you had over you body was illusory in the first place. The body has never entered into an agreement with you that it would do as you liked. You simply moved in, forced it to eat, walk, talk, etc., and then thought you were in charge. But even then it kept on doing as it liked — getting hungry, urinating, defecating, passing wind, falling down, getting injured, getting sick, growing old. When you reflect on the people who think they have the most control over their bodies, like bodybuilders, they're really the most enslaved, having to eat enough each day to keep ten Somalians alive, having to push and pull on metal bars for hours, expending all their energy on exercises that don't go anywhere at all. If they don't, their pumped-up bodies will deflate in no time flat.


It doesn't specifically answer your question but it does give you an idea why we do the things we do to our body.
Hope that helps.

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ihrjordan
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Re: Gym or no gym

Postby ihrjordan » Sun Jun 01, 2014 4:25 pm

Walking meditation and a decent diet is really all most people need
"Ko imaṃ pathaviṃ vicessati, yamalokañca imaṃ sadevakaṃ.
ko dhammapadaṃ sudesitaṃ, kusalo pupphamiva pacessati"

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TheNoBSBuddhist
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Re: Gym or no gym

Postby TheNoBSBuddhist » Sun Jun 01, 2014 4:30 pm

Do you look after your Mind?
Do you 'train' it in Meditation, to calm the thoughts and discipline its function?
Do you see improvement with repeated effort?

Why then, neglect the body, which houses your mind?
neglect has brought about a problem; you perceive a deterioration in the body's condition, and it is not a pleasant perception.

So, just as you look after and nurture your Mind with sound nourishment (The Dhamma) and exercise (Meditation) so you are obliged to treat the body - its storing mechanism - in the same way.
Do not neglect what matters; but do not elevate it to a higher importance than your Mind.

That is after all, why our brains are on top..... :sage:
:namaste:

You will not be punished FOR your 'emotions'; you will be punished BY your 'emotions'.



Image

Pay attention, simplify, and (Meditation instruction in a nutshell) "Mind - the Gap."
‘Absit invidia verbo’ - may ill-will be absent from the word. And mindful of that, if I don't respond, this may be why....

walkart
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Re: Gym or no gym

Postby walkart » Sun Jun 01, 2014 5:10 pm

Hello,
Train your legs, it's more confortable and less painfull when your legs have developped muscles.

kilanta
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Re: Gym or no gym

Postby kilanta » Wed Jun 04, 2014 12:52 pm

daviddanska wrote:[...] is the gym not just a way to boost ones ego and become attached to the body? This is a big dilemma for me


Going to a gym is what you make out of it. Observe what your feelings towards not going are. Skip a session or two and see what feelings arise in the mind. Whatever feelings occur after you haven't gone to a gym when you usually do should show some hints about how attached you are and to what.

For example, you notice strong craving to arise when you skip a session. This hints that you might go to a gym just for enjoyable sensations during/after the workout or for looks. This is nothing to worry about, though. These cravings are then something to work with in future.

There are many conditions which might require you to work out too. Should you suffer from a seriously injured back, for example, do your workouts and keep yourself fit as instructed. That probably helps you more than just standing/observing the excruciating pain from slipped disks. If a medical professional has advised you to exercise, don't skip a session just because someone wrote here so.

Hector
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Re: Gym or no gym

Postby Hector » Sun Aug 17, 2014 7:39 pm

daviddanska wrote:As I have progressed in my studies I have begun more and more to understand all the distractions and ego that is at the modern day gym. In reaction to this understanding I stopped going to the gym, but now I have started to gain weight and my diet is worsening as well. :thinking: Should I go back to the gym? If so is the gym not just a way to boost ones ego and become attached to the body? This is a big dilemma for me. :shrug:


Of course you should go back :)

Cultivate your mind and cultivate your body as well.

Sound mind in a sound body.

After a sound workout my mind is clearer.

:smile:

Digity
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Re: Gym or no gym

Postby Digity » Sat Aug 23, 2014 8:08 pm

I lift weights...at home. I have a gym in my basement. I struggled with the whole ego issue too. At the end of the day, if I wasn't working out I'd probably sitting on my butt doing something useless. Workout, but just make sure you have the right intentions. Do it for health reasons not so that you can impress people.
Samsara sucks. #samvega

meindzai
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Re: Gym or no gym

Postby meindzai » Sat Aug 23, 2014 11:34 pm

The Buddha walked a lot. A whole lot.

Image


That's just his travels, and who knows how much he went back and forth, and where else he went. He also went for alms every day.

He walked a lot.

Now think of how sedentary we are as a society.

Exercise is a very good idea.

-Dave K

marieashten82
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Re: Gym or no gym

Postby marieashten82 » Wed Nov 19, 2014 2:16 pm

I go to the gym before but I started not to like it lately because I find it too boring and doing the stuff all over again. Watching exercise videos on Youtube helps me a lot in losing weight. There are so many good videos that help me to be motivated and some of the routines are very easy to follow and do.

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cooran
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Re: Gym or no gym

Postby cooran » Thu Nov 20, 2014 12:30 am

Try 10,000 steps per day..
I have a Fitbit step counter that is connected to an Internet site. This records what I do. I walk within a major shopping centre whose floors are .5 kilometre long, so going round it is a kilometre. It is cool in summer, warm in winter and dry in wet weather. As well, when I feel like a break, I can have tea/coffee or water - snacks even a meal. It is open at 6.00 am and closes at 9.00 pm. The early morning is good with Xmas approaching, as the shops don't open until at least 8.30 am. Need to resist temptation, as there are fast food outlets, but I've sorted that.
I write my daily total steps in a paper diary as well, as well as my weight for the day.

With metta,
Chris
---The trouble is that you think you have time---
---Worry is the Interest, paid in advance, on a debt you may never owe---
---It's not what happens to you in life that is important ~ it's what you do with it ---

denise
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Re: Gym or no gym

Postby denise » Thu Nov 20, 2014 12:40 am

mall walking is good...anyway if we don't work out or move the body....we won't have body or ego.... :bow:

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sattva
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Re: Gym or no gym

Postby sattva » Thu Nov 20, 2014 4:23 am

From someone who has several chronic severe illnesses, anything you can do to keep the body healthy is a good thing. I do think certain exercise regimens lead themselves to a more mindfulness approach. Among these are running, mindful walking, tai chi, chi kung, and swimming. I would also do some strength training with weights because they have discovered how beneficial that can be for bones. Most people also know that although muscle weighs more than fat, it is more beneficial and increases metabolism.

Good luck!

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VinceField
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Re: Gym or no gym

Postby VinceField » Fri Nov 21, 2014 9:38 pm

You can actually transform what was once a tedious or ego-inflating workout routine into an insight-promoting meditative exercise session. I have done this by focusing on the sensations within the body as I lift weights, especially the most prominent sensations in the targeted muscle groups, and being mindful of the nature of my mind's activity in reaction to these sensations. I have found that changing my thoughts and attitude towards these sensations, particularly the pain of the burn at the end of a set, has actually helped increase my pain tolerance and endurance. Some particular ideas I meditate on while lifting are the impermanence of the sensations, the fact that they are not me, and the idea that pain is not a bad thing to be avoided, especially in this case where it is a sign that the necessary work is being done to promote results.
Uhhh Something clever to give you the impression that I am the identity compulsively projected by my false illusory defiled ego?

Nicolas
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Re: Gym or no gym

Postby Nicolas » Fri Nov 21, 2014 10:08 pm

Yuttadhammo Bhikkhu: Ask A Monk: Physical Exercise

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VinceField
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Re: Gym or no gym

Postby VinceField » Fri Nov 21, 2014 10:44 pm

Nicolas wrote:Yuttadhammo Bhikkhu: Ask A Monk: Physical Exercise


It seems to me like this guy almost completely writes off physical exercise of any kind. I would imagine that in another decade or so he may change his opinion as he witnesses his own physical condition begin to deteriorate. There is a pretty convincing body of evidence that indicates lack of physical exercise causes many health problems, and his solution of eating less and meditating probably won't help prevent muscle atrophy and the long list of diseases that result from lack of proper nutrition.

He seems to take an overly extreme position which appears to exclude using skillful means for cultivating more wholesome states of body and mind.
Uhhh Something clever to give you the impression that I am the identity compulsively projected by my false illusory defiled ego?

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Reductor
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Re: Gym or no gym

Postby Reductor » Sat Nov 22, 2014 8:53 am

VinceField wrote:
Nicolas wrote:Yuttadhammo Bhikkhu: Ask A Monk: Physical Exercise


It seems to me like this guy almost completely writes off physical exercise of any kind. I would imagine that in another decade or so he may change his opinion as he witnesses his own physical condition begin to deteriorate. There is a pretty convincing body of evidence that indicates lack of physical exercise causes many health problems, and his solution of eating less and meditating probably won't help prevent muscle atrophy and the long list of diseases that result from lack of proper nutrition.

He seems to take an overly extreme position which appears to exclude using skillful means for cultivating more wholesome states of body and mind.


I think it important to see what he means by exercise: activity to obtain a physical state beyond what is needed to do your work, whether that be meditating in the forest or being an office worker. Specifically, he states that most people eat to support the exercise done so that the body can be enhanced, or that people eat too much, then exercise to stave off the consequence of doing so. Both of which are unhelpful, for the first, which seemed to be his focus, stems from non-acceptance that the body is a perishable item, control over which is fleeting and frustrating. The second reason was that people should be less attached to food, then they wouldn't need to do the exercise they do to avoid that.

Basically, he is advocating that we be fit enough to do our work, and that those who would follow the path further down should limit the food they eat and the physical work they do to only what is needed- as taking more than that arises from greed for form or sensual pleasure.

All this seems unsurprising for a monk to say. Kinda orthodox.

And it should be noted that monks often get fat and sick and die, and often stay thin and live long. The old school monks that lived more austere lives were thin and strong enough to live long - think of ajhan mun: he lived to 79 years old, which is not a short life. And he was mobile to the end.

Now, personally, I like to exercise. I run. I ran today. I'll likely run tomorrow. I'm thinking of taking up weight lifting. And I see a need to clean up my diet. My life doesn't conduce to quiet meditation in a cave, but to poor mental habits of various kinds. For me, exercise is a correction to my habit of sloth and overeating. Do I want to live like a monk? Maybe. I am undecided. Can I at this time? No. Do I begrudge monks for thinking like monks and prioritizing dhamma practice over my lay concerns? I'd be silly to think so.

So, to OP: if you live a wish to avoid the ego shit that goes with gym membership, then ditch the car, walk to school/work/stores/wherever (if you're going a long way, take a bus or LRT or subway or whatever), and buy only staples when you go to the grocery store. Then you'll have monk like fitness without the vanity.
Michael

The thoughts I've expressed in the above post are carefully considered and offered in good faith.

And friendliness towards the world is happiness for him who is forbearing with living beings. -- Ud. 2:1
To his own ruin the fool gains knowledge, for it cleaves his head and destroys his innate goodness. -- Dhp 72


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Mkoll
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Re: Gym or no gym

Postby Mkoll » Sat Nov 22, 2014 10:54 am

:goodpost:

I'll say again in case the OP is still listening that working out at home is a good way to avoid going to the gym and paying membership dues, traveling there, etc. If you have a bike, you can get a magnetic resistance wheel that basically turns it into a stationary bike. There are books like You Are Your Own Gym that have tons of exercises that require little or rudimentary equipment. There are lots of creative ways to exercise that don't require a gym membership.
Peace,
James


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