Vsaka ženska, ki se ukvarja s športi, pri katerih je pomembna dolgotrajna vzdržljivost, se na določeni točki vpraša, kako bo njen stil življenja vplival na obdobje nosečnosti oziroma intrauterini razvoj njenega otroka. Še posebej pomembno se je to vprašati pred visokoletečimi cilji, saj se žensko telo z distancami Ironman in daljšimi spopada na drugačen način kakor moško.
Strokovna literatura oziroma raziskave s tega področja ponujajo nekaj odgovorov. Med nosečnostjo je seveda nadvse pomembno, da razdelitev hranil med materjo in otrokom na eni strani zadošča materinim potrebam in potrebam razvijajočega se otroka na drugi. Prehranski status matere pred in med nosečnostjo ter njena telesna sestava imata pomemben vpliv na funkcijo posteljice, kar se odraža v razvoju zarodka. V posteljici oziroma placenti se nahaja placentarni A aminokislinski transporter, katerega aktivnost so merili v eni izmed raziskav. Placentarni A sistem primarno transportira majhne nevtralne aminokisline iz materine krvi preko posteljice v otrokov krvni obtok. Njegova aktivnost vpliva tudi na aktivnost vseh ostalih aminokislinskih prenašalcev, kot vemo pa so aminokisline bistvene za razvoj zarodka, biosintetske procese in energijski metabolizem. V obsežni prospektivni (Southampton Women”s Study – SWS) so preiskovali učinek materine telesne sestave in življenjskega stila na razvoj njenega otroka. Preko njihovih osebnih zdravnikov so rekrutirali ne-noseče ženske v starosti od 24 do 32 let. Preko vprašalnikov so analizirali njihov življenjski stil in izvedli antropometrične meritve, in sicer obseg sredine nadlahti (kar preko enačb vodi v količino mišične mase v telesu) ter debelina kožne gube (kar preko enačb korelira s količino maščobnega tkiva v telesu). Ženske so omenjene preiskave opravile pred nosečnostjo, v zgodnji nosečnosti (11. teden) in pozni nosečnosti (34. teden). Ob zanositvi so morale podati podatek kolikokrat so v zadnjih treh mesecih pred zanositvijo izvajale naporno telesno vadbo. Po porodu so zbrali placente za izvajanje meritev aktivnosti A placentarnega transporterja.
Ugotovili so, da je aktivnost placentarnega A transporterja signifikantno večja pri materah z večjim obsegom nadlahti pred nosečnostjo in ob 11. tednu nosečnosti, medtem ko v 34. tednu nosečnosti te povezave več ni bilo. Ni pa bilo najdene pomembne povezave med velikostjo kožne gube in aktivnostjo placentarnega A transporterja. Kako si lahko razložimo te ugotovitve?Matere z višjo mišično maso so v boljšem nutricijskem statusu, saj je 60% naših proteinov shranjenih v skeletnih mišicah. Skeletne mišice najverjetneje sproščajo endokrini faktor, kateri placenti sporoča, da je “varno” prenašati večje količine proteinov otroku, saj materino zdravje in njena prihodnja plodnost ne bo trpela. Zato je v nosečnost dobro vstopiti v dobri fizični formi in z utrjenim fizičnim telesom.Vendar pa vsaj 3 mesece pred zanositvijo ne smemo prakticirati napornih športnih preizkušenj, saj telo v tem primeru začne varčevati s proteini za svoje energijske zahteve.
Tematika je zelo obširna, z mnogimi pristopi do obravnavanega vprašanja., tako da se bom tudi v naslednjih prispevkih posvetila tej tematiki.
Night training runs were “invented” by ŠPT Pro Tek and its leader Gorazd Jordan. So far both of us with Iztok have participated in five such events. This are three hour runs (desired distance app. 30 km) usually starting at 10 PM or at midnight. 🙂
We started in January 2014 with “Polnočna 31ka”. It was a lovely run starting at midnight in front of Mercator center Pobrežje. There were seven of us and we started a few minutes after midnight. It was a flat course in the city and on the outskirts, after 20 km our pace really started deteriorating since it was already 2 AM. One of the coldest runs in my lifetime was “Jacob”s Ladder” in February. Though we started at 10 PM it was freezing -15 degrees and a clear winter night with stars on the sky. After three hours of running in winter conditions, we were stone hard, tired… and happy that we finished, A few days ago we started training for the following season and the run was called “3 urni Betnava helikopter”. Why? We did three hours of 2,5 km circles in Betnava. As always, we were awarded with a chocolate medal and a pack of coffe this time.
The following day we went on a short mountain bike training ride on Pohorje and again we were awarded with this spectacular fog view on Maribor. 🙂 We already have a few Ironman distance triathlons in mind to race the following year and in combination with this view the training motivation is only rising. If you try it once, you want to do it again and again. 🙂
Recently, I have come across a book with the above written title. We are probably all familiar with the so called mind wandering. Mind wandering is that constant inner chatter with yourself: all the many things I have to do today; the wrong thing I said to a certain person; what should I say instead; when do I have to pay my bills. What happens when our mind wanders? Our sensory system shuts down and we are not aware of here and now. On the other hand, when we focus on the here and now, neural circuits for mind wandering go dim. Our focus is “situated” in our prefrontal cortex and it is an important executive function for wich we have to try for. Whenever we find ourself in a mind wandering position, it is cruical to bring our attention back to what we are doing. As we practice, we will get stronger and stronger and the first results will come within a week. Our inner chatter rising from our amygdala will get weaker and weaker and our prefrontal cortex will be able to say a clear “yes” or “no” to the inner impulses. Here is a few fact:
The most preponderant daily routine to practice in your focus and mindfullnes is meditation. It can only take a few minutes per day.There is a story about a lawyer whose mind was filled with tasks, he was relentless in pursuing his cases, often he would lie awake much of the night thinking about the next strategy for his clients. Then, on a vacation, he met a woman who taught meditation. She led him through the steps in eating one of the raisins slowly and with full focus, savoring the richness of every moment in that process: the sensation as he lifted it into his mouth and chewed, the burst of flavors as he bit into it, the sounds of eating. When we turn such full attention to our senses, the brain quiets its default chatter. Powerful focus brings a sense of peace, and with it, joy.
There is a famous “marshmallow test” in a legendary study by psychologist Walter Mischel to test the child”s self-awareness and focus. He invited four-year-olds one by one into a “game room” at the Bing Nursery School on the Stanford campus. In a room the child was shown a tray with marshmallows or other treats and told to pick one, Then came the hard part, The experimenter told the child, “You can have your treat now, if you want. But if you do not eat it until I come back from running an errand, you can have two then.” The room was sanitized of distractions: no toys, no books, not even a picture. Self-control was a major feat for a four-year-old under such dire conditions. About a third grabbed the marshmallow on the spot, while another third waited the endless fifteen minutes until they were rewarded with two (the other third fell somewhere in the middle). After two decades, the kids who were better in their self-control in childhood, had less health problems, had not been convicetd of a crime and were financially stable. Bottom line: do not underestimate the value of regular practicing the quitar for your child or keeping the promise to clean and feed the guinea pig and its cage.
Good executive functions and emotional intelligence (as cognitive control is sometimes called) predict good math and reading scores throughout school much better than a child”s IQ.
The correlation between attention and relative social power shows a simple metric: how long does it take for a person A to respond on an email from a person B? The longer someone ignores an email before finally responding, the more relatie social power that person has. Map these response times across an entire organization and you get a remarkably acccurate chart of the actual social standing. The boss leaves emails unanswered for hours or days; those lower down respond within minutes. There is an algorithm for this, a data mining method called “automated social hierarchy detection” developed at Columbia University. Intelligence agencies have been applying the same metric to suspected terrorist gangs, piecing together the chain of influence to spot the central figures.
In countries like USA and Singapore children in second and third grade undergo a specific training included in their school programme. It is called “social and emotional learning” or SEL. This programme boosts their self-awarenees and cognitive control by practicing on child”s focus and mindfulness. Here is a practical example of SEL in schools. When a teacher strikes a melodious chime, the kids silently gather on a large rug, sitting in rows, cross-leged. One girl goes over to the classroom door, puts a DO NOT DISTURB sign on th eoutside knob, and closes it. Boys and girls then find a spot on the floor to lie down, put their stuffed animal buddy (a pink pig, a yellow puppy, a purple donkey, etc.)on their belly and wait, hands to their sides. Then they follow the directions of a friendly voice leading them through some deep belly breathing, as they count to themselves “one, two, three” while they take a long exhalation and inhalation. After a few minutes it end with a voice saying “now sit up and feel relaxed”, and as they do, they all seem to be just that. This exercise in the SEL programme has a name “Breathing Buddies”. There are also many other techniques, like the stoplight. When second and third graders in a Seattle school are getting upset, they are told to think of a traffic signal. Red light means stop-calm down. Take a long, deep breath and as you calm down a bit, tell yourself what the problem is and how you feel. The yellow light reminds them to slow down and think of several possibilities that might solve the problem, then choose which is best. The green light signals them to try out the plan and see how it works. The stoplight rehearses the shift from bottom up, amygdala-driven impulse, to top down, prefrontal executive-driven attention. You can find more about SEL and books about this topic here:http://www.casel.org/social-and-emotional-learning/ Well, it is worth mentioning that Singapore has become the first country in the world to require every one of its students go through an SEL programme. The tiny city-state represents one of the great economic success stories of the last fifty years. Singapore has no natural resources, no great army, no special political sway. It secrets lie in its people – an outstanding workforce with an eye towards the future. Also the safest country in the world with lowest criminal rates. I have been there in 2014 and I can tell what discipline and self-control means. It would most surely be worth to bring SEL techniques into Slovenian kindergartens and primary schools.
So the universal instructions are these: when your mind wanders – and you notice that it has wandered – bring it back to your point of focus and sustain your attention there. And when your mind wanders off again, do the same. And again. And again. And again. During mind wandering the brain activates the usual medial circuitry. At the moment you notice your mind has wandered, another attention network perks up. And as you shift focus back ( to your breathe for example, if you are doing a meditation concentrated on your breathing a few minutes a day), prefrontal cognitive control takes over. As in any workout, the more repetitions the stronger the muscle becomes. That is the mental gym. You can find more about emotional intelligence on the author”s blog (Daniel Goleman).