How I Combined Meditation and Exercise to Reduce Stress

Why combine physical activity and meditation? Well, for one thing it saves me time. Usually I would meditate and then exercise. Now, I do both at the same time. While working out on my elliptical, the idea came to me. Since then I’ve been combining both. I was listening to Lord of the Dance RiverDance, which is one of my favorite pieces of music for my workout. You need to convert some of your favorite YouTube videos to MP3 files.

I have enclosed a few links of YouTube videos for your workout/meditation at the end of this post.

Elliptical Workout Source: bvretreat
Good for Managing Stress

In addition to saving me time, I get to manage my stress. Those surges of adrenaline that are a result of nerve agitating mental experiences such as work frustrations, confrontations with other people, and time pressure. These surges of adrenaline cause your heart to pump harder, tense your muscles, and put you in an anxious state of mind.

While this is happening, adrenaline opposes the action of insulin on the liver. Whereas insulin transports glucose out of your blood and into your liver, adrenaline moves glucose in the opposite direction: out of your liver and into your blood. That’s fine if the adrenaline surge is followed by vigorous action, as nature intended.

Your muscles use the extra glucose for energy. But if you’re just sitting at your desk getting agitated, all this does is raise your blood sugar. If you eat starch or sugar during an adrenaline surge, your blood sugar will rise even higher than normal.

Chronic stress causes increases in blood sugar, inflammation, and insulin resistance in your body. As you can see, stress has a direct effect on your blood sugar. What better way to reduce stress than meditation.

Falun Dafa second exercise standing meditation. By: Longtrekhome
Exercise Is Good for You
The solution for insulin resistance, the only real solution, is exercise. Muscular activity turns the vicious cycle of insulin resistance into an effective cycle. It restores insulin sensitivity, which lowers insulin levels, which promotes weight loss, which further increases insulin sensitivity. We need to remember, though, that insulin resistance is half the problem. It alone won’t make you fat and diabetic. Only when insulin resistance is combined with a diet high in refined carbohydrates does it become a problem.

Let’s go back to Lord of the Dance RiverDance. What I like about the music is its pace. It starts slow to allow me to warmup. Then the rhythm increases which is just great for my workout and meditation. During the first few minutes the slow pace allows me to take my deep breaths as I usually do when I start meditating.

Throughout the RiverDance performance, the music varies in speed which is also good for me as I like to slow down right after an intense part. I close my eyes, listen to the music, quiet my mind, and focus on my exercise and breathing.

My workout/meditation runs for about 30 min. when you feel that you had it, start slowing down and prepare for a wrap up that will last about 5-10 min to cool down. Do this when walking or using any other exercise machine. Drink water before and after a routine.

I’m still experimenting with this. I have tried changing music during my workout. Sometimes it works. Sometimes I discover yet another way of doing things. Try your favorite music, but explore another type of music that feels good to you. Let me know how it is for you. As I promised, here are a few pieces of music I use.

Strauss-The Best of Marches
Journey to Nepal
Recopalacion de Pasodobles Festeros


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