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View Full Version : what swimming does for me! - health benefits



sunruh
June 17th, 2013, 01:32 PM
one of the benefits i received after getting into masters after a 20 year retirement was meeting a new doc (not only does he swim he's placed at nats) and getting a solid understanding of my triglycerides and cholesterol.

with my current shoulder issue i've been unable to train at all. while i have cut back my diet some prevent becoming a balloon, i still love my Blue Bell ice cream.

however, even taking the best meds like Tricore 150 and Crestor, my blood work from last week showed that

*N O T H I N G* !!!

beats going 4k a day 6 days a week.

taking the meds exactly as i should (i cant even remember the last time i missed just 1 day) my levels are right back up to where they were.

my cholesterol is borderline bad. between 195 and 205.

my triglycerides are another story. always have been. think of a number that is high and well double that. or triple it.

but with swimming, i seem to burn it all off. both the cholesterol and the triglycerides.

with swimming my numbers are low. 150chol and 120tri

i have now direct proof that swimming is good for me! well, at least my blood and heart. i kinda seem to tear up other parts of my body as i train to race these other guys that arent as short as i am. :D

steve

ekw
June 17th, 2013, 01:58 PM
While I know there are physical health benefits, for me the biggest noticeable difference is in my mental health. I find that when I need a lift, swimming provides it and I'm usually able to muster up the energy to get to the pool, which wasn't the case with any other form of exercise. When I need to be calmed down, it lets me work out the excess energy. I think there is something about water in particular that does this for me. I think it's something tactile plus being submerged cuts out a lot of the noise of the world and somehow this translates to cutting out a lot of the metaphorical noise in my head.

Blue Bell ice cream is also good for my mental health. :D

The Fortress
June 17th, 2013, 04:11 PM
my cholesterol is borderline bad. between 195 and 205.



This isn't so bad if your HDL is high. My HDL was 79 at last check, and that elevates the total cholesterol when there is really no risk.

sunruh
June 17th, 2013, 04:37 PM
if thats the good one, then no. my good is like 39.

Bobinator
June 17th, 2013, 08:35 PM
**Try eating lots of high quality fruits, vegetables, quinoa, and fiber to lower the triglycerides. Avoid processed foods (basically anything with more than 3 ingredients), bad fats, and meat. I've always been under the assumption triglycerides were a result of lifestyle habits, food and exercise.

my triglycerides are another story. always have been. think of a number that is high and well double that. or triple it.

but with swimming, i seem to burn it all off. both the cholesterol and the triglycerides.

with swimming my numbers are low. 150chol and 120tri

i have now direct proof that swimming is good for me! well, at least my blood and heart. i kinda seem to tear up other parts of my body as i train to race these other guys that arent as short as i am. :D

steve[/QUOTE]

flystorms
June 17th, 2013, 08:47 PM
I'm with you ekw, swimming has absolutely boosted my mental health like no other sport. Swimming is what I did as a kid, whether it was in the ocean or pool. I broke my shoulder a few years ago training for a tri and fell into a quagmire after a lot of pain and weight gain. I had it worked on and slowly got better. It took me a while, but found exactly the right coach and team for me and haven't been happier. Yay!

couldbebetterfly
June 17th, 2013, 09:27 PM
This isn't so bad if your HDL is high. My HDL was 79 at last check, and that elevates the total cholesterol when there is really no risk.

Mines about there too. I just say, I don't have high cholesterol, just lots of cholesterol!

__steve__
June 17th, 2013, 09:29 PM
This is last years blood report:

Cholesterol - 175
HDL - 86
Triglycerides - 70
LDL - 75
Chol/HDLC ratio - 2.0
Non-HDL - 89

My Doc said it was good. I never eat fast food and my sugar consumption is very low. Raw vegetables and fruits 2 times a day (broccoli makes this convenient) unless we run out.

I do eat red meat several times a week and consume about 2 gallons of 2% milk a week (but I'm planning on tapering to 1% milk). My wine intake might be considered excessive to some.

I compared a few numbers to a ten year old report before I was a swimmer and they significantly improved since then, but so has my diet.

sunruh
June 19th, 2013, 09:37 AM
This is last years blood report:

Triglycerides - 70
LDL - 75


NOT FAIR!!!! just like when i stand next to PWB, Ande, Ross and ok ok everyone else!
tri's of 70....jeez do you know what 70 is for me? its a good number to put in front of the "x4" or "x5".
my genetic heritage says mine will be high. but that same heritage also says i'm going to be in the 95-99 age group
and possibly diving off the blocks as i race.
yes i drink milk as well. love it. both in liquid and frozen form!

__steve__
June 19th, 2013, 10:26 AM
diving off the blocks as i race.
believe me, the unfairness will disappear if I was on the other block

My blood numbers are mostly due to my diet (no sugar), I also go through the olive oil like a big-block Chevy with worn rings - the stuff is good

swimlong
June 20th, 2013, 12:39 AM
Swimming improves my mental health. On my fridge I've posted a reminder to myself: You're only a workout away from a better mood.

GenaG
June 20th, 2013, 11:22 AM
Swimming improves my mental health. On my fridge I've posted a reminder to myself: You're only a workout away from a better mood.

I may need that as a first tatoo. So right!

smontanaro
June 20th, 2013, 11:58 AM
You're only a workout away from a better mood.

Or a bike ride. :-)

Allen Stark
June 20th, 2013, 12:14 PM
Swimming is great for overall fitness and keeping those lab numbers in check.
As I have said before,exercise is the best natural antidepressant,anxiolytic,and stress reducer.If you have an exercise you love,you are more likely to do it regularly,and swimming is just wonderful!

Allen Stark
June 20th, 2013, 12:15 PM
Swimming is great for overall fitness and keeping those lab numbers in check.
As I have said before,exercise is the best natural antidepressant,anxiolytic,and stress reducer.If you have an exercise you love,you are more likely to do it regularly,and swimming is just wonderful!

Chris Stevenson
June 20th, 2013, 12:28 PM
Interesting that the last few posts have talked a little about mental well-being. My family has been dealing with some stressful situations for the past few months and while my sister has her regularly-scheduled therapy sessions, adding some long bike rides (as well as regular swim practices) has done a lot to help me cope. Swimming is great of course, but all the "good" pools here are indoor and there is something about being out in the sun, especially with pretty landscapes (and an elevated heart-rate), that is very healing.

ElaineK
June 21st, 2013, 06:38 PM
When I wake up in the morning, I do NOT feel 51; it's more like 71, because all my physical (mostly genetic) issues; the latest being herniated disks, bone spurs, scoliosis, and degenerative disk and joint disease in my neck. But, after a few hundred yards of swimming, I loosen up and I feel my age drop. By the end of a training session, I feel HALF my age! :bliss:

Some Forumites think swimming 6days/week is too much, but, for me, it's a necessity. And, on my day off? I'm cranky! :bitching:

Thankfully, in addition to the PT, the orthopedic surgeon I consulted with about my neck said, "Keep on swimming! Just keep on swimming!! He sounded like Dory in Finding Nemo... :D

Nichollsvi
June 23rd, 2013, 06:54 PM
Mental and physical health are much better with swimming. Then again, it helped to cause my malnutrition/5 day hospital stint/6 weeks on TPN because I was chasing the Olympic title against the men in a challenge our center had. LOL. Everybody deserves to do something crazy in their life. Hee hee. The thing is, I've found the mental and physical rewards overall to be so much better with swimming than without. My HDL (the good cholesterol) is higher than my weight. No joke ... but then again my diet to support what I do in the pool (and a few other things) is very different than the stuff I ate 2 years ago. I can zone out in the water, you can't hear, so I can do fitness runs and just think, pray, do whatever. I wouldn't trade it for the world. Then again, the smack we have against each other on our masters' group is something fun to live for. The banter can make it worth it too! I don't think our coach would agree though. LOL. Poor thing!