Posted by SLS on November 27, 2009, at 4:07:34
In reply to Re: I'm an exercise skeptic, posted by mtdewcmu on November 26, 2009, at 23:15:33
I think that this is another case of needing to acknowledge the interindividual differences that exist in the presentations of what we are all calling "depression". I never tried performing vigorous aerobic exercise every day for 3-4 weeks. I have lifted tons of weight, though. My exercise schedule comprised 4 times a week with alternating muscle groups. I did this for years without gleaning any benefit for my depression. There was a time when I did take brisk walks of 5 miles every day. Again, no help.
I think one needs to respect the potential for depression to render one nearly motionless with paralyzing psychomotor retardation and suffocating anergia. To intimate that a person with such a presentation can exercise if they were only to try hard enough can insinuate that they perhaps are somehow inferior and simply do not want to do what might be necessary to get well. Of course performing exercise is generally a good thing. But that doesn't mean that everyone is capable of it. Fortunately, there are other ways of treating depression. Exercise is not a necessary component of most treatment regimes. Actually, there are a few doctors who believe that intense anaerobic resistance exercise like weight-lifting can make someone feel worse instead of better - something about depleting brain amines. I don't know if I agree with this, though.