Did you know you can beat stress, lift your mood, fight memory loss, sharpen your intellect, and function better than ever simply by elevating your heart rate and breaking a sweat? The evidence is incontrovertible: Aerobic exercise physically remodels our brains for peak performance.
In Spark, John J. Ratey, M.D., embarks upon a fascinating and entertaining journey through the mind-body connection, presenting startling research to prove that exercise is truly our best defense against everything from depression to ADD to addiction to aggression to menopause to Alzheimer's. Filled with amazing case studies (such as the revolutionary fitness program in Naperville, Illinois, which has put this school district of 19,000 kids first in the world of science test scores), Spark is the first book to explore comprehensively the connection between exercise and the brain. It will change forever the way you think about your morning run---or, for that matter, simply the way you think.
©2008 John J. Ratey; (P)2008 Gildan Media Corp
The information backed up with research and data.
Learning the positive effects to the brain from exercise. It's so necessary!
Very easy to listen to.
Yes & no - there's just so much data that I wanted to make sure I gave it time to sink in.
I will definitely be re-listening to this one!
Reiterates advantages of Aerobic exercise. From psychological to physical health, this book will motivate you to be more active and get off the couch. Great research data.
This book spells out the variety of positive effects that exercise has on a person's brain. Ratey explains how the human brain has evolved to benefit in many ways from physical activity, including mood regulation, anxiety moderation, higher ability to learn, even staving off mental deterioration. He then details how exercise has benefitted particular subgroups, such as those with ADHD or depression, pregnant women, and the elderly. Despite discussing some unfamiliar neurochemical names, the narrative remains very accessible to the layperson. I would highly recommend this to anyone who wants or needs a motivational boost to start an exercise/fitness program.
I listened to this while I ran, and boy, did it motivate me to keep going! I'm so converted, I left a copy for my parents and plan to pass it on to the school principal, too. Read this book to find out how real and how important the mind/body connection really is.
Really enjoyed listening to this and the benefits of exercise. I always use the notion that exercise increased the oxygen to the brain as a motivator to make time for it. It was really interesting to hear all the other positive things that exercise does for the brain. Really great for anyone that needs additional motivation to make time to exercise.
on a quest to read Audible's entire nonfiction science section...
In short, this book provides a wealth of evidence that exercise improves mental health as well as physical health. Those with depression, ADHD, epilepsy, arthritis and countless other maladies show remarkable improvement when they start exercising. Clearly, many of the ails of American citizens and the greater society are the result of our sedentary lifestyles. No surprise there but you will be overwhelmed by the mountains of scientific evidence to this effect.
Unfortunately, at least in audiobook format, the writing is not compelling enough to keep me from constantly getting distracted. I adore good science writing but this is one I barely made it through. It's unfortunate because the science here could be presented in a way that inspires folks to get off their duffs and do something active--anything!
I found "Born to Run," which is less scientifically oriented, far more effective in this regard so give a look at that title.
Struck with mental illness in my mid-twenties, I gained 60 pounds in 9 months, in part due to the side affect of weight gain associated with the anti-psychotic medicine. Now over a decade later I was fed up with being unfit and lacking motivation to do something about it, let alone make a lifestyle change; I--therefore--decided to educate myself on exercise. I turned to audible.com hoping to find a book that would both educate and motivate me to make change--Spark fit the bill and then some. It educated me on the powerful connection between exercise and the brain. Most importantly the power of exercise in healing the brain, especially from the perspective of being mentally ill. When I purchased it, I did it with the intention of listening to it while I began running, hoping to create a new habit. It took me a month or so to read with sporadic exercise, but I can gladly report that running has now become a new part of my daily regimen. Thanks for the terrific book that has helped instill exercise as a new lifestyle change; resulting in more energy, less sleep, increased confidence, and greater mental stability.
Clear and concise evidence how exercise affects the brain that results in lowered depressive and anxiety symptoms, without the professional jargon.
How exercise sparks brain growth/developement.
It's one of the few books that has drastically changed my life. I bought this book thinking it would make an interesting read and it instead turned me into a running machine! I went from zero exercise in the past 10 years of my life to running 2-4 miles a day, 6 days a week. The information in this book is powerful and true. I've never felt better. Thank you John J. Ratley!
If you don't exercise, you NEED to buy this book. Stop thinking about it or hesitating. You won't regret it. Thank me later.
Not happy about hearing how they test things on lab animals. For such an advanced age we live in, it is disturbing that humans are still so thoughtless and cruel to animals. No need of it in this day and age and yet it still happens. I don't like to hear about how they sew one eye shut on cats and other cruelty no matter how interesting the rest of the book is. Major turn off.
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