About One Rep At A Time

One Rep At A Time is Cult.fit's own podcast, with 50 episodes already out.

Our vision is clear; we want to make health easy for people through a medium available worldwide. Whether you're in Bangalore, Japan or Antarctica - you can learn ways to improve your health with impactful steps to reach your health goals. Today, we are bombarded with new information - "eat this, not that", which can be overwhelming for those who want to improve their health. We're here to bust myths and share what you need on various topics, from hormones and nutrition to the right workouts to help you get started and support you on your journey.

About this episode

Working out makes us feel better - so it's obvious there is a connection between mental and physical health. The WHO goes a step further by saying there's no health without mental health.

And yes - we all need to be more aware of mental health. So in this episode, we bring in an expert - cultfit's therapy lead, Shama Shah. We speak about a lot of aspects - the physical-mental health connect, yes, but also - various kinds of mental health issues, how exercise affects your mental health, how to have better conversations with yourself, and so on. You'll find this a very therapeutic conversation!

Here's the complete transcript, in case you're more of a reader than a listener :)

Deepak 0:07 

Hello and welcome to One Rep At A Time, your friendly fitness podcast from Cultfit. Each week, we get deep into one aspect of health. We speak to experts on physical fitness, nutrition, stress and sleep, often speaking to trainers, doctors, athletes, entrepreneurs, all to help you become a healthier and happier version of yourself. My name is Deepak Gopala Krishnan; the internet calls me Chuck. I'm going through my own fitness journey and I'm perpetually curious, putting me in the right position to host the show for you. Let's get cracking with today's episode.


Deepak 0:41 

You feel good after a workout, right? You probably guessed it by now there is a mind-body connection. And you can extend that if you see someone who is fit, it's likely that they're going to be in a good place mentally as well. It's also likely somebody who doesn't take care of themselves physically might not be doing all that well mentally. Research has shown that those who have mental health issues might also be suffering from fully preventable, underlying physical health issues. It's worth quoting the World Health Organisation here. They define health as a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity. And I quote "There is no health without mental health". It's clear that there are two Health's that work in tandem and while we have spoken at length about mental health before on the show, we are yet to go deep into that change. Now, I'm delighted to speak to Dr. Shama Shah, who is the therapy lead at Cult. We are going to speak about a lot of aspects of the physical-mental health connect that I spoke about a while back, but also about the various kinds of mental health issues. How exercise affects your mental health? And lots of other aspects like conversations to have with yourself and so on.


Deepak 1:58 

Dr. Shama, welcome to One Rep At A Time. Shama specializes in several kinds of therapy, couple anxiety, LGBTQI concerns, relationship issues, parenting concerns, body image issues, work life, stress, personality disorders, and more. She's worked on individual couple and group therapy. She's our REBT certified, which is Rational Emotive Behavior Therapy from the renowned Albert Ellis Institute in New York. She's also certified as a cure affirmative counselor by the Mariwala Health Initiative. So before we get there, just like we always like to do with guests on the show, we like to know a little bit more about you.


Deepak 2:30 

So tell us Shama, how did things lead to where you are today, what your relationship with fitness has been the whole journey, basically?

Dr. Shama Shah 2:37 

Sure, I think it's been an interesting sort of decade, you know, being at it in terms of keeping up with mental health challenges dealing with them, etc. And I think over a period of time also to sort of live in a time where fitness is really highlighted, sort of and always possible, especially, of course, physical. It's been an interesting journey. I feel it's a great time to be a sort of, you know, practicing therapist for mental health awareness is gradually getting better. Physical awareness, fitness is, you know, already in great shape. So yeah, I think it's a good time to be here.


Deepak 3:10 

Totally attest to that. I think myself, and a lot of my friends have benefited from just a simple conversation with a counselor, if nothing else, and you're right, it's an absolutely interesting time, I'm sure as a practitioner, to be in this space as well. So let me take off from there.


Deepak 3:26 

So as a practitioner, one of course, I think you will agree that mental health in India in general is overlooked. As a practitioner, what's your take on this? And how do you really see things going ahead in the next few years? And I speak knowing that there's an audience for whom mental health remains an alien concept, let alone inaccessible.


Dr. Shama Shah 3:48 

Yeah, that's quite true. I think if I had to sort of look at it from a category perspective, I think there are two categories largely at this point where you have one set of population, which is highly ignorant, or very stigmatized when it comes to any conversation around mental health, be it for themselves be for people they love, be it for people around them at work, neighbors, etc.


Deepak 4:08 



Dr. Shama Shah 4:09 

But we also very, you know, interestingly, and in an encouraging way, have a set of population that is so open to having conversations around mental health. And, you know, seeking help, and not just again for themselves, but sort of also encouraging other people to seek help. So we're sort of in that in-between space where we have a lot of people who've gone on to the extreme of being very vocal about it. And then there are people who keep it very hush secretive, and sort of just missing in action entirely.


Deepak 4:38 

Yeah, that's right. And we should also give a hat tip to some celebrities who have been brave enough to come out in the open and I think that really just spreads the conversation awareness. And I think that does a lot of good, especially for the masses who may not have so much access to say, Western media and things like that where this is a lot more normal or a lot more regular in some sense.


Deepak 5:01 

Sticking to the basics, what are the different kinds of mental health or mental health issues?


Dr. Shama Shah 5:07 

Yeah, sure. I mean, it's a great question to start with, because again, sort of loosely put, if you look at it from broad categories that exist. You have the clinical conditions out there which need a formal diagnosis followed up with medication, formal treatment, which is where we have terms like depression, schizophrenia, eating disorders, anxiety. But you know, sort of clinical apart, you also have a lot of regular ongoing mental health challenges, which could be a lot of times personality based, by virtue of who you are, and how you've always lived and thought you could experience certain challenges. You can also have issues as adjustment issues, which I think. I honestly think we have a lot of evidence of this category in the past two years, when we were all thrown into a space that we know nothing about.


Deepak 5:53 



Dr. Shama Shah 5:53 

And we had to live in ways that were very innovative, creative, creative on the go, right. So a lot of challenges. People can also stem from having to adjust to external conditions. And while sometimes you also have systemic issues in the country that you live in, in the culture that you're living in, that can also create challenges for you sometimes.


Deepak 6:12 

Could you help us look at the other side of things in terms of the various kinds of practitioners? So there are various terms that I have come across. There are therapists, there is counselor, there is psychiatrist, so when do you speak to anyone who's listening over here, who's just, you know where do I get started? I think just that would be


Dr. Shama Shah 6:22 

Yeah, absolutely. I think this is probably a space where there's a lot of confusion for most people. So therefore, I think it is a very valid space to talk about. But first things first, a physiatrist is a medical health professional, a person who holds an MBBS degree followed by a specialization in psychiatry.


Deepak 6:48 



Dr. Shama Shah 6:48 

And they are the ones that are legally allowed to give you medication. So it's a doctor that prescribes medication by their understanding of what your condition might be. Again, you may be diagnosed, you may not be diagnosed, but sometimes medication can just be a great support for you to move on from where you're stuck.


Deepak 7:05 



Dr. Shama Shah 7:07 

That being aside, now if you look at just the other aspects that are clubbed together, you have therapist, counselor, psychotherapist, just different words shrink if you know in this land and well. But all of these people sort of in India very fairly, and honestly, we don't really go by a lot of, you know, very literal categories, because sort of people double up in their roles. But a therapist is someone that looks at deeper issues, at more serious concerns, at concerns that could be, you know, clinically challenging while counselors generally are trained more for adjustment related aspects and issues. But like I said, in practice in India, it's a very mixed bag. So a counselor or a therapist is a professional you would go to for therapy, which is a long-term process, which is multiple sessions over a period of time, and does not involve medication, because they're not legally allowed to prescribe medication.


Deepak 8:02 



Dr. Shama Shah 8:02 

You know, and they largely basically help you overcome the challenges you're experiencing through conversations and changes of habit.

Deepak 8:08 

So does a therapist/counselor, since we're using those terms interchangeably. Can you visit the same one for couple’s therapy and group therapy? Or are there different kinds of counselors for treating each of these as well?


 Dr. Shama Shah 8:22 

So you would not really have different kinds of counselors, but you'd have different kinds of specialization. So mostly, most therapists will put out their specialization areas along with wherever they're listing themselves. And if they are trained to help couples and family, then great can go ahead because most people that do couples and family work by default also do individual work.


Deepak 8:42 



Dr. Shama Shah 8:43 

But that may not hold true for people doing individual work. So it's always good to just do a little bit of a check in terms of credentials and training, and then go ahead.


Deepak 8:50 

Perfect. And before we get into the aspect of physical health over here, there's something that I have noticed after going for therapy for some time is just that it just feels like speaking to somebody and who is a neutral party who is not, you know, related to you, or is your best friend, or something like just getting it off your chest in some way seems. Just that it's alone seems therapeutic enough.


Deepak 9:13 

Is my reading into this correct or is there something deeper?


Dr. Shama Shah 9:16 

No, I think that's quite correct, because there's a lot of relief and value that also comes in from expression and venting. But the reason that again, the one thing that you highlighted, the reason why it's also therefore optimal to do it in the therapeutic space is because of the safety of that space.


Deepak 9:33 



Dr. Shama Shah 9:33 

As well as the non judge mentality. I think it's not just steaming it out but also steaming it out in a space where you know you're not being judged actively for what you've just said and done.


Deepak 9:42 

Correct, Yeah.


Deepak 9:42 

Now I'd like to get into the main topic that I want to chat with you, Shama, which is the connection between mental and physical health. Physiologically speaking, how are the two connected?


Dr. Shama Shah 9:55 

If we start with the basics first, the first and foremost changes or rewards people experience is, you know, you feel a relief from the pain that you're feeling any sort of stiffness, pain, tightness. Of course, from something that simple to a deeper, you know, benefit in terms of regulated blood pressure, regulated heart rate, regulated sugar levels, because there is a bodily mechanism that's very, very active when you're working out, right. So there is a release of the feel good hormones, the famous endorphins that I feel now everyone really knows about quite well. But also the flip side to that or the sorry, the flip function to that is that active exercising also reduces the stress hormone, which is cortisol. So you're not just producing feel good stuff, but you're also actively reducing the damaging stuff. Right. And that is where a lot of benefits can come in from. But if you're also looking at other benefits, in terms of, sort of expanding them into the mental health element, a lot of physical functioning tends to get affected with mental health challenges. So appetite, your sleep, your ability to focus and concentrate, the kind of sense that you have about yourself in terms of confidence and self-esteem, which is, again, the way you carry yourself physically, you'll see an impact across all of these aspects as well.


Deepak 11:08 

That's well said. And I think the simple thing that you said was to increase endorphins and reduce cortisol.


Deepak 11:13 

The next question I have, Shama is, what is the sort of mental output that people should be seeking? And let me try and explain what I have vaguely in my head over here.


Dr. Shama Shah 11:23 



Deepak 11:23 

Okay, so some people might just feel super happy. And it sets a great tone for the rest of the day, right when they exercise. Others might like the validation, perhaps on social media, the dopamine hits that come. Like, for example, I'm a cyclist, and I have often employed this in my head. And now I'm not ashamed to admit it in public. So when I'm at 75 kilometers, and I really want to push myself to get to triple figures, right? As you like, yeah, as you really get to 100, you can finally post on Strava, and all that. I believe in identifying these mental outputs because I believe each of these are going to be very specific to each individual and what drives you. Some people might not be very comfortable putting up a sweaty selfie on Instagram, for instance. Right?


Deepak 12:03 

So one, is my theory of having these personalized mental outputs sort of right? And two, How can people be more conscious of them?


Dr. Shama Shah 12:13 

I think these are honestly the day-to-day goals that keep us going, right? So I may think of you know, me working out as a means of my mental health keeping better and physical health keeping better. But let's face it, those are very vague goals to work after. On a day-to-day basis, I'm not really constantly checking in with my health status. What I'm really focused on is how good I felt you know, how tight My body feels after doing the workout, or you know that sweatiness and the glow that comes on your skin after that, if you actually look at the smaller things, those are what really help you come back to it on a daily basis.


Deepak 12:46 



Dr. Shama Shah 12:47 

And which is why if you're able to identify these micro rewards, as I'd like to call it, it would work wonderfully well for your consistency as well.


Deepak 12:55 



Dr. Shama Shah 12:55 

So and again, what you've identified is again, so accurate, that it's very subjective. You know, the way a person looks after a workout may work for some people, but the way they feel may work for some other people. You know, being able to eat a certain dish in a night, because they've done the right workout, could also be another way of, you know, experiencing a sense of reward. So there may be a whole range of what works for each of us. But if you're actually able to be mindful, and then utilize that to our benefit, then it's almost like you first identify, you know, how I need to know where I need to go for my Google Maps to take me to the right direction. It's sort of like that. So if I already know what I'm looking for? And how I need to feel? and then I backtrack, and come back into the workout to start feeling that way. That's just a great process for me to keep going back to.

Deepak 13:41 

Yeah, I think that the whole point of identifying the goal is in the scheme to be the reward, etc, might be a good way of going about it. So any advice you would have for people to identify what their micro reward could be?


Dr. Shama Shah 13:54 

Um, I think it really starts with you experimenting. You know, you're just sort of being again. I think I keep going back to the word mindfulness here. But if you're just more attuned to how you're feeling, and what is it that you're feeling the best about? Are you feeling good about people having noticed you were doing something very particular and difficult? Are you feeling great about a trainer or a coach having appreciated you? Are you feeling good about having out on your own, you know, measurements from yesterday? What is it that you're feeling good about? What is it that you're taking back as something to be happy about? And if that mindfulness sort of keeps getting better with your experiments is where you can start picking up on your rewards and maybe just play around. You don't have to really go for everyone every single day, but you play around.


Deepak 14:37 

Yeah, absolutely. And I just actually wanted to mention that the two themes that have been recurring on this show ever since we started and ever since I've been speaking to professionals and experts from various fields are exactly the two things that you mentioned, which is experimenting and being mindful. You really can't have one without the other and you said, you know, it's not possible for us to measure how we feel day to day, from a mental health perspective. And to me that it's kind of interesting because we live in the golden age of body analytics in some sense, where you have various devices that are telling you how much glucose you have, or how much (unclear) you have, and COVID has fast tracked a lot of development. I'm just very curious.


Deepak 15:19 

Is there any scope for something like that to happen from a mental health perspective? Or is that kind of thinking extremely far-fetched?


Dr. Shama Shah 15:27 

I mean, a part of me is already thinking that we may honestly not be very far from that reality for mental health as well. Because I think we're living in a very data-driven time. But having said that, because a lot of times your emotions, your experiences, from a mental health perspective, may not necessarily be quantifiable in a standardized manner,


Deepak 15:47 

Right, exactly.

Dr. Shama Shah 15:48 

is where you know, there's a little bit of a shift where it may not be a machine telling me automatically but you know, there are a lot of spaces available, a lot of apps available, where you keep a log on a daily basis on a regular basis. And with that app and that software, does the analysis work for you? Right.


Deepak 16:04 


Dr. Shama Shah 16:04 

So they give you a heads up and say, hey, it seems you've been low for a while, why don't you seek therapy, or it seems you're doing great and you know, you're at the best of your sort of experience and emotional disappointment, the most of it. So you can still have something that can become an anchor point for you for feedback. But nonetheless, I see humans the way we are, if we were to take away all the devices and data. I don't know if we really can be mindful every second. And also, because I do honestly feel that's very exhausting. So, if I'm constantly aware of what I'm feeling and thinking, I don't know how much I can engage in other things.


Deepak 16:41 

Yeah, we're just getting one step away from being extremely philosophical on this particular show right now. So there might be times when people are not in a good mood, or you know, they just don't feel happy when they leave the gym, they may have had a bad workout, or they don't achieve the goals that they wanted to, you know, for whatever reason, any advice for these guys?


Dr. Shama Shah 17:02 

I think again, I would still start with a similar approach in terms of a little bit better mindfulness, in terms of what's leading to that experience. Were you actually at the gym at the wrong time on the wrong day? You know, sometimes some of us tend to get a little extreme in terms of, I have to do it at any cost, where my body might not be fully in sync with what I'm trying to do, or my mind is not fully in sync. And a lot of times, if you're just a little better in terms of predicting the good hours of working out, or the good times, you know when not to work out, when to take a break, can help us avoid and prevent the experience altogether. So you first consider ways in which this can be prevented, once that is done, and you still end up with an experience where it doesn't feel that great for whatever reason. Again, just to sort of, you know, break it down. I think humans find a lot of mental benefits in being able to name the problem. The more something is vague, the more something is, you know, like, you're not sure what's going on the bigger impact and control it seems to have over you. But if I were to name it and say, Okay, today is because I fell short by a certain, you know, a set of a certain number of threats. So today is because there was a comparison in my mind with a co-working out person today because the trainer reacted a certain way. Whatever it is, if I'm able to name it, then I'm also able to think of what I can do about it.


Deepak 18:23 

Yeah, I think that's well said. So whenever I used to work out, you know, obviously do the multitasking thing that we all do in the 21st century and listen to something like music or a podcast or something like that. And it worked well for a while. But I have noticed of late that, you know when I tune all that out and actually just focus on being mindful of something as simple as what muscle groups are being worked on for this particular workout? Am I overthinking this? or Is this actually what you mean with respect to mindfulness and all that?


Dr. Shama Shah 18:52 

This is actually in a way, like a great example to, you know, illustrate what mindfulness would look like. Because I think again, just to sort of pause and bring in mindfulness as a conversation is to highlight that it isn't really just about meditating, because I do feel there's a little bit of that misunderstanding out there to be mindful is to meditate. But we're saying absolutely no, you could be walking on, build on bare feet and, you know, mindfully exercise how it feels to walk in the garden. You could be on the treadmill, you could be mindful, you could be coloring, doodling, be mindful, you could be talking to someone having you know, tea or coffee, anything that you're doing with full attention and by fully being present in that moment is mindfulness, Right?


Deepak 19:33 



Dr. Shama Shah 19:33 

So which is also why a lot of times, while working out, people do prefer to have auditory inputs. I think that works great for some people in terms of the tempo, the rhythm, but also at the same time, it shouldn't just become an escape where you're, you know, mechanically just going through stuff because you need to go through it.


Deepak 19:50 

Yeah, yeah.


Dr. Shama Shah 19:50 

Connecting with your body right when it's exercising and right when it's really pushing itself. Also, it does great in terms of, you know, giving you feedback on what's working well for you or not.


 Deepak 20:01 

I think that's great. And as I get older and hopefully wiser, this aspect of mindfulness is just seeping into so many other things. I mean, in this day and age, we're just trying to do too much in too little time. While we are eating, we are also watching, while we are reading we are also doing this, while we are working we are listening to music. So, to me, it seems that we are doing nothing justice. So you know you are neither appreciating the food nor appreciating the work that somebody's done in putting that movie or whatever it is together, just feels like doing little but doing each of these more mindfully, seems to sort of be a good way of just, you know, appreciating life and getting more out of each really.


Dr. Shama Shah 20:41 

No, but I mean honestly, if you take it back to the question you asked in terms of you know, sometimes you feel bad after certain sessions? I would think this is also strongly connected to that problem.


Deepak 20:51 

Yeah, this is true. Yeah.


Dr. Shama Shah 20:51 

Because of just sort of being trying to do too much and, you know, be spread thin. Because I've seen people come to the gym with, you know, their work meetings on their phones because they just need to listen in, and they don't really need to participate, but they need to be a part of it. They can't, you know, avoid it. They also want to squeeze in the workout because, oh, there's no time. You may just, you know, come out feeling very bad about the whole thing altogether.


Deepak 21:13 

Yeah, yeah. The soul hustle culture is really not a good thing overall.


Deepak 21:18 

Can good mental health lead to good physical health?


Dr. Shama Shah 21:22 

I mean, yes, also, because from a technical perspective, like I said, mental health impacts a lot of your core physical functioning. Sleep, appetite, focus, the extent of emotions that you experience, whether they're negative, they're positive, the intensity of the experience, your ability to socialize, your ability to be present physically, your exhaustion levels, all of this in a real-time, physical world experience will get impacted with your mental health challenges as well. So if mental health has been taken care of, it sorts of also creates a better baseline for your physical health to start from. And then, of course, the other aspects like you added, you're just in a better space to work out, you're in a better space to be consistent with your habits. And then it's like a, I mean, I like to use this word in the positive vicious cycle, it's still vicious. Because it's quite intensive, it will not let you off the hook. But it's very positive for you. It's helpful for you.


Deepak 22:12 

Yeah, I think the technical term for a positive vicious circle is it's an (unclear), at least that's what they say in the industry.


Deepak 22:19 

So, working out, when you're in a bad state of mind, what are the pros and cons of doing this?


Dr. Shama Shah 22:25 

See, on the top of my mind, and in a more face-value manner, it will definitely help because I mean, we just started out with a conversation on endorphins, and how there's going to be a physical impact on you know, the feel-good experience coming in. So chances of you feeling good, or maybe feeling less bad, are actually quite high. The cons, however, depending on, of course, subjective practices and approaches, but if you're too intense with your workout, if you get too aggressive on yourself, you may just you know result in some injuries, it may actually worsen the mood for you. Or it may just induce a sense of failure where men really existed, to begin with. So it can fight back as well.


Deepak 23:05 

A few final questions. So many times when we're working out, our trainers tell us that it's all in our mind, to have conversations with ourselves, and so on. So, again, another slightly philosophical question, then is How do you have better conversations with yourself about any pointers, to begin with?

Dr. Shama Shah 23:22 

Sure, I mean, this could definitely be something I can talk about for more than an hour. But to sort of keep it precise, also, for the context here, I think the one magical space to work with is what we call self-talk, which is essential, in the simplest of ways, the dialogues you have with yourself, the way you talk to yourself. We all have an ongoing parallel inner voice. You know, you could be doing anything, and you could still be a sort of talking to yourself on the side, whether it's about observing other people, observing yourself, the more compassion driven your self-talk is, the more rewarding and the more positive and beneficial it's going to be. The more comparison-driven it's going to be, and the comparison doesn't always have to be with external people and situations, it can sometimes just be with your own expectations.


Deepak 24:06 



Dr. Shama Shah 24:08 

You know, so I expected to sort of have an hour-long cycling session today, but I really just have 30 minutes, or should I do it or not? No, but I could have had, you know, another hour. I should have planned better. I should have done that. And it's so easy to get caught up with the What If? Thinking or it's so easy to get caught up with a very punitive, almost cruel way of talking to yourself.


Deepak 24:27 



Dr. Shama Shah 24:28 

Right. So if there was more compassion brought into that, if there was better acceptance, and you know, a lot of times in therapy, just to sort of bring in a quick nugget here is when people struggle with compassion for themselves, we asked them to engage in a very simple exercise. Is this how you would talk to a five-year-old child? And if this is not what you would say to a five-year-old child, you technically shouldn't be saying it to yourself either. So, let's start with how you would talk to a child and use that to talk to yourself.

Deepak 24:55 

Wonderful. This is a famous concept on Reddit called Explain it like I'm 5. I'm not sure if you've heard of it. It's called ELI5. But this is very interesting and I think that's a great place to start the whole, you know, having conversations with yourself. It's almost like you're encouraging people to be their own best friend and their fiercest critic in some way, but not from a punitive point of view. Like you mentioned more from a constructive criticism point of view. Yeah, so I think that's great advice to take away.


Deepak 25:22 

Finally, Shama as someone who has one foot in physical fitness and one foot in mental fitness, what are some of the other things that we have discussed today, and, or might have left out as well, that you think, are worth a complete discussion by themselves?


Dr. Shama Shah 25:39 

Actually, I think two things stand out for me from our conversation so far. One is to talk about motivation because I do feel it continues to be a misunderstood concept. And I think a lot of us wait to get motivated to do the stuff, while it generally works the other way around. And the other thing, again, that you highlighted earlier, which I feel people often bring that in, in therapy, and in most cases, is I want the best. You know, which is the best phone to buy? Which is the best gym to work out at? Which is the best headphone to use? Which is the best therapist to consult? Just if you sort of, you know, get away from these binary ways of thought, and begin to look at what is going to work best for me right now. I can imagine that doing wonders for your mental and physical health.


Deepak 26:22 

Yeah, I think that is so well put. And I mean, this is a small way of me having inculcated what you just said. So I'm big into music. And for a lot of time, I used to say, Oh, this is the best song by The Beatles, or this is the best 10 songs by Led Zeppelin, or something like that. And then, as again, I grew older and hopefully wiser, I'm realizing Hey, my best might not be somebody else's best. So recently I have taken to calling these my favorites rather than necessarily an objective list of the best. So I think it's kind of like what you're saying right now. Right? So, the best gym for somebody might not be, quote-unquote, the best gym for somebody else. So I think it's a great way of thinking about what works for you. I think that's really what we're working towards. Great. So that's three potential topics for us to explore with you later, Shama. So, thank you so much for that. And thank you so much for this conversation. This has actually been an insight-packed episode. And as there is any conversation that I end up having with my counselor, I'm feeling great at the end of it. So thank you so much for coming on and sharing your thoughts, wisdom, and experience with us.

Dr. Shama Shah 27:24 

Sure. Thank you, Deepak. Also, the great questions help you talk better. So thank you for the right questions.


Deepak 27:30 

Thank you. Thanks so much.


Deepak 27:35 

I hope you enjoyed my chat with Shama. It was a different topic from what we have covered, but one that we felt was very important to do. A few takeaways, as always, before we end today's episode. One, mental health is important. You cannot have physical health without it. So prioritize it. Speaking to a therapist is now easier than ever before. There is more access, many of them are happy to operate remotely. And even Cult has several options. Even if everything is going great in your life, just speaking to a therapist can really help. Two, exercise releases the feel-good hormone, which is endorphins and also reduces the stress hormone cortisol. So that's sort of like a double whammy every time you work out. And finally, identify micro rewards. This was a very interesting piece of advice that Shama gave. Now, this could be anything that motivates you. Is it the sweet reward that you get out of working out? Is it showing off on Instagram after you complete a long run and share your run? Is it the post-workout glow that you feel? Whatever it is, it varies for each of us. Identify these micro rewards and optimize your life for them. You can consult Shama on Cultfit. I'll provide the link in the notes for this episode. And hey, I'd implore you to check out all the mental health offerings Cult Fit has apart from therapy, this COVID-specific stress, sleep disorders, thriving at work building better relationships, and a lot more. And for some super fun group classes, the best gym workouts and a home workout experience like no other, download the Cult Fit app today and become the healthiest version of yourself. I've been a user for many years and I love working out with Cult. This is your host Deepak Gopala Krishnan, aka Chuck, signing off. Thank you for listening to One Rep At A Time by Cultfit.


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Oct 11, 2022
Healthy Mind

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