For the past week I was in Vail, Colorado skiing with my children, wife and her family. It was beautiful weather. It was sunny and warm. We are teaching my children to ski. Well more like my wife and her parents and the ski instructors are teaching my children to ski. I have been snowboarding for the past 10 years. While out west I decided that I wanted to try a new challenge and wanted to pick up telemark skiing. It is a form of down hill skiing where your heel is free and you almost have to lunge in order to turn. It is very physical, but it was a lot of fun, and very challenging.Down hill skiing is usually not associated with being pain free. You do have to be in decent shape to downhill ski, because you are on your feet all day using your balancing muscles. I usually prefer to snowshoe or cross country ski because there is less of a chance to hurt myself, and I get a much better cardio-vascular workout, and I get to get off of the ski resorts and see some beautiful scenery. My wife and I did a 6 mile snowshoe hike while in vail. 6 miles isn’t that much, but in the first 3 miles we did almost 2000 feet of climbing. NOw that was tough while being between 9 to 10,000 feet above sea level. If i hurt myself, being a chiropractor, I would be out of work for a month or two. But, with my children learning how to ski now and my wife’s family skiing, I want to keep up with downhill so we can all do it together. And I know that within a few years my 5 and 3 year olds will be racing down the hills and i’ll be trying to keep up with them (which I can’t wait for!). So when I do downhill ski or snowboard I have nothing to prove, and like to take my time and not take chances that can lead to hurting myself.So what does all this have to do with health and being pain free? When you try a new activity, it stimulates you brain to establish new neurological pathways to fascilitate the new activity, and to allow you to be able to keep on doing it, and hopefully, be able to do it better and better as time goes on. The more you do something, the more you practice it, the more established those neurological pathways will be.By establishing new neurological pathways, it will cause your brain to release human growth hormone (HGH)and other beneficial hormones that aid in the developement of those pathways. When these beneficial hormones are released in the brain, they will affect your entire body. Many people these days are espousing the benefits of human growth hormone to keep you feeling and looking younger and to help you to maintain muscle mass and strength. Sylvester Stallone was found with a suitcase full of growth hormone while travelling to Italy. He takes it because he wants to look and feel as young as possible, and to maintain as much muscle mass as possible. In my opinion, it is much easier on your body to stimulate the release of endogenous human growth hormone (human growth hormone that is produced by your body) than it is to add exogenous, or extra/ artificial, human growth hormone to your body. I feel that the more exogenous growth hormone you take into your body, the less your body will produce on its’ own over time. Thus causing you to age quicker and loose muscle mass unless you keep taking in the artificial (and very expensive) growth hormone. Not to mention that the use of artificial human growth hormone is relatively new and so therefore no one knows all of the side effects of using it, short-term or long-term.As we age we produce less and less human growth hormone. But we still produce some at night while we sleep. So try a new activity, it will stimulate your brain, cause your body to release more natural growth hormone, therefore keeping you looking and feeling younger. And it’s fun.