We’ve all heard or seen the ads making claims like, “Download our scientific app and play our brain games! They’ll improve your memory and actually improve your brain power over time.” I’d often thought about downloading one of those apps and trying it out. Wouldn’t hurt right? Wrong. It would hurt your pocketbook, but wouldn’t help your brain at all, according to Johns Hopkins Professor of Neuroscience David Linden. What would help is exercise, he tells Terry Gross, of NPR’s “Fresh Air”.
I’ve hated running for ever. I first tried running for exercise by the shore of the Indian Ocean when I was fourteen. Didn’t get very far. Did get a bad case of shin splints. Over the next couple of decades I tried again a few times, but never really got into it. Every time I tried the result was the same: it was painful, frustrating, and just not fun. I tried focusing on mechanics, but it was making running just that: mechanical.