We all get stressed out.
We do…it’s a fact of life. Right now my left eye is twitching, hence the blog post. I assume it’s stress, I’m not sure.
Stress is actually a physiological response to anything out of the ordinary or anything that potentially affects ‘homeostasis’ or the body’s ‘happy place’.
For example, if you are on your way to work, late, and the traffic is bad. Your body doesn’t know what traffic is, it just knows that something is wrong and all of the lovely hormones that make you agitated and irritable start surging through your body.
These hormones exist as a protective mechanism to help you escape from danger. The thing is, traffic, your boss wrecking your head, bills and somebody calling you names, are not threats on your life. Your body doesn’t know this…it responds by releasing adrenalin and cortisol, amongst others, in order to help you run away from these stressors.
Modern life is full of these stressors, but they aren’t endangering your life. They are evolutionary reactions to stress from back in the day which may have included a bear chasing you or an angry, chimp-like adversary trying to kill you because you had food and they didn’t.
Chronic stress and the accompanying hormones are bad for you, both physically and mentally. But you don’t have to let it get the best of you. By battling stress in your day-to-day routine, you can stop pulling your hair out, if you have any, and get back to living a more relaxed life.
How can you turn your stress-filled life on its head?
With one of the best weapons against stress: exercise. (excuse the shameless plug)
Training works. When stress is getting to you, you need something remove it. You need something that makes you feel good. And every time you exercise, you increase your body’s production of endorphins.
In case you were out that day in science class, endorphins are responsible for those good moods you get in after exerting yourself or the euphoria you feel while inhaling chocolate. This is the reason people eat crap when they are stressed, these ‘happy hormones’ help to counteract the irritable effects of the stress hormones mentioned above.
However, before you grab a heap of chocolate and skip the gym, remember the end result of each and choose which one will help you battle stress in the long run. (Hint: It’s not the chocolate.)
Now that you know exercise reduces stress, you may be wondering what type of exercise will be most likely to keep you from banging your head against the wall and what works best?
Whatever you enjoy doing.
That’s right – any and all exercise you perform helps you fend off the effects of stress. So whether you enjoy jogging, lifting weights, practicing ballet, swimming, yoga, or boxing, simply getting involved in your exercise of choice is sure to help reduce your stress.
If you don’t know what type of exercise is for you, experiment.
But wait… For a lot of people, the gym is literally the epitome of a stressful situation. If you haven’t trained, lifted weights, jogged, boxed or performed yoga before, these practices are the absolute worst thing you could do. I.e. Imagine trying to teach yourself boxing…or ballet?
Thats why getting a coach, personal trainer or attending a class that actually removes the stressful aspect of it is essential.
If you don’t, you are going to add more stressors to your life and you are back at square one.
Give us a call. Remove the guesswork and stress from the situation and hire an experienced professional to help you get over the inevitable stressful aspect of starting an exercise regime. That’s what we’re here for.
You won’t regret it.
Bryan Kavanagh BSc. CSCS
Bachelor of Science, Sport Science & Health (hons)
NSCA, Certified Personal Trainer
NSCA, Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist.
ITEC, Level 3 Sports Massage Therapist