Stress vs. workout
There is no better way to deal with stress than a good energizing workout. Instead of letting yourself drown deep in your worries you decided to banish all misery out of your head by running a good mile or pumping iron ferociously. But what if frustration and anxiety can fight back? How does stress affect our physical state and effectiveness of our workouts?
1. Lack of determination.
Just a little bit of pressure and most of us throw our hands up already. “It is too much for me right now”, our brain thinks, and off we go, procrastinating on a sofa, watching TV or playing videogames. Stress usually causes sedative effect and up to 75% of people fall to that feeling, deciding to ditch their training entirely rather than spend ten or fifteen minutes on a small but effective effort. But the thing is, even those 15 minutes of good sport could lift up our mood tremendously!
2. Your wells are dry.
It`s hard to stay sharp if you always feel like whole life has been sucked out of you. Worrying thoughts lead to insomnia, muscle fatigue, migraines, and it`s no brainer why it is so hard for you to find the strengths and motivation to go to gym.
3. Poor performance.
Stress often involves adrenaline rush, and while some may think that it`s good thing for physical performance, remember it`s called “rush” for a reason. Yes, your heart is pumping fast, oxygen flows through your body like a stream and it seems that you feel no pain or strain… yet.
It`s a short term effect and the aftermath is usually gruesome. Muscles tend to tense up, your hands are shaking and a fatigue is overwhelming. Actually it can be quite dangerous to workout in gym in such state – you can easily lose your grip on heavy things and your legs can tie up in a knot on a treadmill. Better to take a timeout, lie down and make a series of deep breaths.
4. Slow recovery.
Cortisol, the hormone that is activated during stress, is your enemy. Not only it`s responsible for that ever elusive fat in your abdominal area, it also affects your recovery. Your energy can`t keep up with your speed and tissues are not fully repairing themselves. There is no good out of “all in” training approach. Don`t stress your body more than your brain is. Go home and recover or adjust your training routine to a more forgiving level just for that time.
5. Gaining weight.
You wonder why you keep up gaining fat even if you push yourself to the limits? And that will only be one more reason for stress, so kind of a never-ending loop if you remember what we were saying about the cortisol storing fat. Our brain thinks if we are in trouble, we better start packing up fat for “black days”, and you will crave for junk-food with too much fat or sugar. Don`t fall for that trap. Start your morning with the most full protein breakfast and you will be safe from the tricks of your stressed mind.