Stress can play a huge part in why you aren't reaching your health and fitness goals. It has potential to sabotage your workouts, affect your eating habits and overall badly affect our mental health.
Here's some things it can cause:
- Stress and anxiety can stunt our performce, decreasing our coorindation, motivation, energy levels and motor control
- It slows down recovery, if you're already drained and run down, adding additional fatigue can be damaging and cause injuries
- Depending on the person it can mess with our appetite. Either making us crave more food and over eat or lose our appetite altogether. The stress hormone, cortisol, releases higher amounts of insulin and this can cause sugar cravings, that are much higher than normal. Alternatively, cortisol and other stress hormones can slow down digestion and decrease our appetite, which then lowers our energy levels. Both are going to negatively affect our fitness goals
- When cortisol is released it can trigger storage of more fat cells
When we embark on a fitness journey, it's vital to work on all areas of our health to maximise the benefit and results. One thing to look at and try to manage before anything else is stress, and fortunately fitness and good nutrition will help with this.
Here's some ways to manage stress:
- Take control! Figure out what is causing it. If it's controllable, then make a change, if it's not then we find a way to help manage it
- Be active! Get outside to hit your steps, do your favourite workouts and hobbies
- Try yoga and / or meditation
- Online detox! When life get overwhelming sometimes social media and the news can make it worse, try having an afternoon or weekend off
- Eat well! It's proven that good and nutritious food helps us feel better, more energise and aids our immune system
- Self care! Spa days, long baths or just a nap can be briliant short term fixes for stress
- Talk! A problem shared is a problem halved. Talk to your friends and family or even a counsellor and let people know whats going on