Life stress: the after effect of responding to demand after demand as we go about our normal lives. It starts as soon as we are awake and conscious enough to read our WhatsAp or email messages asking us to respond or do something that day. It builds as we navigate the school run, commute, attend meetings, contend with supermarket car parks, busy roads, difficult colleagues, never ending demands for money, meals to prepare, houses to tidy, clothes to put away I could go on.
These situations (stressors) on top of lack of sleep, poor nutrition or under eating for weight loss simply activate our fight or flight response. Meaning our nervous system is working hard to help us deal with the demands. And then we add training. Let me be clear. Movement and physical activity isn’t training per se. When I say training, I’m referring to structured activity that is working towards a goal such as a race. In order to ‘train’ we have to ‘over-reach’ in order to get physiological adaptations that we need in order to be faster, fitter, stronger. This process induces stress. So despite thinking you’re managing stress by exercising. You are effectively adding stress to stress. End result? Illness and/or injury in about 2-6 months time, at which point you will just attribute to being “unlucky”. You’re not. You just didn’t train sensibly. So what do you do?
Firstly, Lower stress caused by life (using lifestyle interventions). Secondly, Adapt training to allow for less intense sessions especially on a stressful day/wk.
Don’t do this objectively go get the hrv4training App (www.hrv4training.com) and monitor stress for yourself.