As an avid believer in the healing and growing properties of exercise for our body and mind, I feel that it is imperative to exercise on a regular basis. However, when times of high stress enter our lives we may need to temporarily re-adjust our exercise program to allow the body to recuperate. When we overdue anything, the results may backfire on us and may even be harmful. This includes exercise. If we push ourselves too much and burn the proverbial candle at both ends, we will not see the benefits of our exercise and may even become more tired and stressed because of it. Pushing to the point of exhaustion is not healthy, nor is it effective for physical or mental growth. The body will slowly start shutting down if you do not give it the necessary breaks it needs. Listen to your body. When you feel tired, get some extra sleep.
When you feel anxious, quiet your mind and be still. Here are some things that you can do when stress starts getting the best of you… Go for a short, brisk walk outside to allow time to clear your head during a stressful day. Go for a short swim and allow the body to feel weightless during this time. If physical exercise is not possible, then take time to settle and quiet the mind. You may want to sit quietly and dismiss your thoughts in a dark room away from cell phones or computers etc. An overworked brain can be just as tiring as a sprint across a long bridge. Skipping a workout in order to catch up with some quiet time may be just the workout your mind needs in order to re-group for the next day. You shouldn’t feel guilty for missing a day at the gym or an appointment with your trainer. In fact, a break from exercise is necessary every so often to help avoid plateaus and allow the body to heal itself and build up strength. So, go ahead and take a day off (or two) and enjoy a little quiet time for yourself. Your body will appreciate it.
In Health & Happiness,
Christie Piontkowski, CPT