1st February 2015 - Instructional

Stress Less Part 2

Hopefully you took some time consider the points in the last article and have started to become more aware of the levels of stress in your life. If you find that your stress levels are high and haven’t found the motivation to implement any of the suggested strategies, read on as I will uncover what will be happening to your body! As I touched on in the last article, our body will react to any kind of stress and the vast majority of the time it is in a negative way. The body has an inbuilt coping mechanism, which is the adrenal glands. When you rely on the adrenal glands constantly you can start to have symptoms of adrenal fatigue and if this is not dealt with, major health issues can develop! So what are the signs of adrenal fatigue? • Unable to lose weight • Storing fat around the waist • Lack of energy • Hypoglycemia • Palpitations • Dry skin • Can’t deal with pressure • Feeling depressed • Reduced sex drive • Reduced self esteem and motivation for no apparent reason • Increased symptoms of PMS for women • Headaches, neck and back pain • Relying on stimulants for energy The list could go on and on and I think what this list shows is that physically, emotionally and mentally you get depleted. This is why I stated in vol. 1 that if you are feeling the affects of stress you have to be careful that you don’t throw yourself into intense training to combat this. When your body is in such a broken down state you will not be able to deal with the physical stress of INTENSE exercise and will only push further into fatigue. Now I have highlighted the word intense as some forms of exercise can be great for helping deal with this. Check out the last article for some suggestions on what types of exercise to do and what recovery strategies to use. Along with incorporating some recovery strategies it is vital that you fuel your body well. When your adrenal glands respond to stress your cell metabolism speeds up, burning many times the number of nutrients normally needed. With adrenal fatigue, the cells have used up much of the body’s stored nutrients, which means you are lacking in vital nutrients. Good quality food is essential for replenishing these nutrients. This has a huge impact on blood sugar levels also, which is why hypoglycemia and diabetes can be common problems that occur from adrenal fatigue. Also when blood sugar levels are messed up it makes it very difficult to lose or maintain a healthy weight. Again this makes it vital to get good quality foods in on a regular basis to maintain good blood sugar. Here are a list of nutritional elements to consider to help replenish and maintain good blood sugar levels: • Avoid fruit and cereals in the morning • Limit starchy foods such as bread, pasta, potatoes, cereal etc. • Increase protein, especially through nuts, seeds, beans, legumes, green leafy plants • Eat small amounts of protein regularly • Limit coffee, sugar, sweets, alcohol to a minimum or completely if possible • Use a variety of brightly coloured vegetables as your main source of carbohydrates • Eat small amounts regular (every 2 hours) Once you have started getting your stress under control through resting more, implementing recovery strategies, gentle exercise and some of the diet suggestions you have to start addressing where the stress is coming from. A lot of the time you can get stress under control if you tackle the people or factors that bring it into our lives but the majority of the time you can create your own stress. If you constantly put yourself under pressure to achieve, compare yourself to others, unhappy with image or appearance or let negative thoughts spiral this can build unnecessary stress! So be good to yourself and build your training up consistently and gradually to achieve long lasting health! Regards Craig

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