Sunday, April 3, 2016

Know When to Hold 'em - Stress

So the last 4 weeks have been super stressful for me with my husband moving 750 miles away to start a new job which left my kids and I here to finish school and sell our home. In my "spare" time, I also had to keep down the fort at my full time job, work my half time job, get our new mortgage approval, do my normal volunteer activities, and run my household alone.  Little much?

That meant something had to give. You just cannot do all the things.

Stress should dictate your training strategies.

I had been on a little cut down since the start of the year before this whole change up last month. And I had to bump my calories back to maintenance. I could just not deal with being in a deficit and all the stress.

To help with the stress, and because it fits into my day stress-free, I did keep up my workouts. I generally lift 5 days a week and continued 20 minute cardio sessions on the air bike 6-7 days a week.  Again, if my training had caused more stress, I would have backed that down.

So let's talk stress. Anything that causes anxiety, fear, excitement, or heightened emotion is stress on your body. All the following things cause stress on your body:

  • work
  • lack of sleep
  • lack of time
  • family relationship strain
  • friendship relationship strain
  • co-worker relationship strain
  • financial strain
  • change in routine
  • being in a caloric deficit
  • illness
  • workouts
  • traumatic events

Most fitness competitors and models have low stress lives. They often do not have jobs outside of fitness and modeling either. That is because of the stress it takes to get and stay that lean in regard to diet and training. You cannot do it all.

So my point is this- it is okay to pull back on training or nutrition when your life dictates it. That does not mean you are a failure. It is normal and is better than running your body into the ground.

My priority is always health for the long haul, I intend to keep up with my kids and husband as long as possible. That means balance. I am not pretending to be super woman. Neither should you.