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Why Stress Can Be a Fitness Killer

Stress is the ugly part of our life package deal with no opting out button. Some individuals manage stress in a healthy way without impacting the quality of life. On the other hand, it can become a chronic problem with negative physical and emotional side effects. Studies indicate stress can increase our risk of hypertension, heart disease, and weight gain.

Many of us live in a constant state of stress caused by our jobs, personal life, or financial strain for example. Sadly, it's becoming an acceptable and normal way of life. We walk around with shoulders to our ears, adrenal glands working over time, and our body suffering the consequences.

Stress breaks down the body by elevating our cortisol levels causing increased blood pressure and waistlines. If you're wondering why weight loss has been so difficult, you may want to evaluate your stress. It can adversely affect our fitness and health. In order to reduce stress, it' s important to implement healthy strategies to manage it for improved fitness. We will never be stress-free, but healthy stress management is shown to promote a fitter body.

How we manage our stress is essential to maintaining our health and fitness. Some people may eat poorly, give up on fitness and take on a bitter attitude during stressful situations. These unhealthy behaviors only make stress worse and our body will wear the evidence of our choices. Continued mismanagement of chronic stress eventually leads to illness and unhappiness.

We really need to let go of things out of our control, not sweat the small stuff, and definitely look into what is causing so much stress in our life.

"Life is 10% what happens to us and 90% how we respond to it."

I love this true statement and live this philosophy to reduce stress and maintain a fit and healthy life. Letting go of things out of our control is important for healthy boundaries and improving the quality of our life. Also, reviewing our priorities and eliminating things creating a 'too busy' life will make for a happier, healthier you.

Focus on those things about yourself that are fixable to reduce the stress in your life. We tend to put undue stress on ourselves from things that just don't matter. Who cares what others are thinking, saying or even doing that may be about you? We are not meant to live a life of self-induced stress and drama. Learning to let go and walk away from unimportant things will greatly improve the quality of your life. Learn from negative stress and turn it into positive growth to create a stronger, healthier person.

Workouts are a great way to manage increased levels of stress. Make it your sweat therapy hour for self-improvement and a healthy strategy to reduce stress. After an exercise session, you will feel better, able to put the stress behind you and ready to move on with a positive day.

Mindful eating is also important during times of stress. Too many people use stress as a reason to overindulge in comfort food to feel better. This is a pseudo fix making stress worse and our body paying the unhealthy price. Remember, taste you want for 5 minutes or health you desire for a lifetime.

What it comes down to is how we want to live. Do we want to live under a cloud of chronic stress and a life of unhealthy choices? I can't imagine any of us want that for ourselves. If we start focusing on stress reduction as a top fitness goal, we will all benefit from significant health improvement. Now, that's a plan!

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Be well and Stay Healthy



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