How stress affects the body | Empower Fitness Lab Houston, TX 77057

How stress affects the body?

This week I would like to talk about stress and how it affect the body.

When people hear stress, they think about an individual hunched over, sweating, and in a frantic state but stress has many faces. Some of the most successful people in our society are stressors and you would never know it. First, we must change our perception of stress and how it looks.

Stress is a part of life and it affects our body in many ways but it’s not the stress that harms us. The problem is that we don’t give ourselves an opportunity to recover from the stress.

Example, you had a very rough day at work and then you go on a long run. Now even though the run is something that you do to relax it’s still stressing the body.

There have been cases were very fit people had heart attacks working out or running.

There are multiple articles and research that give both sides of the argument with stress but my goal is to provide you with the best methods of dealing with the stress.

  • Stress is known to cause your cortisol levels to rise and that’s counterproductive to an active and healthy lifestyle.

I myself was under a lot of stress and didn’t even realize it. I’m not one to be sad or look frantic but I’m extremely competitive.

So, when something needed to be done I wouldn’t stop until I finished it. In most cases, I forget to eat during that time frame (stressing the body), not getting enough sleep (still stressing the body) and being a parent (kids are just stressful).

I went had a stress test done and realized I needed to make some changes.

Oddly enough, I did the stress test because I wasn’t losing any body fat and I was eating very clean and working out 4-5 days a week

Once I made a few changes in how I handled the stress I lost 3lbs of body fat the first week (everyone results will be different).

With anything that I do, I like to research and find out as much information as possible. I use the Harvard Health website and these techniques that I found could be beneficial to anyone and can be employed in most surroundings.

1. Pick a focus word, short phrase, or a pair of words. Some people use a prayer or words from a prayer.

2. Find a place where you won’t be disturbed and sit quietly in a comfortable position. Some meditators adopt the cross-legged “lotus” position, but it isn’t necessary.

3. Close your eyes. Take a minute to relax your muscles, starting with your feet and moving up to your calves, thighs, abdomen, shoulders, head and neck.

4. Breathe slowly and naturally. As you do, say your focus word, sound, phrase, or prayer silently to yourself as you exhale. You may also use pairs of words on both the inhalation and exhalation.

5. Assume a passive and nonjudgmental attitude toward your thoughts. When random thoughts intrude—as they most certainly will—acknowledge them silently and return your focus to your breathing.

6. Continue for 10 to 20 minutes. You may open your eyes to check the time, but don’t use an alarm.

7. Do not stand immediately when you are done. Continue sitting quietly for a minute or so, allowing other thoughts to return. Then open your eyes and sit for another minute before rising.

8. Practice the technique once or twice daily. Good times to do so are before breakfast or dinner.

For further reading, here is the Harvard article the 8 steps were taken from.

You can quit or you can fight through it”, Lay the foundation, build on it, and ignite your greatness”

 Are you ready to get a handle on your stress? Great!  We’re ready to help you.  Go ahead and schedule a time to come in and talk to one of us or give us a call.



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