diet sabotage
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January 2, 2017

How to let the stress not get to you

There are two types of stress that most people face. One is the positive stress known as eustress, a rush of excitement and fun that we experience, for example, when cycling downhill, feeling the wind on your face or the sense of urgency when we know there’s a deadline drawing near and we can beat it. The other is chronic stress which has negative effects on our health, especially if we are stressed over a long period.

What happens when we are under stress? How does our body react? It senses a perceived threat or danger so a fight-or-flight response is triggered. Cortisol, the stress hormone, is released into the bloodstream and our body system is geared to the fight-or-flight situation. We experience a burst of energy and strength to enable us to fight or to run away. It’s your mind not someone else’s so let’s look deeper into how best to let the stress not get to you.

stress detrimental health

However, neither response is really relevant to our situation today as the stress we face is often at the workplace or along the road stuck in a massive traffic jam. We can’t run away or fight in the office nor can we move in a traffic jam even though the minutes tick by and we will be late for the important meeting.

Neither does our body relax and slow down, which it should since there is no direct physical threat to us, so that our body functions can return to normal state. The high levels of cortisone remaining in the bloodstream over a prolonged period can damage our body.

Chronic stress can be debilitating

Chronic stress can lead to an impaired immune system and many health problems, some of which are heart disease, type two diabetes, depression, obesity, sexual dysfunction, etc. and they are life-threatening diseases.

Sleep is also affected and eating habits become unhealthy leading to weight gain and increased abdominal fat which can lead to strokes and heart disease.

Our metabolic rate slows down because of the high levels of cortisol and this also leads to weight gain. We crave for nutrient-empty but calorie-laden food such as cakes, sweets, salty chips and crisps, sweet drinks all of which make us grow fat and the fat is deposited in our abdominal area putting us at greater health risks. All these make it difficult for us to lose weight if we are on a weight loss program.

chronic stress debilitating

Emotions can cloud your judgement

Being stressed leads to emotional eating. We look for our comfort food, food that makes us feel better and which we consume in great quantities, even though we don’t feel hungry. Doing this helps to distract us from our feelings of anxiety, depression, fear or anger and it makes us feel good so we continue to eat the food that will make us put on weight. Comfort food is generally sweet and has high calories, such as cakes, chocolates, sweets, etc.

Thus it would be beneficial to recognize that stress can lead to weight gain if we are not careful. We ought to look for ways to de-stress instead of reaching for comfort food. Prolonged stress is bad and can lead to serious health problems apart from weight gain. It also kills off our plans to lose weight.

Does your job keep you away from home for long periods of time? Do you find that you have no time to stick to your fitness regime on a regular basis? Is your working life keeping you busy with meetings, meetings and more meetings with no time to spare for yourself? Well you have come to the right place because we will give you a selection of fitness tips and small work out routines that you can do whilst on the move.

do not tie emotion to food

Now beware that some of our tips might be better suited to some individuals than other so its advised that you find a routine that you can do and feel comfortable with. You may need a couple of fitness props for some of the routines as well!

Fitness is one way you can fight back

Now when you are on the move for business meetings, with the likelihood of being away from home for quite a long period of time, then pack with fitness in mind. Some of the essentials you will need to be able to work-out include trainers, fitness clothing (swimsuit, joggers and t-shirt), and finally, a compact music system of some sort to keep you entertained!

jogging to work

Excuses are no excuse

If it’s possible to do, then why not walk or bike it work? Especially now that we are in the summer months, it’s the perfect time of the year to get your bike out and glow this summer! If you take the bus to work then why not get off a few stops early and walk?

How about doing the same on the way home as well? At the same time, whilst you’re waiting for the bus you can do a couple of butt crunches for a more toned and slimmer bum.

biking burns calories cuts stress

Bring your running shoes to work

Most of us just sit at our desks during the lunch hour and munch. But you’re sat at your desk all day as it is without doing that at lunch so why not go for a walk round the block?

Related: Making those healthier food choices on the go

A Couple of gentle stretches will also go a long way. You can even create a “lunch walking community” where a few of you can dedicate your lunch hours to a quick walk or run round the block. However, make sure you bring a spare pair of trainers so that you don’t ruin those lovely smart heels!

walking during lunch break

Remember to take a deep breath and take the time to realize that you are in control. You are however only human and we make mistakes, there’s nothing to be ashamed of.

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