Activities to Support Stress Management

Activities to Support Stress Management

It’s inevitable.......we all experience stress – we can’t avoid it! And making things even worse is all the attention the “negative effects” of stress gets! We hear ALL about the bad things stress does to our body – which can make us stress even MORE! But it’s how we manage it that makes all the difference. So let’s explore some of the things you might try to help you manage stress and things you might consider if you are suffering from occasional stress.

First, exercise is one of the most talked about stress relivers we hear about. Go for a walk. Go to the gym. Run. Hike. Yoga. All can be considered exercises supporting stress management. So what does “exercise” do physiologically to help with managing stress?

The Mayo Clinic reports there is a connection between exercise and stress relief and notes some benefits you might see with just a little exercise.

(Remember to always consult with your Health Care Provider before starting any new exercise program)

  1. Increases your sense of well-being
  2. May increase your levels of endorphins (your feel good neurotransmitters)
  3. May improve your mood
  4. May improve your sleep

Harvard Health Publishing also notes that not only does aerobic exercise increase endorphin levels but also reduces the levels of your stress hormones like adrenaline and cortisol. They also note that exercise not only supports stress management but can also lead to reducing the risk of many health issues as well as slowing the aging process.

So let’s get started! One of the easiest ways to begin an exercise routine is to just START! And start slowly. If you’re not physically active starting with walking might be the way to go. Remember to always check with your health care provider before starting any exercise program.

Harvard Health Publishing recommends walking 2 miles every day. Well, if you’re not used to physical activity this may seem like a daunting task. But don’t get discouraged. Start slowly. Walk around the block....then two blocks......then three blocks, and so on. Pretty soon you’ll be at that 2 miles! We often hear about monitoring your “steps” each day and to strive for maybe 10,000 steps per day.

Mayo Clinic reports that the average American walks between 3,000 and 4,000 steps per day, which would be between 1.5 and 2 miles. You might consider getting a step “tracker” to see what your average daily steps are currently and then gradually increase that number by 1,000 steps every couple weeks. Did you know it’s National Walk Day April 6th? Celebrate with a walk in the park!

As you increase your activity also consider increasing your protein consumption so you can provide those muscles with the nutrients needed to maintain. A great option is the Biochem Whey Protein Isolate. With a complete amino acid profile, soy free, 99% lactose free, gluten free and easy to digest this would be a great way to fuel your body’s recovery.

Should you be following a vegan lifestyle, the Biochem Vegan Protein offers the most delicious easy to mix vegan protein you can find. With organic pea, organic hemp and cranberry protein you can get a complete amino acid profile plus omega 3-6-9 and polyphenols to take you to your #NextLevelLiving!

Perhaps you are already exercising, taking a protein supplement, but still have trouble managing your stress. Other options you might consider adding to your routine when things get more stressful than usual might be yoga, swimming, meditation, or deep breathing exercises. There are people who say “I’ve tried meditation, but I just can’t do it”, or “Yoga just isn’t my thing” – and that’s OK. You see, it’s about what works for YOU!! Not what works for someone else. Technology has given us so many options with different apps, internet sites, Instagram, Facebook, etc. where we can search for ideas and information. Take your time, try different coping mechanisms, and do what you feel most comfortable with that can give you that “break” from stress.

No matter what activity you add to your routine, when stress starts building up, do what works best for you to get yourself back in balance. Stress will always be around – but remember it’s how you manage it that will determine if you will move to your own #NextLevelLiving.

Enjoy the process!

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