By Carlos D’Souza
According to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE), in 2017/18 over 595,000 people in the UK reported that work-related stress was making them ill. Everyone has a different threshold and tolerance to a stressful environment and stressful situations. Some workers may be better at managing stress than others but everyone has their limit; we are all made the same. According to the HSE, stress accounts for over 40% of all work-related illness, so it’s clearly a big issue for a lot of people. So, what can be done about it?
Stress is a part of everyday life – without a little stress we wouldn’t be motivated to get stuff done. But during times when our stress levels are on the way up, we need to find numerous ways to manage it, and several coping strategies can be deployed. Some ways that help people manage their stress is to talk with family on the phone, meet a friend for a coffee, watch a TV box set, or to get some more sleep.
Other maybe harmful ways to temporarily manage stress may include smoking, drinking alcohol and overeating, which will negatively affect your sleeping habits, mood and energy levels. This then becomes a vicious cycle, whereby you cannot get yourself out of rut, further adding to the stress your body is already under.
However, there is another way too!
One of the best ways to manage and even completely beat your stress into the ground, is to start up a fitness regime and focus on getting strong and conditioned.
Train Your Body and Your Mind Will Follow
Alexander Pope was an 18th Century English poet who once was quoted as saying “Strength of mind is exercise”. And this famous chap was right! Exercise can indeed help you to strengthen your mind. Yet, exercise is a physical stress on the body. So, I guess the question is, can physical stress help to alleviate mental stress?
Exercise is in fact one of the best ways to reduce stress. A good Personal Trainer can help you to work at the right intensity and for the right amount of time, so that you leave your session feeling energised and ready to take on another day at work.
When you exercise, your body releases endorphins (feel-good hormones that act as natural painkillers), helping you to fight stress. Working out with a Personal Trainer can help you to temporarily forget all of your problems and to focus on the physical tasks being set. Doing this will engage your brain in a different way, and as you work up a sweat in your fitness session, you will gradually be able to declutter your mind.
Exercise is really considered vital for maintaining mental fitness and reducing stress. Even a short 30-minute exercise session can help to reduce fatigue and improve alertness and concentration. The benefits of exercise on the mind are numerous. Circuit training and HIIT training are very popular methods of training the body, as well as boxing fitness too.
Why not ask your Personal Trainer if you can box with him?
Not literally of course, but many PT’s now offer this service to their clients. Whilst no-one wants to go in an actual ring and get seven bells knocked out of them, boxing fitness remains one the best ways to strip fat and de-stress. Hitting stuff in a controlled and disciplined way is an awesome way to work out your frustrations of the day. Having a physical outlet to release any negative energy (and even anger!) can greatly help to relieve your stress. A PT can incorporate this into your circuit training routine, making things fast, furious and fun along the way.
Healthy Body, Happy Mind
We all know that exercise is beneficial for both our body and our mind, but the problem is that people are often too stressed and overworked to fit it into their busy schedules. However, even just a little exercise can go a long way towards managing and alleviating some of your anxiety and enlisting the services of a knowledgeable and experienced Personal Trainer may be the answer for some. A healthier and fitter body will help to encourage a more productive, calm and positive mind. We are the sum of all our parts.
Stress is an inevitable part of life. But how much is too much? North London Personal Trainer, Carlos D’Souza, explains how channelling your pent-up work stress into exercise can re-set your mind.