Stress on the Body
"The last four months have been wrought with stress so strong that I have been struggling both emotionally and physically. It has made everything from running to doing the dishes that much harder."
By the time you read this, I will be settling into my new townhome in Hawaii. I have an amazing opportunity to live here for a few years because of my husband’s job, but the process of getting here was far from how magical this place is. The last four months have been wrought with stress so strong that I have been struggling both emotionally and physically. It has made everything from running to doing the dishes that much harder.
I think that a lot of people know that stress impacts the body and how it functions. When you throw in triathlon training into the mix, it can be ugly. In the last few months, if you asked me to run two miles, I would get to one and feel like I’ve run ten at full speed. An hour on the bike? Only on the easiest gear. Swimming? Add about twenty to thirty seconds per hundred from what I was swimming when things were not as hard. Moving my body was hard and felt impossible. It has not been pretty and for this type-A personality, it has been incredibly frustrating to not be able to force my body to perform for me.
Stress had shut down my body from performing small tasks and exercising at all. It all felt too much to handle. It's difficult when the outlet you use to relieve stress also feels like a chore. What I’ve learned through the process of this mess is accepting where I am. Am I running a four-minute mile or prepared enough to do an Olympic triathlon? Absolutely not, but at the same time I needed to listen to my body and give it a break. I can’t force my body to do things it’s not ready to do. Am I happy about what I can accomplish right now? No, but I know that as I settle in that things will ease, and I’ll be able to start pushing again.
There have been so many hoops and wrenches thrown in my way during the process to get here and I could barely function. I have learned that it’s not worth pushing myself and potentially injuring my body or making myself sick so that I can’t do anything. Something is better than nothing and taking a hiatus and extra rest days are okay too. One thing at a time. Five minutes of a workout at a time. It will all come together piece by piece. For now, I am enjoying the elevation and the beautiful jungle and mountains I live by and that is enough.
Written By: Hilary Gorham, Tri Sirena Siren Luminary
Follow Hilary on Instagram @hilaryelisabeth
How do you cope with stressful situations? Let us know in the comments below!