Every running regime requires intense scheduling and commitment that can cause anxiety. This goes without even mentioning the psycho-physical stress of working out itself. If you’ve committed to regular jogging, you’re walking a fine line between a stress-relieving and stress-causing activity. You’ll know when this happens.
How to Deal With Stress from Running
The idea of the upcoming jog fills you with dread and pain at the pit of your stomach instead of excitement and a sense of relief. The reconciliation of this negative emotion comes down to discerning the difference between emotions and attitudes about the activity. But that’s only the beginning of dealing with stress from running.
The first hurdle that most people need to overcome relates to the perceived uniqueness of the problem. It is an irrational but completely common and human state of mind that’s not easy to breakthrough. All it takes is reaching out.
Find consolation in the fact that many a runner has faced similar issues and that solutions abound – and they are in your hand’s reach in the age of the internet. Blogs, online communities and field-specific websites like Rockay have countless testimonials and articles that deal with runners’ stress-related details you didn’t even think about.
Now, a web browser is your tool number one, but always keep in mind that it can be a double-edged sword as it pertains to information. Keep your attention confined to reliable websites.
What’s the emotion-attitude relation?
Now, after you’ve broken through the barrier of acknowledging and looking for helpful tools, you need to understand the emotion-attitude relation mentioned in the introduction. The best way to understand it is via an example.
Emotionally, the very act of running is a wonderfully soothing experience. There’s almost a meditative quality to it as endorphin-infused positivity pumps through your veins. However, it is not how the activity makes you feel insomuch how you perceive it.
For example, do you feel bitter because you have to skip a friend’s birthday due to a rigorous running schedule? Do you feel bad because you have to sacrifice a commodity to purchase a pair of quality running sneakers?
If the answer to these questions is yes, it is completely a matter of your attitude towards running, and that’s what you need to change. This means that you’ll have to question your motivation: why are you doing this? Why are you running? Do you perceive it to be a waste of time and are you bored?
Remind yourself of all the benefits that you gain from running. Make a list of them: fortified musculature, agility, endurance, endorphins, serotonin, etc. Hang that list right next to the schedule as an important, ever-present reminder and a motivator.
Why is this important?
In one eye-opening study, it has been revealed that marathon runners suffer from less reactive immunity when they are chronically anxious. Naturally, this leads to some serious health-related consequences down the line.
Injuries are an important factor to consider. Are you prone to regular sprains? An added stressor to your body can create a sort of mental stress reflex whenever you’re forced to think about pending jog sessions.
It usually takes quite a while to recover from injury, and you’d be prudent to prioritize recovery over running results. Such a simple strategy may not feel wise at first, but it’s what makes a world of difference if you want to avoid embedding a stress-association with the activity due to chronic pain.
Running-related stress can ramp up if a race is pending. Marathons can put people in a particularly sour mood riddled with anxiety and episodes of real dread. And no wonder – it is an activity that requires full commitment in both physical and mental sense.
Even seasoned professionals get nervous now and then. The key is to develop a set of simple tools to deal with stress when such situations arise, and the good news is that it is a lot simpler than it might initially appear. All it takes is your willingness to look into a few tips and tricks to make your run-laden life a lot easier.
-By Runner Click
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