Stress is inevitable for most people, and while it’s impossible to eliminate it completely, it is possible to manage it effectively so it doesn’t control your life.
In a , 75% of the Australians surveyed said that stress was adversely impacting their physical health, and 64% said it was impacting their mental health.
Stress also costs the Australian business sector . This is due to workplace absences, loss of productivity, and more.
While stress can sometimes feel overwhelming, it’s a normal emotion that can be managed with some smart techniques. And sport is one of the best ways to destress. Here’s why:
There’s a reason why the rush we feel with endorphins is known as “runner’s high.” And you don’t need to be a long-distance runner to get this feeling. Not only does sport release these mood-boosting hormones, but you’ll enjoy them for 90-120 minutes after you’ve finished playing.
Got a lot going on in your life? Participating in sports (particularly a group sport) is a good way to draw your focus away from the things that are stressing you out. Thinking about something else and being present in the moment is almost like meditating, allowing you some relief from the worries going through your head.
There’s a reason why so many of us are sprawling on the couch after a long day at work. Over time, stress uses up our precious energy, making us feel fatigued. Exercise gives us some of that energy back and can heighten our stress tolerance.
While it can seem like an effort to go and play a sport when you’re tired, you’ll be rewarded with much more energy after the game, so you can tackle the things that need to be done.
When playing a team sport, you’ll also have plenty of time to socialise. And for most people, this is a huge part of an effective stress-management plan.
Socialisation has also been found to go hand-in-hand with , which is also known as the “love hormone.” This promotes a feeling of well-being, reduces stress, and helps us feel more confident in our coping abilities.
Playing a sport has been linked to greater feelings of self-esteem. And there’s little doubt that we all feel good when we manage to steal the ball or score a goal. Interestingly, our level of self-esteem can also influence our ability to cope with stressful situations.
who were about to take a school exam found that the kids with higher self-esteem were less likely to get upset when responding to stress.
It happens to all of us- we get busy with work and other commitments, and before we know it we’re huffing and puffing every time we have to take the stairs.
Many people believe that if they want to get back into shape they need to spend hours on the cardio machines at the gym. If you’re the type who loathes the treadmill or cross-trainer, it’s time to accept that 60 minutes of cardio four times a week probably isn’t going to get you back in shape.
Sure, that first week you’ll feel like a champ. But life is hard enough without adding in activities you dislike, and within a month you’ll be skipping your cardio sessions.
Look on the bright side- if you’ve tried to get in shape before and fell off the wagon, at least you know that that method doesn’t work for you.
Here are some ways you can get back into shape while still enjoying the foods and activities you love.
If you’re hoping to get back into shape, strength training is one of the best ways to rev up your metabolism, burn calories, and tone your muscles. And strength training isn’t just about looking good- the stronger you are, the easier life is. Carrying groceries and kids, or lifting heavy items around the house is much easier when you’re used to lifting.
Strength training can , , and . You’re also likely to see results in a short amount of time, which keeps you motivated (and more likely to keep going).
If you’re new to strength training, ask a personal trainer to give you an introduction to some of the best exercises (think squats, deadlifts, bench presses, pullups etc). They can check your form and teach you how to use some of the machines before you lift solo.
Keyword: Fun. Anyone who says they enjoy slogging it out on the cross-trainer for an hour is a dirty liar. Instead, incorporate your cardio with something you find fun, and you won’t even notice you’re getting fit and healthy- you’ll be too busy enjoying yourself.
Of course, there are plenty of other options for fun cardio as well. Join a running club, play some basketball, or even try trampolining.
That’s right, if you want to get back into shape, you’ll need to take control of your diet. 80% of your results come from the food you’re putting in your mouth. That doesn’t mean that you need to live on kale and tofu though (unless that sounds delicious to you).
At Kikoff, we know our success is due to our amazing coaches like Perry Moustakas. And we’d love for you to get to know them better.
Today’s interview is with Perry Moustakas. Perry is one of the most qualified coaches around, and his experience as a pro footballer makes him a role model for football lovers of all ages.