Although most people run to de-stress, running can sometimes be a stressor. If this is something you’re dealing with, here are a few ways to overcome the problem.
You may be stressed out by running if you have trouble meeting your goals. Perhaps you aren’t running as fast or as far as you would like, even with consistent training, or maybe you haven’t been able to meet the physical or fitness goals that you set out for yourself. Regardless, these setbacks can demotivate you and cause anxiety before or after your runs.
You need to create a more positive attitude about your running. To start, focus on what you have achieved so far rather than what you have yet to attain. If you have kept a record of your timing or distance, go through them and congratulate yourself on how much you have improved.
You should also think about creating better goals for yourself. Aim for an objective that you can get excited about. For instance, if you’re having trouble covering a 10K run, perhaps you can train for a 5K or 8K run that ties in with a charity organization?
You may not be covering as much distance as you would like, but you’re supporting a worthy cause. You will be surprised by how much this can help change your attitude towards running.
You may also be stressed out because your running is causing you physical discomfort. It isn’t unusual to get aches and pains after a run. This only becomes an issue when you attempt to brush it off or don’t address the cause. After a while, you may begin to associate running with discomfort, which will naturally affect your mood.
The first thing you need to do is to acknowledge your pain and figure out what’s causing it. Is it poor form? Are you not letting your body rest enough in between runs? Do you need to spend more time warming up or cooling down? If you follow this train of thought, you will be able to prevent injuries or discomfort in the future.
Like any runner, you may have days – or even weeks – where you just don’t want to get moving. The thought of running may seem downright unappealing to you. When you force yourself to run anyway, you could end up hating it.
The only way to get out of this rut is to bring the fun component back into running. In some instances, all you need is a change of scenery. Picking a more challenging route may do the trick. If you find that you get bored, partner up with a friend. If you need motivation, download an app that can track your run and show you how you have performed compared to others.
Did you know that your cortisol level – the level of the stress hormone – is at its highest at around 7AM? If you go for a long, strenuous run at this time, you could be increasing this level in your body even further.
On the other hand, your cortisol levels can also skyrocket due to stressors. This could be due to a tough day at work, studying for exams, and more. As such, it is a good idea to figure out what time of the day you will be at your calmest. Then, schedule your runs during these periods.
You can also tackle stress by taking the right supplements. For instance, porcine glandular is an adrenal builder that helps to support the structure and function of adrenal and endocrine glands. In doing so, it allows your body to have a more positive reaction to stress. As a result, you will be less likely to experience various side effects of stress.
Maintaining a healthy diet and avoiding processed foods, as well as limiting your alcohol intake, can work wonders. As such, you may want to consider giving your diet an overhaul as well.
These are the best ways you can deal with running-related stress. If you make it a point to address these points, you will be able to reduce the risk of any negative emotions related to running.