Posts Tagged ‘stress relief’

Running Away… From Stress

I have a large family. Four brothers and a sister. Both of my parents passed away quite some time ago, and with everything we’ve been through, we (my four brothers, sister and I) have stayed very close. In fact, my sister is my very dearest friend and we talk on the phone two or three times a day. She lives in Virginia. I’m in New York, close to two of my brothers. My other brothers are in North Carolina and Florida.

One of my brothers was having a crisis last night/this morning and sent a text message that had the rest of us scrambling to reach him and reach each other at 5:30 am. When we finally did reach him, everything was fine, but the whole situation left me kind of stressed out. I live in a pretty constant state of stress anyway with things currently going on in my life; this pushed it to the edge.

By the time everything was cleared up it was 6:30, which is late for me to exercise in the morning. Still, I threw on my sneakers and went for a 2.5-mile run, and a pretty hard run (for me) at that. Running was not on my schedule for today, but I needed to escape for a few minutes and the running let me do that. I also knew by running this morning, I’d be able to better handle anything else that might crop up later. Lately, there always seems to be something. While running, I tried to picture all the stressy things slipping away from my body behind me and by the time I got home, I felt better.

In the past, I never would have gone the exercise route to push off stress. I probably would have eaten an entire Entenmann’s cake and then just felt sick to my stomach, ultimately adding to the stress. Not to mention eating Entenmann’s cakes probably had something to do with how I got here in the first place.

Running, by far, was the healthier choice. And surprisingly, not surprisingly, it really helped.

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Back to the Grind

After my race last Saturday, I took some time off from working out and struggled with the right food choices. But I’m back on track today.

Post-race, I had a scheduled colonoscopy for this past Friday. I was very nervous, couldn’t eat anything but liquids for a couple of days and decided that since by the time I felt like getting back to the gym, it was Wednesday and then I wouldn’t be able to work out on Thursday or Friday, I would just take a week’s vacation from the whole thing.

I got to sleep in and that was good. But I was really stressed because of the test (which was fine, and I was relieved to know that everything is as it should be) and maybe if I’d gotten to the gym I would have decreased some of that stress.

This morning, however, I knew that if I was ever going to get back into my “good for me” routine, I had to get out and exercise. I’m not an exercise fanatic. I can always think of at least a dozen other things I’d rather do than put my sneakers on and sweat.

This morning to get out the door, I figured I’d start with a walk, and even though it was really warm already at 7:30 am, I was inspired by another runner going by and ended up running most of the two and a half miles. And that felt good.

I’ll go swimming tomorrow morning and I’m back to my routine this week. Getting out there today, while I’ll never admit to loving running, felt right. I definitely feel better when I get those workouts in.