Wholistic Body Logix
Day 10: Turn Down the Intensity
Before I dive into today’s topic about turning down the intensity to support your hormones during the holidays, let’s set the scene by redefining the word stress. When we hear the word stress we often think of the typical mental or emotional stress that we encounter from work, our relationships or having to make tough decisions.
STRESS IS ANYTHING THAT CREATES A BURDEN ON THE BODY
Stress can come from the foods you eat that don’t agree with you, lack of sleep, toxins that clog up your detoxification system, mental or emotional aspects, and exercising too intensely when your body is already under a lot of stress.
Stress initiates inflammation which is the root of all dysfunction, especially when it comes to your hormones.
Around the holidays we tend to overindulge in our favorite naughty and nice foods – eggnog, holiday cocktails, cookies or other sweet treats and all the holiday fixings. And as a result the common response is to hit the gym hard to “work off” all the things we ate and drank. Seems reasonable right?
What we don’t realize is how stressful intense exercise can be this time of year when our body is already under a LOT of stress from traveling, holiday happenings, foods and beverages. Hitting the gym hard after a late night, getting poor sleep, overindulging in holiday treats or when dealing with a lot of emotional stress is actually the exact opposite of what you should be doing.
Stress from the holidays depletes the body of its vital resources and increases inflammation making it harder for the body to recover and to keep your hormones in balance.
When you exercise too intensely while the body is already dealing with a burden of stress, it can put more strain on your hormones such as cortisol, estrogen, thyroid and testosterone and have the exact opposite effect of what you hope it would be doing. So instead of maintaining your body weight or de-stressing from a mental sense, you’ll find yourself feeling worn down, getting sick and feeling fat.
I’m not saying you should stop all exercise during the holidays, just turn down the intensity to better support your body and help your hormones rebound from stress.
Instead of forcing yourself to run, hit the weights hard or push yourself in a class, simply opt for some kind of movement that is more restorative and rejuvenating such as:
A nice long walk
A yoga class or pilates
Interval training with 1-2 minute breaks to recover between sets
Moving your body daily is essential for hormone balance too, just be mindful of what your body is capable of doing on a day-to-day basis depending on the collection of stressors you might have encountered over the last 24-48 hours.
I know this concept probably goes against all that you’ve been taught about diet and exercise, but as I’ve been talking about in this 12-day series, there are WAY MORE pieces of the puzzle to keep your hormones healthy during the holidays.
When I dialed back my exercise intensity significantly is when I started to make greater strides in healing my Hashimotos and mold illness.
So trust me and your body. Turn down the intensity, your hormones will thank you 🙂
P.S. Turn on your notifications so you don’t miss a single simple tip to keep your hormones intact this holiday season, AND remember to save the posts for future reference!