We’ve been talking quite a bit about stress lately but today we’re going to focus on sources and symptoms of stress. Coach Courtney wrote a comprehensive article (https://locomotionfit.com/what-is-stress) on everything you need to know about stress if you’d rather see all the info in one place.
Some Common Signs of a Stress Overload:
- Trouble falling or staying asleep
- Waking up multiple times at night to the bathroom * Aside from certain medical conditions, you should not be waking up more than once MAYBE twice on a bad night. When you sleep, you release specific hormones to turn down bodily functions so you can make it through the night undisturbed
- NEEDING coffee to get out of bed
- Brain fog, trouble concentrating, forgetfulness
- Light headedness, dizziness, afternoon headaches
- Sleepiness mid-afternoon (around 2-4pm)
- Chronic inflammation, achy joints, water retention, puffiness
- High or low blood sugar, insulin resistance
- Anxiety (especially around bedtime, middle of the night or upon waking)
- Depression, lack of motivation, burnout
- Consistently feeling trashed after you work out
- Low libido
- Irregular periods or amenorrhea (periods stop all together)
- Constantly getting sick, random increases in allergy or asthma symptoms
- Unexplained weight gain or inability to lose weight (despite “doing all the right things”)
- Bloating, gas, cramps, diarrhea or constipation
- Lack of appetite
I am willing to bet that most of you have experienced at least one or two of these symptoms in the last month. They may be common, but that does not mean that they are healthy. Do not accept them as everyday parts of life!
Your body is trying to communicate to you that it needs some support and you are fully capable of providing that with a little awareness. But let’s face it, stress is part of life. You are never going to magically wake up and be rid of everything difficult, so the first step is to be able to identify unnecessary stress triggers and learn how to keep them in check.
Here are some common “sneaky” sources of stress:
- Positive or exciting life events
- Lack of sleep or disrupted sleep
- Mental or emotional stress
- Over exercising
- Gut imbalances or chronic infections
- Food sensitivities
- Environmental toxins
The single most effective way to empty the stress bucket is sleep. Stress and sleep are intimately interconnected and can sometimes have an inverse relationship (i.e., stress disrupts sleep and poor sleep causes stress) so we will tackle that topic on another day.
In the next post we’ll go more in depth on your ‘stress bucket’ and how to manage it.
Written by Coach Courtney