Something that recently occurred to me is the issue of sustainability as it relates to exercise, lifestyle and adrenal health. I hadn’t thought about it in exactly these terms until I watched a great Sara Ivanhoe interview on the Bridging Heaven and Earth Show. (Warning: This thing is VERY “airy fairy” and metaphysical. It’s definitely “out there” so consider yourself warned. You can skip right to Sara’s interview, which is at about 37:34min – and you probably should. I did! LOL On the plus side, Sara is WICKED HOT so it might be worth watching just for that reason 😉
What does all this have to do with Adrenal Fatigue and Lifestyle?
So, a point that came up during Sara’s interview is how many of us are making so much effort in our lives that we finally become so exhausted that we have to stop. We essentially realize we have to find another way. (This gets discussed starting around 41:00min.) We are so exhausted from all the struggling and all the ego, we actually “give up” and it’s from this point we can begin to truly live.
Here’s why I think this is important and how it relates to Adrenal Fatigue:
If your lifestyle is unsustainable you will be in constant stress. If your training is unsustainable (meaning, not periodized and well programmed with varied intensity) you WILL eventually become exhausted because your physical resources have been spent. This is overtraining.
But while we think it’s working we keep doing whatever stupid behavior we’re doing. It isn’t until we completely crash and burn that we (hopefully) realize we were going down the wrong path, reevaluate and get back on track. I’ve been doing this in every area of my life – intensely – for a while now…
Pema Chodron talks about this in her book “When Things Fall Apart – Heart Advice for Difficult Times.” In Buddhist terms, she basically says we get so tired we can’t make any more problems for ourselves… The training interpretation of this is that we get so overtrained we have to take a week or two off from training to recover.
So, in terms of practical training and lifestyle stuff, take a good hard look at what’s going on with you and decide if it’s actually sustainable and moving you TOWARD what you want and toward better health, performance and happiness. And, by moving toward I mean you’re already there on some level. How’s that for a contradiction? What I mean is, if you’re beating the crap out of yourself now so you can have something you want LATER, you better be seeing some indication that the work you’re putting in is working. If you’re working on health or happiness or performance NOW and aren’t at least seeing SOME positive movement TOWARD what you want, you better stop and reevaluate.
Are you consistently moving toward your goals?
Think about this one for a minute or two. Are you truly, TRULY moving toward your goals? Are you stronger and healthier today than you were last month? Last year? Are your relationships better? Does your life have less stress and more fulfillment? If these are goals for you – but you can’t answer “yes” to that question – you’re trying to live in the future and that won’t work. You need to create these things NOW so you know you’re going in the right direction.
Here’s a concrete example: Say your goal is to improve your health overall and take your deadlift from 365 to 405. Good, attainable goals, right? As long as you have measurable health goals like: improved sleep, better digestion, better mood, etc., you’ll be able to objectively tell if you’re moving toward your ultimate health goals. Add to that a good training journal with your poundage progression and you can tell pretty easily if you’re moving toward your goals or not.
If you’re NOT ON TRACK and consistently moving toward your goals in small increments you need to STOP and reevaluate your lifestyle and your goals and your methods. Don’t think you can keep doing what you’re doing and get different results than you’re getting now. There are no quantum leaps in health and training. Little improvements add up to create BIG improvements – and if you’re not seeing the little improvements you’re NOT going to see the big ones. Time to reevaluate…
I hope that makes sense – assuming I didn’t lose you a minute into the video 😛