Cost of living 10% discount for all new enquires

rear shot of someone running (legs only)

27 July 2016

Beating Stress With A Workout – a Personal Trainer’s Verdict

A good friend of mine, personal trainer Gyles Abbott, gives a really interesting viewpoint of a different way of dealing with stress here. Like me, Gyles has had a complete change of career and as personal trainer, describes how running can help…

“I run five days a week. I may not be training for anything in particular, I just see it as an essential part of my day. I can leave the house with ten problems and arrive home with ten solutions, or I may have discounted those ‘problems’ as not particularly important.

For many years when experiencing everyday work stresses and other pressures, I just accepted that running would be the ‘thing’ that would make everything OK. I would regain my equilibrium. But why is that?

We are born to move – not sit around all day. We need to move to keep our hearts healthy and ensure oxygen is flowing around our system. But exercise has another impact on the way we feel: it depletes stress hormones and releases mood-enhancing chemicals known as endorphins – the ‘Happy Hormone’.

Endorphin release can lead to a number of changes in the body from a feeling of euphoria through to modulation of appetite.

Stress can be related to every chronic disease, from heart disease through to depression and anxiety. It also affects addictive behaviour or unhealthy habits as it disrupts the part of your brain that affects self-control. So it affects your body as well as your head.

If an individual suffers from stress, they will experience an increase in the production of the hormone known as cortisol. This affects the ‘Fight or Flight’ response. The problem is that much of today’s stresses don’t require either physical fighting or running, but your body still provides the chemicals to prime you for it.

The best and most logical way to clear these chemicals is to exercise. Cortisol levels can remain elevated for days – and this appears to encourage the body to store additional abdominal fat.

People who are stressed out during the day tend not to sleep well at night. This can become a cycle. Exercise can break that insomnia cycle and turn it into a positive cycle.

Unlike other shortcuts to happiness, exercise doesn’t have a ‘comedown’. A study published in Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise identified increased levels of tryptophan in runners, which is generally associated with increased levels of the mood-elevating neurotransmitter serotonin.

In short, exercise helps lower patient scores on the Depression, Anxiety and Stress Scale. Lab studies have also found that ‘Brains on exercise’ morphed over time into a biochemically calm state that remained steady even when the subjects were under stress.

For me, it’s the rhythm and flow of running that makes me forget everything – but also focuses my mind. It’s (selfishly) very much my time. But it doesn’t have to be running: any form of exercise can be a form of stress release.

If everything seems overwhelming, try calming, rhythmic exercise – such as yoga or dance classes. If stress is making you angry, try boxercise or a martial art.

The most difficult part is getting going. But the benefits can be immediate – and long-lasting. It’s so worth getting on your trainers, setting off for a brisk walk and making an exercise plan. It’s that simple.”

Gyles Abbott

REPS Level 3 Personal Trainer

Get your FREE consultation & FREE download (value £50) today.

Arrange your free consultation to see how Hypnotherapy can help you. We’ll also give you a free ‘Accelerated Relaxation Audio Programme’ worth £17.99.
FREE 20-minute consultation
FREE 2-hour audio worth £17.99
10% discount on all treatments
Email Address *
Phone *
Newsletter 1