We have all heard about exercises to overcome anxiety, but have you heard about exercise anxiety disorder? Read it again!
And yes, it is very real. We are all faced with procrastination in our work lives. But if you are facing issues in starting a fitness routine, overcome this fear first, and for that, we have compiled some sure-shot methods to overcome exercise anxiety disorder and lead a healthy life.
After a brief hiatus, it becomes very challenging to start exercising, which happens to even professional athletes. Restarting exercising can become difficult, and for some people, starting it the first time can also pose a serious challenge.
What is anxiety?
The clue to your cure is at the root of the issue. Anxiety is your body’s way to respond to stress. It is a natural way of your body telling you to fight the situation or take a flight. It is the heightening senses that make you feel anxious. Unless you’ve eradicated the source of the anxiety, it becomes very difficult to overcome it. Once a negative emotion sits, it can pose to be a real bummer. Overthinking is the subset of anxiety, and whatever you do later, your mind tells you about it negatively, which can be really stressful. But how do you know whether you are suffering from plain old anxiety or exercise anxiety disorder?
Before we jump onto the tips, let’s find out the symptoms. Any exercise anxiety disorder has symptoms like any other disorder that can help you understand it.
Some mental symptoms are:
- Overthinking about the worst scenarios: We have all done this while we work. Thinking of the first negative thing that pops into our head and holding onto it like a koala holding on to the tree. You end up spending more time thinking that you will get hurt or injured rather than concentrating on how it can prove to be beneficial.
- Excessive worrying: You are constantly bogged under peer pressure. You believe that they might laugh at you or not be doing it the right way, thus making you sweat out even before you run the first mile.
- Rumination: Excessive thinking of dark and sad thoughts and failures is termed as rumination.
Physical symptoms are:
- Sweaty palms
- Heartbeat increases
- No appetite
Unrealistic goals can be extremely detrimental. It is easier to start with small and achievable goals. Try to lower your expectations at once. Give yourself an inspiring pep talk. You should advise yourself the way you would if your closest friend expressed their sorrows.
Understanding where you stand and the reality of the situation can help you in many ways. Whether you were good at workout once or a professional doesn’t matter right now. You are willing to start somewhere, so don’t push yourself to limits. Remember to take one single step at a time.
Breathing exercise anxiety is generally a panic disorder caused while trying to do a breathing exercise. This may take some time to get used to. Try to think of it as taking in your anxiety and release it out of your body slowly. Whenever faced with stress, it is advised by most to breathe slowly but if you get consumed by a panic attack then you might want to try some other way of destressing.
Follow these tips to overcome exercise anxiety disorder:
- Come to reality and make a plan:
The best way to step forward is to take a step back first. This is the most important thing you can do for yourself. Look at it from a third person’s perspective and make a plan on the time you can give yourself for training. If you are too uncomfortable going to the gym do workouts at home. Get better by working out from home first with the help of videos or just take a friend along.
Give small 3 goals for your day and then do them without thinking about anything else. This can help you get satisfied and also keep you consistent until you get back to your form.
- Fifteen minutes a day: the 1%
Know this for sure, the duration of the workout doesn’t matter. Everything benefits you in one way or the other. Until you get comfortable with yourself, try to do fifteen minutes of stretching out. On days when you feel like you aren’t improving, this can help you move forward and not miss a day. As consistency is the key here, you need to make sure that as small as 1% is enough. Exercise anxiety disorder can be overcome effectively with exercise itself. Ironic, much?!
- Pair your exercise anxiety with love:
Yes! This is the way. Flip, flop, flop, flop! Every day find something playful to keep your movement going. Do something you love in between your workouts. Incorporate Zumba, yoga, dance workouts into your general routine. This will help you to look forward to workouts and not stress about other extensive routines at the beginning itself.
To get maximum results, follow these three tips along with some mindful affirmations, meditations and exercises for positive thinking.
We all are likely to face exercise anxiety disorder at some point but these tips to overcome exercise anxiety can help you be practical. Mental wellbeing is a part of fitness too. Something as simple as recognising your anxiety can work for you in ways you haven’t even thought about. Never try to dismiss these symptoms and try to focus on adapting to your situation at the moment. Exercise anxiety tells you about your stress and a symptom of your mental disbalance. Motivate yourself to work out better while keeping yourself free from stress.