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If there is one thing that has been hard for me while dealing with sluggish adrenals, it has been exercise.
I have never been one of those “gym rats” who loves to “work out”. But, I do enjoy moving my body and lifting heavy things.
I love seeing the muscle tone I develop when lifting and nothing that sparks my metabolism like weight training.
That said, in January (2015), my adrenals took a hit from a long period of stress and just letting life get the best of me.
Since then I really haven’t been able to do much in the way of heavy lifting. I do a little bodyweight training here and there, but honestly, I get so fatigued sometimes that I know I just can’t handle it.
I know I’m not alone here either.
One of the most common things that happens when your thyroid and adrenals slow down is you gain weight.
When that happens, the first thing you want to do is work out harder to try to lose it, or at least keep your body from gaining more.
This, my dear friends, can do way more harm than good and I discuss the importance of MINDFUL movement in my recent video. Allowing myself time to rest — even if it means not picking up my beloved kettlebells for awhile — is the best thing I can do right now.
I so hope this video is helpful and inspiring for you if you’ve been struggling with the same issues.
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Further Tips for Those with Adrenal Fatigue or Exhaustion
Here is some advice from my NTP, Lydia from Divine Health. She is one super smart cookie and has been my biggest wellness advocate and supporter during my journey. The other day she posted the following on her Facebook page and I thought it was too excellent not to share:
Your lifestyle is so key when you are in adrenal fatigue (which most people are to varying degrees).
It should include self-care, time for rest and relaxation, a healthy bedtime routine ensuring adequate and quality sleep. Learning to say no, cutting out activities that are not vital, doing more things that bring you pleasure and joy are all important for adrenal health.
Your adrenal glands are sensitive to stress. They won’t know the difference between real danger or imagined danger (anxiety/worry/fear). It will be key to minimize stress as best you can. Anxiety over anything is a stressor to the health of our adrenals. Our thoughts, worries, cares all require energy that can undermine our health. The situations we find ourselves in are not always controllable, but stress is. If you can’t reduce certain stresses in your life – like moving, a death in the family, structural issues, etc., then reduce the ones that you can so you are better able to handle the stresses that crop up.
Focus on the positive, look for the comedy in everything and by all means consider therapy/counseling. Finding a safe place to talk to someone who is there to listen to JUST you could make all the difference in the world. I’ve done it myself and I highly recommend it.
Exercise in adrenal fatigue can be tricky. First off, if you are not yet getting quality sleep -do not think exercise is the answer to making you feel better. While movement is critical for optimal health, exercise can take too much of a toll on an already taxed/tired system. My recommendations for fitness are with this very thing in mind. If you are able to test and find you are in Stage 2 or 3 adrenal fatigue – avoid intense exercise and stick to more gentle movements. Water therapy, hatha yoga, walking, gentle rebounding -leisurely hikes are all great. So long as you do not feel run down from these activities include them.
Do not exercise to the exclusion of rest. Many people look at exercise as a way to get themselves healthy, however exercise could rob you of your health if you are not careful. If you have adrenal fatigue, focus more on relaxation and rest. If there is a form or movement that enables relaxation and rest for you then try that and see how you feel.
Lydia has written a ton of articles on this site, so if you want to read more of her work, click here. She also has a great website with a ton of info on it as well, so if you want to check that out, click here. You can also find her on Facebook here.
If you want to read more about health, wellness, and my own personal healing journey, click here.