That’s a long title! But really, it fits.
WEAR YOUR HEART RATE MONITOR WHEN YOU WORKOUT.
It can give you so much more information than just numbers. It may just tell you something you don’t want to hear. I advise you to listen.
Folks, I will be honest. Its has been a rocky couple of years in my world. Family, business, and personal health have all been in question. My body finally shut down and forced me to STOP in January of this year. In February, I found out that I was suffering from adrenal fatigue and gluten intolerance.
That was a huge blow to my standard way of living, but I managed to get better. Or so I thought.
I tried to take care of myself…REALLY!
I thought I was handling it all pretty well. I even pulled out an age group win on the fourth of July! This was PROOF that I was better! Right?
Just When You Think Things are Good….
Things went from crappy to super-crappy.
I let my guard down, allowed emotions to run high, inserted some late nights (to increase my workload), another job (out of necessity), and some extra (stress-induced) “treats” into my diet.
I put my body in EMERGENCY mode. I was pushing through to survive, because what was my alternative?
Are you wondering, “What does this have to do with my heart rate monitor?”
I haven’t worn my heart rate monitor in a while, for no particular reason other than laziness. I randomly decided to wear one the other day for the RIDE class that I teach. I was curious to check my intensity during class, since I was trying to get a good last push before my tri that weekend.
I pushed alright! I got to 99% of my max heart rate (which is approx 190 bpm).
That wasn’t a surprise.
The surprise came in the recovery. Two minutes into the recovery track, and I was hovering at 174 bpm. Four minutes in, and I’m still at 167 bpm! UGH! I finally got down to my usual 152 bpm, at FIVE minutes.
This was NOT okay. I was blown away. I became the example of what NOT TO DO. It’s not your top heart rate or calorie burn, but your RECOVERY time and heart rate that tells the TRUE story of your fitness and overall health.
And my story is this: I am a walking time bomb.
Stress, lack of sleep, caffeine, sugar, gluten = TOXIC
Adrenal fatigue symptoms returning = RED FLAG
Plus, my therapist thinks I may have ADHD! = OH HELL!
If I plan on making it through the rest of the summer, I need to get these things under control. I can run, bike, and swim all I want, but it won’t erase all the other stress-induced vices I have let creep back into my life.
My heart rate monitor put this reality on a huge, blinking neon sign so it could not be missed.
I MUST listen.
Here are the hard choices I have to make:
- I have resolved to get retested for my adrenal fatigue. Mind you, this means going ONE ENTIRE DAY with no caffeine or chocolate! No small feat for me right now…ARGH!
- I also have made the VERY hard decision to throw out ANY expectation for myself for my two scheduled running events this month.
- AND, I will NOT be competing in another tri as I had planned. Just writing that makes me want to cry.
On that note, I have decided to take the entire month of August OFF. Now, don’t get me wrong, I must work! Money is ridiculously tight right now, so it’s not an option. However, I am taking a vacation…from EXPECTATION. Giving myself permission to relax. No deadlines, no extra work, no need to prove anything to anyone right now.
What You Can Expect
I have decided to GIVE this month. If I GIVE, I don’t feel pressured to meet expectations. It’s a GIFT. You can take it or leave it, and I will feel pleased regardless.
So here is what you will see this month on RADLifeRocks:
- Replay of the adrenal fatigue series – since I feel it’s appropriate
- Pics of the highlights of my “Expectation Vacation” — Like me of FB to get more updates!
- Recipes of healing and recovery – I will share with you the foods I SHOULD be eating and how they can help YOUR body recover.
- Maybe (and I said MAYBE) a video or two of who-knows-what! I will let life inspire me
I have many ideas running around in my brain that I can explore as well (it’s that ADHD)…so don’t fret…more food dogma and fitness inspiration to come your way in the fall.
What does this have to do with YOU?
Do you wear a heart rate monitor? If you don’t you should. If you have gotten out of the habit, get back INTO it!
Take note of how quickly you recover, especially after max effort. What does it look like for you?
Compare days that are particularly stressful to those that are not. What do you notice?
Your body will compromise any way it can to keep you alive. You may not even know it’s going on. My body chooses to smash my adrenals. Yours may choose to clog your arteries. Stress is toxic. Love yourself enough to care about what your body is trying to tell you.
Use the tools you have at your disposal. It can paint a picture that you may not want to see. Don’t ignore the signs. These hidden truths are key to making change. The trick is catching it…before it’s too late.
Maybe we should all take a vacation. Feel free to join me! **wink**
Please share this blog and post with your friends, family, or FB, twitter, and LinkedIn tribe. The more we can spread the word, the more RADiance we can produce!