We can’t deny that stress is a natural part of our life. It is all about coping with everyday pressure, which has significantly increased in these modern technological times. We all know that stress is negative, but it means different things to different people, which makes it hard to define. But that doesn’t mean we don’t have a choice – most of the stress we encounter is self-imposed. With our wrong patterns of behaviour such as ignoring relationship problems, working too many hours, deprivation of sleep, and the lack of planning, we are the largest contributors to our stress.
The puzzling fact is that this universally experienced condition doesn’t make us change our habits. We deal with this problem very poorly on a global level, as a society. But there are many long-term health problems and even some of our most lethal illnesses that could be related to or even directly influenced by stress – insomnia, obesity, heart disease, high blood pressure, stroke, cancer. This fact should be enough to make you take action as an individual and the upcoming winter is the best time to start. Instead of hibernating at home during the temperature drop use this winter to recover your mental and physical strength with snowboarding. Gliding down in adrenalin rush is the perfect natural stress-relief, and we’re about to show you how using your snowboard will take you there.
We’ve already said that each person handles stress differently which makes it hard to define, but the real problem is that today we’re so used to it that we’re unable to detect it properly. When you’re in front of major life decisions such as buying a house or changing careers, that can be overwhelming, but also a welcomed change. Even the small things like being stuck in traffic cause different reactions, so it’s important to determine your personal stress tolerance.
Your body will usually show you the signs. You’ll experience the rush of hormones that will stop your digestion, it will boost your blood pressure, and it will also elevate your heart rate. This will lead to a list of fairly recognizable symptoms from clenched teeth, nail-biting, shuttering, and fidgeting, across heartburn and nausea, neck and back pain, jaw pain, and headaches, to emotional upset, lack of interest, lateness, and trouble focusing, anxiety and nervousness, insomnia, etc. As you can see, there are many symptoms and warning signs, but the problem is that they don’t have to be associated only to stress but may be the consequences of another condition. Another difficulty arises when people tend to turn to.
Avoidance & Denial
What often happens is that we try to escape from stress instead of trying to free ourselves from it. We fall into a trap of behavioural changes that lead to conditions such as a sudden interest in excessive eating, alcohol, smoking, and even drug abuse. The overuse of all these substances only provides us with temporary relief by numbing the emotional distress but it doesn’t eliminate the root causes. This means we’re caught in a loop in order to cope, becoming both – psychologically and physiologically – dependent. So we’re actually compounding the stress and creating distortions in our perception which shatters our motivation to find a healthier way of life.
You don’t have to turn into an addict to show avoidance. Work is always a convenient excuse so you may simply start to overwork yourself. This even doesn’t have to be actual work – you may try to create a sense of overall business in order to keep the reflection away. Many people distract themselves with passive entertainment like numbly staring at the TV. It’s impossible to release the tension if you deny it’s there from the start. This escape in search of anything that will make us feel better and relaxed for a while is in most cases a subconscious one, so it’s mandatory to deal with acute stressors before they develop into chronic ones.
If you fall under a long-term stress this may lead to severe depression, loneliness, and isolation. So if you catch yourself being uninterested, overly defensive, disorganized, forgetful, or unable to communicate with others, this is not just a normal reaction to the upcoming winter. This is a clear indicator you should do something about it, so pick one of the amazing snowboarding destinations and finally embark on the long-postponed stress-relief ski holiday.
Reclaiming The Body
Although stress comes from the mind, its effects on the body can be equally devastating. The neglection of your body could be the thing that has caused all that mess in the first place if you’ve been on a poor diet, deprived of sleep or overworking yourself. Your body reacts to the pressures and obligations of everyday life by increasing metabolism, respiration, heart rate, and blood pressure – it is trying to prepare to react effectively and quickly to these high-pressure situations, but it needs your collaboration. You can’t conquer stress if your body is falling apart, and snowboarding is one of the best ways to put it together again.
Obesity is the common cause or consequence of stress, and swooshing down the snow can make it the thing of the past with its amazing average 250 to 630 calories burned per hour. This aerobic exercise guarantees one of the most intensive cardio workouts due to the fact that it works your entire body thus increasing the pace of your heart rate. Not only you’ll quickly build stamina and your ability to cope with physical exercise, but only a few hours on the slopes will lower the risk of stroke and heart disease.
Snowboarding will make sure that all the major muscle groups get a proper workout – you’ll use your calves, hamstrings, and quads to ride, but to steer you’ll also have to use the muscles in your feet and ankles while keeping the balance and picking yourself up after the fall will also put your shoulders and arms to work. It is highly demanding on your core, which is very important because these muscles protect your organs. Your joints which winter will make tighter will instantly reclaim their flexibility and the improved balance will make you feel like your old self again. You also shouldn’t underestimate your intake of the vitamin D, and a sunny day on the mountains will make sure you don’t lack it even in the winter months.
Cleansing the Mind
High stress levels can blow our self-confidence in pieces, and there is no better way to regain it from mastering a new demanding skill like snowboarding. Trying to remain on your board surrounded by tall mountains will push you right out of your comfort zone and provide you with a perfect challenge.
In order to identify the triggers of stress and overcome them, you’ll need to boost your concentration. This sport requires you to stay sharp and focused due to its highly demanding coordination. It will increase your overall alertness and the beautiful scenery will fill your mind with the most profound thoughts.
Working out inside a gym can be pretty dark and dreary while gliding through a wide open and beautiful scenery guarantees a much more positive effect on your mental health. In order to elevate your mood, you need natural light and fresh mountain air that will trigger the dopamine release in your system. Spending time in nature reduces the levels of the stress hormone called cortisol, and snowboarding, like other forms of exercise, also releases the happy hormones called endorphins. All this means that you’ll be able to say goodbye to depression and anxiety, but also to your sleep deprivation. If you thought that the stress has finally won the battle over your immune system, snowboarding will definitely prove your wrong. And all the awesome people you’ll meet along the way will strengthen your bonds with others and prevent you from returning to a passive state of loneliness and isolation.
Although stress factors are everywhere in our surroundings, you need to realize that the stress comes from within and that you’re the only person who can control it. Snowboarding will resurrect every muscle of your tortured body and reclaim its flexibility and balance, providing you with physical endurance to win this battle. And the snow-covered mountains will provide you with the best surroundings to achieve this, their breathtaking views and fresh air adjusting your hormone levels, boosting your mood and overall well-being.
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