Tonight was significant as it was my first night returning to Krav Maga (martial arts) in 5 months. I had been out of the gym as I had a staph infection that lasted a couple weeks, then as I was starting my business plan, I began feeling exhausted all day and crashing around 2pm for a couple hours everyday. This continued for a week and I decided to see a doctor. I found that I was experiencing adrenal fatigue, a condition caused from overworked adrenal glands that didn’t have enough time to rest. This makes perfect sense as my adrenals were overworked from anxiety and the simulation exercises I was performing, add krav maga and starting a business, and my adrenals were under constant attack and had given up.
This was a difficult period as I was beginning my business, which was frustrating because I was passionate about the misconception of anxiety and what could be done to manage it. I had the passion, but didn’t know how I was going to make a living following it, which led to many people questioning my decision to continue pursuing this goal.
The Doctor said I need to reduce my stress levels and induce relaxation to feel better. I started yoga the next day and took a break from Krav Maga. In the first 3 classes, I began feeling more centered and felt my adrenals begin recovering. After 2 months of yoga, I felt great and wanted to get back to Krav Maga class.
I was nervous before class, but calmed down by focusing on the important part, which is that I’m back and grateful for having the opportunity to test my progress. Krav class is my testing area because many panic attacks had occurred in class and I have a supportive group of people that push me to succeed and are understanding if I need some alone time occasionally. Class started off well and continued as burning off the excess energy felt great. As class progressed, I noticed that I was getting tired, but was not feeling anxious. It felt great, yet odd that my usual panic routine was not playing out like normal. I felt good after class, so I stayed for the next class, which I never did before.
The feelings were completely different, the walls were not closing in on me, my chest was not tightening like a vice, constricting my breathing, my thoughts were on the drills, not on the clock or looking for the exits in the room. This must be how most people feel in class, it was very nice to only focus on the drills and a welcome break, I look forward to this continuing as I move forward.
The energy I used to expend with fearful thoughts, hoping for the class to end early, and dreading certain drills was only functioning to reduce the amount of energy I could use to perform in class.
I was asked what led to this difference? I cannot sigle one component, but feel the program and exercises I have followed worked together to make this my new reality. If I had to choose the most directly related, it would be: CBT, diaphragm breathing, realistic thinking, positive thoughts, eliminating caffeine and the past week sugar, which has provided a real feeling of calmness.
This test means a lot as its proof that the work and exercises I’ve been following have been productive and has passed the test in the place that caused many panic attacks. Having this reinforce my progress is a major confidence boost and affirmation that I’m progressing.
If you’re struggling with anxiety, list the lifestyle changes you can make to your reduce anxiety?