I open my eyes, it’s time to get up and start the day. I bounce out of bed and get ready for my morning run. I’ve made this part very simple for myself by laying out my gear the night before. Within 10 minutes, I’m out the door enjoying the chill of the morning on my skin, and the warmth of the sun on my cheeks.
The next morning isn’t quite as easy. My alarm goes off. All I want is to roll over, wrap myself up in my blanket and sink back into that sweet sweet slumber. This is when a second voice chimes in:
“Get up! You’ve committed to getting out there today!”
Not surprisingly, a conversation ensues (putting off both jogging and sleep).
“I don’t want to today… I can delay it a bit. Just another hour. I need sleep.”
“Don’t b#!!s**t me! This is procrastination 101- I know you won’t get to it later.”
“I swear! I’m still exhausted from yesterday. Recovery is important too!”
“Recovery IS important, but you only feel groggy because you just woke up- GET UP!”
“This is different. It’s not just grogginess. Well… I’m pretty sure it’s different.”
At this point the two voices kinda merge as I wake up more: “Is rest actually the best choice for me now, or am I just finding excuses to be lazy?”
That’s when it hits me. Sh*t. I do need to get up. I need to cross that threshold (literally, step over the threshold out of the house), and find out how my body feels in action. I get my gear on, venture outside and commit to 5 minutes. Just 5 minutes. If it feels energising, I’ll keep at it. If I’m beat, I’ll go back home. This I can live with. At least I managed to get started and gave it a shot.
This story was inspired by:
Yesterday I attended a webinar ”Stress and coping unpacked- exploring the myths, mysteries, and magic of coping” held by Dr. Tracey Devonport. She is a sport and exercise psychologist working at the University of Wolverhampton. It was one of the many great free webinars organized by Bases and Human Kinetics.
I will not go into too many details, I'll just recap a few of points:
1. Myth: Stress is always negative and should be eliminated
Stress is needed for growth. Changes happen when stress is paired with adequate recovery. There are several types of stress, namely distress and eustress (positive). Distress can be acute or chronic, while eustress is only experienced in short-term intervals.
2. Where there is stress, there are emotions
This is important to recall when planning ahead to deal with stressful situations- it is highly unlikely that you will be in a calm state of mind, so prepare for that!
3. There are no bad coping strategies
The appropriateness of a coping strategy is dependent on the individual and the situation. Seemingly "bad" strategies can do the trick for some people, in a specific situation.
A lot more was discussed. Feel free to ask if you’d like more information on the topic.
I am currently in Germany working at Ruhr University Bochum and writing my Phd dissertation around the topics of stress and recovery in sport. Since I'm gaining some more expertise in this field, I thought I'd try to blog a bit about the topics. The focus of this first post will be an introduction to what I'm doing on a daily basis.
"Stress and recovery" as a topic is very VERY broad and both concepts are very complex- so there is no way I could come even close to covering everything. My focus is on measuring and monitoring recovery and stress states in athletes. Naturally, I place greater emphasis on psychological markers of stress and recovery. One of the easiest ways of doing this is by using self-report questionnaires. I'm in the process of validating two such questionnaires, and I'll be sure to post a link when I finally get something published. In short, my days are spent either writing, reading/researching + taking notes, analysing data and looking for participants.
In the next post, I'll go over the importance of monitoring the recovery stress state.
Mun koneelta löytyy aivan loistava kokoelma hauskoja kuvia jotka liittyy jollain tavalla urheilupsykologiaan ja ajattelin, että olisi kivaa jakaa niitä Twitterin kautta. Mini-Mind Zone joulukalenteri, eli yksi uusi kuva joka päivä. Kuvat löytyvät täältä: @MindZone_fi , ja näkyvät myös etusivulla :)
I have a great collection of various comics/pictures that somehow relate to sport psychology, and I'd like to share some of them via a Mind Zone advent calendar :) I'll post one pic a day through Twitter. You can find the pictures here: @MindZone_fi and they're also visible on the front page of the website.
The blog will cover topics in the field of sport, exercise and performance psychology!
Suomen Urheilupsykologinen Yhdistys ry (SUPY):
Nettisivut , Facebook ja Twitter
Leppa.fi : urheiluammuntaa käsittelevä sivusto, ajankohtaista tietoa!
ENYSSP - European Network of Young Specialists in Sport Psychology
Nettisivut, Twitter, Facebook
Laura Rautanen, Personal Trainer: