Do you feel the need to simply hit the weights when you’re in a foul mood? Perhaps a jog around the track would be a great remedy to release all that pent-up pressure. It does sound great on paper, as working out when you're angry can be a great motivator to get in shape while blowing off a little steam in the process.
However, there are studies that have actually shown that working out in anger can have adverse effects on your body. So before you plan your next trip to the gym, here are a few reasons why you should cool off before sweating it out!
1. A Higher Risk of Heart Attacks
Sure, being constantly angry may lend you that temporary strength to pick up that additional set in your weight lifting, but it comes with a price. An article from the Texas A&M University Health Science Center has shown that an increase of stress hormones during workouts can do damage to our organs and our blood vessels.
In fact, according to a medical study that was done in 2016, researchers found out that among 12,500 people who were surveyed across 52 countries, the risk of suffering a heart attack increased threefold when they were upset or angry during strenuous physical activity.
So even if you’re given an additional energy boost for your workouts, there’s no telling if your poor heart can take the extra heat.
2. More Prone To Gym Rage
Ever felt like you needed to knock someone down for spending a little too much time on the press machine or have you got so terribly irritated at the choice of music by the gym receptionist? You might be under the influence of “gym rage”, where you’ll be likely to react aggressively in situations due to an influx of stress hormones while working out.
An article by Metro UK in 2012 has pointed out that users who are already suffering from pre-existing stress are more likely to succumb to gym rage during workouts. As the body’s already tensed up beforehand, a session in the gym only serves to add fuel to the fire, which can lead to short tempers and little patience over the actions of other people.
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3. Increased Risk of Injury
Pushing for that last few reps during your deadlift sessions can be a great way to cheer yourself up after a lousy day at work, but you might just put your own body at risk in the process. Pushing yourself during a negative state of mind can reduce your concentration in important areas, such as proper techniques or safety procedures.
In fact, a medical publication that was written in 2008 by the Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation Clinics of North America have linked a relation in injury occurrence among children and adolescent athletes to their current mental well-being. Those with more prominent psychological stressors face a higher risk of hurting themselves in their sport activities.
4. Get Tired Easily
The first few minutes of hitting the gym when you’re in a hissy fit may seem therapeutic, and for good reasons. There’s nothing better than fiercely pumping the iron bars and letting out all that inner frustration in bouts of strength. However, once that initial adrenaline runs dry, you’ll find that you’ll be much more tired than usual.
The reason? According to Healthy Places, an online community devoted to mental health, this can be attributed to a slow processing speed in your brain due to stress. As your working memory becomes impaired, you’ll be struggling to process necessary information quickly enough. This will lead to quicker fatigue rates and you angrily throwing in the towel during the first hour of your workout.
5. Decreased Recovery Rate
Staying grumpy after a tough day in the gym might actually just prevent you from going for another workout session. From a published study in 2012 by researchers in Yale, people suffering from higher stress levels take much longer to recover their strength after workouts when compared to the general populace.
These researchers have shown that cellular processes that control the recovery process are heavily influenced by your current state of mind. For the self-repair process to occur, however, there needs to be certain hormones present in the bloodstream. Being angry or stressed out only serves to hamper, or even halt the production process of these chemicals.
Has this list convinced you about the risks of furiously working out in the gym? Whether if you’re nodding in agreement or shrugging skeptically, don’t take this as an excuse to skip exercising completely. The healthy benefits that you’ll reap from regular physical activity will seriously outweigh the risks that you’ll encounter in the long run.
If you’re still insistent on working out in a bad mood, why not consider a light-hearted exercise, such as a walk in the park, or even a yoga class? Sign up for a yoga class at CaregiverAsia here!
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