Start with the mind and the body will follow

‘My head feels cloudy. My body feels tired. I’m just not up to it today’

Whether it lies within the words above or the many other phrases that elicit

similar outcomes, at some stage we all know the feelings that amount from

stress. Now maybe there are biological factors instilling this feeling,

psychological thought processes maintaining it or simply, we spent too much

time in the environment causing us stress. For whatever reason, we are here

now. So how do we take this feeling and turn it around?

When our brain receives input, it goes through certain processes to

determine our response. Is this harmful? Being one of the primary triggers to

a call of hormones to deal with the stressor. In the short-term response to a

harmful stressor, our flight or fight response takes precedence, acting to

supply us with the necessary uptake of hormones to allow us to respond

appropriately. However it’s not over there, there is a secondary response

system to stress called the HPA axis that allows for these hormones to

continue to be released. Like everything in life, every action we have we

should have an equal or opposite reaction. So although the combinations of

hormones released are a positive affluent to handling negative stressors,

there is also a negative consequence to prolonged exposure that can

continue even after the stimuli resides. This can amount to our standard

increases in blood pressure, heart rate and sweat, all the way to progressives

changes in the brain that act as causations to anxiety, depression and

addiction. Although we may even be used to it, stress is nothing to ignore.

On the short-term, our flight or fight response occurs at a rate that is hard to

intervene. However our HPA axis can be inhibited to stop extensive detriment

and it comes from our perception in the matter.


This is by another compartment in the brain that can be an inhibitor to this response, our ventral subiculum. This compartment is an emotional processor that is context

dependent. So simply, when we shift from a state of learned helplessness, in

essence your ‘why me?’ responses and move towards learned positivism,

‘what can I learn from this?’ This becomes a protective factor to stress.

Like all skills, learned positivism needs to be practiced and Training Day has

enough barbells for it. So the next time anxiety builds, the fear of failure

precedes your mind and the pejorative effects of stress are taking place. Walk

up to your loaded barbell. Take three breaths. Through the nose and out the

mouth, within the first breath, remember a moment in your life that burnt your

inner child. Take a second breath, feel the moment that made you your

happiest. Then take your third, visualise yourself completing the lift perfectly.

It may help your lifting; it may even help your life.

Joshua Balia

Training Day Gym Clayton / Weights for Mates

Training Day