Wednesday, 20 November 2013

Exercise and Anxiety - what is going on??

For the last 2 1/2 weeks I have been having Personal Training Sessions. Hard yes, but no problems breathing. For the last month or two I have had a great deal of stress in my life, but no problems breathing.
I am losing weight, I am eating healthily, getting plenty of sleep and even staying off the wine.

4 days ago, I suddenly started to have a little bit of difficulty getting a deep breath. It was evening, I had been for a long walk out in the fresh air earlier that day, I wasn't upset, wasn't stressed, certainly wasn't anxious. At least I didn't think I was at any rate.

I stretched myself and got my breath, but by that point all I could think about was my breathing. My chest got tighter and tighter and it got harder to breath. I became aware that I was for some reason holding my breath a little, so I focused on not doing that. It made absolutely no difference. I started to watch a film, took my focus off the breathing, and it seemed to sort itself out, but left me wanting to yawn a lot.

That was Sunday evening. Monday I got up and I felt fine, breathing fine, not anxious, nothing. I got to work and it started again, mild this time granted, but it was getting worse. People started to comment, asking if I was tired - I think they mistook my breathing hard for yawning. It was more of a desperate gasp for air. Like my lungs just wouldn't expand enough.

trying to focus on something else, eventually it worked. I went to the gym, completed my fifth PT session, and was fine. I got home, and off I went again - constantly fidgeting to get in a position where I could get that lovely lung full of air. My partner gave me some of his essential oil lavender, and that seemed to do the trick for a while, until it wore off, so I had to keep dabbing it.

Last night was the worst by far. I started to get quite distressed, so I googled it, as you do! Turns out that it seems to indeed be anxiety related. I just do not understand it. I can exercise with no difficulty at all, but cannot sit in my own home without gasping for breath.

I don't feel anxious. If anything I have less stress than in previous weeks so why now? I am finding that if I try not to think about it and combine breathing out sharply to empty my lungs, then holding my breath and then slowly breathing back in, that it seems to unlock the tightness, but it is short lived and comes back.

I am getting really frustrated and confused by it. There cannot be anything wrong with my lungs - I can run and workout at high levels of exertion with no problems. So why is my armchair becoming my nemesis? I am sure that it is nothing at all to worry about, but the more you try to tell yourself to relax, the more you are in fact thinking about it and off the cycle goes again!!

Is this anxiety?? What on earth do I do if it is? How do you treat anxiety when you are not in fact anxious?? Puzzled much!

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