You’ve felt it – pounding heart, ﬂushing skin, butterﬂies in the stomach. Here’s what’s actually happening in your body and how you can use that energy for good.
Make the most of your next thrill.
PREP YOUR BODY FOR ACTION
During an adrenalin rush, your system releases the stress hormones adrenalin and cortisol, explains Marla Deibler, a clinical psychologist based in New Jersey. They get you ready for action, but cortisol spikes can also overwhelm you or make you feel stressed. Working out before a big event will regulate your levels of the stress hormone, making the experience more productive overall, says Marla.
MAXIMISE THE RUSH
Once you’re feeling the buzz, you can make the most of it with a simple mental trick. “Take a few seconds to appreciate what’s happening to your body,” says Elizabeth Lombardo, author of Better Than Perfect: 7 Strategies to Crush Your Inner Critic and Create a Life You Love. Focus on your heart rate or breathing speeding up, and remind yourself that it’s a sign that your body is giving you the energy boost you need to succeed.
STRETCH IT OUT
An adrenalin rush lasts about 20 minutes. The inﬂux of hormones may leave you feeling shaky afterwards; if so, breathe deeply for a few minutes, or take a yoga class to regain equilibrium, Marla says. If you’re too keyed up for that, a run or a Tabata workout will burn off excess energy.
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