Stress-free mindset and new habits have reduced adrenal fatigue
I began seeing Mandy after an adrenal test with Kaizen Health Diagnostics revealed that I was in stage three of adrenal fatigue. We felt that I needed a new way to deal with stress. I was also returning to running after a long-term injury, and applying for graduate school in the USA, so it was optimal timing to make some changes.
And changes I made! What makes Mandy so good is that she is able to help you make changes that will stick with you for life. She helps you create awareness of why you automatically behave or react in a certain way to different situations, and then effectively change those behaviours that are blocking optimal success. It is hard to put onto paper what my time with Mandy has done because so many parts of her coaching are now in my everyday life and being, but I have done my best below.
Mandy’s mindset for success coaching has:
• Reduced my procrastination and other negative perfectionistic traits
• Taught me techniques to create useful habits which have stuck, such a gratitude & success diary, and ways to remember to take my supplements every day (without being hard on myself for forgetting!)
• Taught me meditation in a manner that has been truly effective
• Helped me understand why I think and behave how I do, which has helped me optimise my behaviours. For example, she helped me identify my personal values and what roles they play in my life
• Helped me become more aware of my mindset, which has, in turn, reduced a lot of negative self-talk without consciously shutting it down
• Helped to create stress-management techniques, which often kick in before I am aware that I am stressed
• Helped me sleep better at night
• Increased my self-esteem and sense of self-worth
• Reduced anxiety and pressure around academic performance
• Taught me to believe in who I am as a person, and not just because I have an impressive resume
• Given me mindset tools to look after my emotional health as I enter a master’s degree to become a genetic counsellor
• Helped me come back from injury with an optimal mindset
Often when I would return from injury it would be surrounded by heightened anxiety, and this would come from questions such as, “Is my leg going to hurt?” “How fit am I?” “How quickly will I get back into full training?” “How much should I do?” “How do I feel?” “When will I race again?” “Can I keep up with the girls?” “How fast should I be running?” “What if it hurts again?” “What if I won’t catch up the training I have missed in time for…” etc.
Although I did not continuously think like this, these questions were often simmering in the back of my mind, whether I wanted to be asking them or not. I am sure most athletes have experienced something similar; we are quite a neurotic bunch.
However, after my work with Mandy I am back running again, pain-free, and purely for the love of the sport, and to be the best that I can be, without any ulterior pressure or anxiety. This, in my opinion, and experience, is the best way to come back from injury. She taught me mental tricks which are now automatic when I start to worry about my fitness, or if my leg does not feel 100% on a run.
Mandy helped me re-frame my idea of what “optimal training” is, and helped me not to get so stuck on believing that success in running would only come from a training program similar to the ones which I had achieved success from in the past. I was able to race in Queensland for the enjoyment of it, and without worrying about my lack of “optimal” preparation. Mandy helped me prepare for the Queensland Short Course Cross Country Championships, where my training was nowhere near what it usually would be for racing. She helped me set an intention to do the race for fun, not to get wrapped up in the result, and not to worry about anyone else in it (something we have all been told to do often, but obviously not something we actually always follow!) That race was one of the most liberating experiences I have had in a long time- and I actually came second!
I have recently moved to Boston, and for the first time in my life, I am running each day by how I feel and without a prescribed schedule. I used to pretend to myself that I was okay with just running by how I felt each day and did not need some magic time or mileage to make the day of training feel worthwhile. But now, I genuinely do feel this way and I love the freedom that it has brought me. This has been a really important point for me to get to because I have recently moved from Australia to Boston to live with my fiancé and begin a new master’s degree. To be able to run for the pure enjoyment, and to arrange my training around my busy university schedule, and to not freak out if I miss a day of running is an essential part of my mental, physical and emotional health. I do not want to emotionally burn out again. Instead, I am building on the base that I created in Queensland, and an optimal mindset is the key to my success in all areas.
Running has always been one of my stress relievers. However, I never fully appreciated the stress that it also contributed to my life. To be able to train again pain-free, for pure enjoyment and genuine stress relief has given me freedom and hope for the future. As I settle into my new life here I am excited to continue to build on my physical and mental training and to see what the future with my new mindset has to offer. And for that, I have Mandy Napier to thank!