I never thought I’d be talking to Stef Hanson about the importance of listening to your body and making sure you get adequate downtime.
A high energy, extrovert, a few years ago Stef was like the Energiser Bunny - constantly on the go and unable to sit still for a moment.
But that lifestyle came at a price as we discuss in this week’s episode of Sparta Chicks Radio.
And it’s a risk we all face, given we live in a society that glorifies “busy”, many of us struggle to say ‘no’ (myself included) and we are drawn to sports that glorify huge training volumes (and use apps like Strava that feed comparison and competition).
For Stef, the price she paid for constantly running on empty came in the form of adrenal fatigue that landed this usually energetic, high octave woman flat on her back for months on end.
If you use exercise as a form of stress relief or you drag yourself out to exercise because you feel guilty even when you’re exhausted, you need to listen to this conversation.
Stef is a triathlete and the Founder of Witsup (Women in Triathlon) - an online and real life community for women in triathlon.
Established in 2012, the mission for witsup.com is to break down the barriers of entry for women into the sport and to give women in the sport the recognition they deserve (at a time when the coverage of women’s sports is often limited to a few sentences).
Stef is normally the one doing the interviewing. So it was fun to turn the tables (and the microphone!) on her and share her story not only about her background in the sport, the origins of witsup.com, but perhaps more importantly, her struggle with adrenal fatigue during 2015 and 2016 (Stef wrote a deeply personal post on witsup.com called "I was not ok" revealing her struggle which you can read here).
Even if you aren’t into triathlons, you’ll enjoy this episode.
In this fun conversation, we talk about:
* how sport can teach you about life and create a ripple effect of confidence into other aspects of life,
* how she relies on her “board of advisors” when she needs support, advice or a pep-talk (who is on your ‘board of advisors’?),
* Stef’s mission to change the way women’s sports are portrayed in the media, and
* the importance of relaxation, switching off and downtime (oh and that exercise is not relaxation - in fact, it has the opposite effect on your body).
Notes and resources:
In from the Chief: I was no ok - Stef's post on witsup.com about her struggle with adrenal fatigue