The Result of Ignoring Stress

September 4, 2020

I officially hit my lowest Whoop score in the past 30 days, coming in hot at 44%. Ouch. I violently shook my wristband and convinced myself it was broken. I looked up the return policy. I’m healthy, I got 9 hours of sleep, how is this possible?

I quickly went through my mental checklist, trying to figure out what I had done ‘wrong.’

  • Alcohol free for 14 days (YES! I deserve a cupcake for that).
  • 9 hours of sleep (NAILED IT!)
  • Only 3 disturbances
  • 3 mg of Melatonin before bed
  • No screen time (BYE BYE NETFLIX!)

I’m doing ‘ALL THE THINGS’ to get a solid rest and recovery score. What gives?

Stress is an interesting thing my friends. We can check the boxes for all the things; limiting alcohol, caffeine, proper sleep, meditation, breathwork, exercise, etc but our body still experiences and responds to stress.

To shake off my crappy 44% recovery and low mood, I went for an early morning swim/bob in the harbor. The cold water will surely be a reset. Nope. I came home and did a 20 minute high intensity workout. That usually gets me on track. It didn’t.

I still felt a heavy cloud and now as you can imagine, I’m ticked. Look body, I have a LOT of things to do today, so let’s get on track asap ok?

I finally sat down with my mint tea and acknowledged the inevitable.

I couldn’t swim away from the stress or do enough pushups to get it out. What is so stressful in my life? I realize I downplay stress because I have a ‘handle on it,’ or ‘don’t have it as bad as others’ and always try and lead with gratitude.

But that doesn’t mean my own set of stressors doesn’t matter.

I started to go through my laundry list, the 44% recovery and my body’s reaction to it subconsciously made sense.


  • Finances and a new mortgage
  • COVID; the health of my family, my friends, the WORLD!
  • Am I living my purpose? (the ole’ daily question).
  • Getting my podcast episodes out on time
  • House renovations & never-ending projects. So much for a holiday weekend.


  • Dismantling racism and systemic oppression
  • Plastic pollution and the health of our oceans
  • Climate change

Oh shit, well when you put it like that yeah, that’s heavy.

My mantra on low days is always simply to ‘push through’ and focus on forward momentum.

I will even say it out loud if I need to. And on this day, I needed too.

Push through MF!

So my challenge to you, if you’re reading this and you can relate to this heavy cloud, is just to pause for a moment and acknowledge it.

Instead of trying to escape it or push it down, write your stressors down on a piece of paper, then rip it up if you want. Say it out loud to your partner or a friend. GET IT OUT.

DM ME if that helps! I’m here to listen!

In my opinion, I believe we don’t acknowledge stress because we feel it equates to us being a failure, or the inability to handle something. We all know that’s not the case.

Life happens. We got this. The juggles, struggles and everything in between.


So cheers to finding a better balance for the upcoming weekend, but remember it’s not about a perfect balance, because there’s no such thing as perfect.

Artwork by Kristina Young
  1. Ohhh, this resonates! I always downplay my stress because I feel I have no reason or right to be stressed, when I’m living what others may think is the perfect life! But it’s amazing what we can hide behind a laugh or a smile! I’m definitely digging out my journal to lay down my stresses and get them out of my head xx

    • Stacie Vanags says:

      Thank you so much for sharing your thoughts here Jacquie, and for taking a moment to read! Gosh, so true how you say we can hide behind a laugh or a smile! I’ve heard that’s called ‘deflecting,’ something I definitely do! HAHA! No pun intended!

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