Heart Rate and Breathing
The most common symptoms of anxious athletes are increased heart rate and respiration. Understanding the relationship between heart rate, breathing, and anxiety is a crucial step to reeling in your anxiety.
Let’s simplify this process. Heart rate is the number of times your heart beats per minute. An adult’s average resting heart rate is generally between 60 and 100 beats per minute. However, well-trained athletes have lower resting heart rates.
When you perform strenuous exercise, your heart rate increases. For example, if you are running a 10K, your heart rate increases, and if you are sprinting the last 100 meters, your heart rate will increase further.
Anxiety also increases your heart rate. If you are stressed before an event, your heart rises to the detriment of your performance.
Measuring your heart rate by taking your pulse helps you monitor how you respond to a situation. Therefore, heart rate can become an early warning sign of anxiety buildup. By applying an anxiety management strategy, you can use heart rate as feedback on the strategy’s effectiveness.
Now, let’s look at some practical strategies to manage competitive anxiety