5 Steps to Get Out of Debt

Everyone at some point in their life has struggled with debt. Maybe you’re sitting there reading this with no credit cards, no student loans, and your house is paid off. Good for you! I still guarantee you aren’t fully debt free. What we are talking about today is the number one cause of debt in people’s bank accounts. The biggest, and only cause of living day by day “paycheck” to “paycheck”.

No, the RiverPlex is not offering financial advising services. That could be ten separate blogs for another day. Stop wasting your money on things you don’t need and invest in yourself! Now on to the REAL debt we all struggle with!

Adaptation Reserve:

Think of your body, like a “bank account”. This account holds all the resources your body has to adapt and perform at a high level. Every decision you make both in life, and in training impacts the size of that bank account! You need to view your training and life goals as “goods” you have to buy with “money” from your “bank account”.

  • If you want to “invest” into a solid day at work, you need money in the bank to do so!
  • If you want to “invest” in a quality training session you need money in the bank for that too!
    • Rest, recovery, quality nutrition (fuel), sleep, hydration, etc.

Stress and Adaptation:

We’re going to take a little journey into the deep nerdy science world here for  a while. Put on your thinking caps, grab your favorite highlighter and bear with me here. If I lose you, I promise I’m coming back to you in the end! The biggest DEBT we can get into, is with stress. It’s important to remember that there is both GOOD stress (workouts, studying, working) and BAD stress (work drama, deadlines, busy schedules, injury, etc.).

S.A.I.D Theory – Specific adaptations to impose demand

Step 1 – Your body encounters a stressor

  • Getting caught behind a train, work stress, home stress, etc.
  • Training and Exercise are ALSO a stress!

Step 2 – Your body manages that stressor using “money” from the bank account

  • Physical and mental fatigue, temporary decrease in performance, feelings of lethargy or demotivation, etc.
  • Muscles breakdown from exercise, so it uses nutrients to help build them up strong

Step 3 – You adapt to the stressor in order to limit the amount of stress it can place on your system in the future

  • You memorize and retain information, find coping mechanisms, etc.
  • Your muscles are now stronger, so that amount of exercise won’t break them down as easily next time

To keep it simple, your body is a self-preserving machine set on surviving. If you lift a heavy weight and break down your muscle, your muscle tells your brain “hey this sucks I’m so stressed!” your brain then does some cool physiological stuff to make your muscle stronger so it isn’t as stressed the next time.

KEY POINT: Your body responds to ALL stress, the exact same way, using the same “money” from the bank account!

Situation A:

You don’t have “time” to eat healthy and you’re binge watching Netflix until 2am…. And then you decide to come in and workout.

You – “Hey brain/body, lets put some stress on these muscles/heart/lungs so we can be in shape! Lets make an investment in my health today”

 Brain – “Sorry ma’am, your current account balance reflects a bag of doritos and 3 Red Bulls. If you attempt this investment your account will unfortunately bounce below zero”


Situation B:

Work is kicking your butt, your social life isn’t great, and your kids are turning your house into a war zone. You get the kids to bed on time so you can meal prep for tomorrow and have a long bath to turn your brain off a bit and focus on you. You’re busy in the morning but you grab some fruit and a granola bar so you have some fuel.

You – “Hey brain/body, lets put some stress on these muscles/heart/lungs so we can be in shape! Lets make an investment in my health today”

Brain – “Awesome. We’re feeling pretty good today and have some quality nutrients we can give towards this investment. Your checking account may vary day by day but you’ve been great about adding into your savings long term. If we invest this money in the workout and you continue to put money in savings it could actually double your initial investment since its towards something positive!”

Make an Investment:

Direct Deposits

  • Nutrition, sleep, hydration, stress management techniques, mindfulness, recovery workouts, etc.

Increase the overall SIZE of the bank account

  • Improve your overall fitness level, add strength training, improve movement quality
  • Practice stress management/mindfulness techniques so you can better cope with bad stress in the future

Control withdrawals and deposits

  • If you wouldn’t let Susie from the cubicle over control your debit card, why would you let her effect your everyday mental stress?!? (debt)
  • Balance stress and rest
  • Plan ahead to make sure the account is full before training, competition, work, etc.!