Traveler was fully down.
This is a place where I think you could find some relief. On flat water or long swells, and when the wind is steady-hard, sheeting taut and traveler set outboard is a great strategy. But in messy chop, most boats do better with increased twist. Easy way to get that is to loosen the sheeting just a little and bring your traveler car up
to the centerline.
That has two benefits: you are dumping excess wind up high, while the lower part of the main is still sheeted in to center and driving the boat; and you have room to lower the traveler during gusts, keeping the boat on its feet & not stalling the sail. When chop on the nose and gusty winds slow our boat down, that's when the keel quits lifting & we just start snowplowing sideways. If we open the leeches, foot off another 5 degrees, and play the puffs, we can punch thru the crud and generally get where we are going.
BTW, the worst conditions for trimming we've found are after the big blow has started to taper, but the waves are still bouncing us around. We sometimes have to go back to full jib before we really want to, or the darned boat just won't go
. Lots of twist and actively steering into the waves help, but honestly we haven't found a good answer for when the chop is bigger than the breeze.