How many minutes or hours do you work out in a day? Do you usually stick to your plan or often times go beyond your target?
It is indeed a healthy activity, but exercise can be somehow addictive to some. Maybe it’s because some would want to hit the target immediately, while some get thrilled with the result that they wanted more. But when it comes to hitting the road for a run or spending time in the gym, is there such thing as too much?
Generally, exercises should make you move faster and make you feel stronger every day. You develop endurance as you become more active and build muscles as you reduce fats. However, when the activity exceeds the body’s capacity to recover from strenuous movements, it becomes slow, weak and tired. Pushing yourself too hard to exceed your personal best would most likely result to chronic fatigue and decreased performance.
Check these signs of overtraining and see if you are experiencing them. It is indeed better to slow down as early as now, than be regretful later.
- Soreness. Your muscles hurt and the pain don’t wear off. If it is taking you longer days to completely recover, then it is already a warning sign to tone down.
- Heart irregularities. Same as with the risk of developing heart problems for those with sedentary lifestyle, over-doing it can cause irregularities in the heart, like fluctuating heart rates and blood pressure.
- Injury. When you get injured a lot, that is totally not normal. You may not be performing the activities correctly, or you are simply pushing yourself too hard.
- Changes in appetite. If you feel like consuming a lot at times, then for some days you suddenly feel like you don’t want to eat anything, it is already a signal that you are overexerting your energy.
- Disturbed sleeping patterns. Can’t sleep well? Overtraining can make you feel wide awake at times, and dead tired for some days. This will certainly result to slower recovery from exhaustion and injuries.
Now how can you turn the pain to gain? Here are some tips that will help you avoid the pitfalls of over-exercising:
- Add variety to your routine. Do not focus on one area or muscle group for the entire week. The body needs time to restore itself and fully recover, and you must give that time to avoid fatigue.
- Observe proper nutrition. Eat the right kind of food to properly fuel your body and replenish the loss nutrients. You need to match your diet with your workout routine; you might need to increase carbs for cardio workout, while protein must be leveled-up if you are engaged in strength training.
- Have enough rest. Sleep for at least 8 full hours to allow your body to fully recover and gain the strength for another day of workout. Your tired muscles need some time off too.
You must always remember the reason why you are exercising. It must be to increase your strength and make yourself stronger each day. If your training is taking its toll on your body, consider re-assessing your routine or seek professional help.