If you are coming into the gym on a regular basis and committing yourself to keeping in shape, especially in these colder months, than hats off to you, as you are doing what is needed to keep your body moving and metabolism firing.
If you are a long time fitness enthusiast or new to exercise, one of the most common drawbacks to gaining effective or desirable results is overtraining. The thing about overtraining is it is not just about the amount of hours that you spend in the gym training but also your work and lifestyle out of the gym.
This article will go over the 5 main issues resulting from overtraining and what to do about it. Some of the most common themes that arise from over-training are listed below but are not limited to:
It is normal to feel increased muscle soreness after exercise, but if it last longer than 72 hours then the muscle tissues may not had adequate time to rest, and/or the nervous system has been over taxed. If the muscle soreness lasts longer than the normal period then it may be time to schedule a rest day and focus on stretching or schedule in a massage or myotherapy treatment. Also a muscle will cool in the way that it is worked so over working a muscle for too long will lead to poor posture and eventually pain.
Many people forget that our main stage of growth or recovery comes from sleep and in particular from 10pm-2am. This is when the body physically repairs itself from the day before. If you notice that you are training a lot and not getting enough sleep then it may be time to take a few days off and focus on eating a clean whole foods diet and practicing good sleep hygiene.
In the modern age now, many people often exercise after work, when they are already fatigued and the body’s natural testosterone production is lowering, so training a this stage is often fraught with danger if already fatigued as the muscles will not be able to perform as effectively.
If you don’t get time to recover properly and/or don’t eat the required diet needed to support your system, as you train and deal with the demands of modern life it can lead to fatigue and eventually sickness. If you spend to much time in the ‘on’ position and not enough enough time in the ‘off’ position, it is pretty clear your body and ultimately your immune system will begin to decline. When you are feeling run down, just take time to slow down and stop. It may be good to have a rest day, and up your intake of Vitamin C.
As the body and mind become more fatigued it becomes harder to maintain the ‘rage’ as they say. This can be due to adrenal type fatigue and lowered hormones. One of the best ways to get out of that habit is to change up your workouts or focus more on restorative style work outs involving stretching and mobility. You could even attend the Flexibility and Mobility class on Thursdays at Mind and Body Gym. Ask at reception about it.
Another drawback that accompanies over-training is doing the same program continuously for years, which essentially leads to the muscles becoming locked into those patterns. Essentially the body adapts to a program after 4-6 weeks and those movements become stored as movement programs. Look to change up your program regularly so the body does not get a chance to adapt. The brain loves ‘novel stimulus’ meaning new experiences in order to keep changing and getting results. If you would like more advice on different exercises we have a team of knowledgable trainers that can help out. Just ask at reception.
We have a brain for one reason and one reason only, and that’s to produce adaptable and complex movements.
Today we have covered the 5 major reasons and outcomes of over-training, but there is much more to it, so in conclusion it is vital to listen to your own body and seek guidance from a professional when unsure if you are pushing the envelope.
Remember training is meant to be fun and a means to bring you towards health and not the other way around.