When it comes to working out and especially lifting, it’s possible to get too much of a good thing. The phenomenon of overtraining is cumulative. It’s not only what we do in the gym, but outside of the gym, too.
You feel great after your morning workout, so why not do another one at the end of the day? You love the results you’re getting for your program, so why not increase your weight and duration? It seems like a good idea, but overtraining can work against you—and there go your hard-earned results.
Instead of overtraining, listen to your body. Look for these signs that you’re overtraining:
1. Poor Performance
Here’s your first hint that you’re overtraining: You’re not performing well. If you have two or three bad workouts in a row, you may be pushing your body too hard. Don’t forget to allow for recovery time. When you train in this weakened state, you are risking injury.
2. Aches and Pains for Days
A certain amount of soreness is normal—it’s good, since it means you’re building muscle. But if your muscles are sore for more than three days, your body is trying to tell you something: Rest and heal.
3. Frequent Illness
If you find you’re less resistant to getting colds and other common illnesses, it could be a sign you’re overtraining. Slow down and let your immune system recover.
4. Fatigue and Poor Sleep
If you feel exhausted and coffee isn’t cutting it, it may be you’re overtraining. You’ll feel sleepy and uncoordinated.
It’s counterintuitive, but overtraining can cause sleep disturbances. Even though you’re tired, exercise stimulates your system and makes it hard to fall asleep. Don’t miss out on the crucial rest you need.
5. High Resting Heart Rate
From the time you begin training, you’ve been monitoring your resting heart rate. Newbies elevate their heart rate due to improved fitness. But once you’re stabilized your resting heart rate should remain the same even if you increase your load. If you’ve added 5 or more beats per minute, incorporate rest into your routine.
6. Hormones Tell a Tale
Overtraining can wreak havoc on your hormone levels. Too much exercising can cause low testosterone and high cortisol (stress hormone) levels and fatigue your adrenal glands. Symptoms include low energy, low libido, irritability, weight gain, depression, difficulty sleeping, and a decrease in strength. If you have these symptoms, ask your doctor to check your hormone levels.
Recovery is just as important as your training. Pay attention to warning signs from your body. Off days don’t always have to mean complete rest. Try doing something low impact and less intense, get a massage, attend a yoga class, go for a walk around a lake or go on a leisurely hike.
King Chiropractic Can Help
If you’ve been overtraining and need some help recuperating, call King Chiropractic today at (910) 777-7228. We have plenty of options to relieve pain and reduce soft tissue inflammation. We help you heal faster, improve your coordination and stability, and increase your range of motion.