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Please Note: I am not a doctor.
Please consult a physician
prior to attempting any of
the example workout routines
showcased in this blog.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

OVERTRAINING

OVERTRAINING:

Yes, it's in all capital letters for a reason. Overtraining is one of those things that even the fittest individuals can fall victim to. According to physiotherapy.curtain.edu, overtraining (staleness) is characterized by premature fatigue, decline in performance, mood changes, emotional instability and decreased motivation. Basically the individual's body is in a chronic state of insufficient recovery time as a result of prolonged or intense exercise activity.

I recently fell victim to overtraining. It is the perfect example for this blog. I had been running low on sleep for several days prior. I decided since I was feeling sluggish, I should go for a run on the treadmill even though I would've much rather taken a nap. I still felt the need to do a little something before I could go home and rest. I attempted my run for 45 minutes and finished it off. I didn't feel too great afterwards so I decided to add another 15 minutes on the elliptical. After that, I still didn't feel the normal rush of endorphins after 60 minutes of cardio. I went home and finished my day. The next day, I woke up and weighed myself. I actually gained 5 pounds. I am not saying the weight gain is directly related, but my diet is consistently healthy and I didn't eat anything out of the ordinary. I also still felt physically, emotionally and mentally drained.

I couldn't help but laugh to myself as I had been talking with renowned Professional/Olympic athlete trainer, Randy Hadley (www.RHFITPRO.com) regarding my feeling and situation. He suggested I skip the workout altogether to go home and rest. Me being stubborn, I chose not to follow his advice and still did that 60 minutes of cardio. Not only did I not listen, I did a workout that I didn't feel 100% for and didn't feel as though I even really was able to accomplish anything. There I was 5 pounds heavier, even more tired and knowing Randy was right. I now realized how important it is to obviously listen and follow such an accomplished professional's advice but also to know when my body needs rest and time to recover.

This is classic for those of us who are regular gym goers. Sometimes we don't feel up to the workout, but we force ourself to go thinking even if I go and I give 65%, at least I did something. THIS IS WONG!! It is actually more productive to go home rest, stretch and a light walk if absolutely necessary prior to forcing yourself to go to the gym when you aren't feeling up to it. Taking the time to rest one day will help you recover better and faster so that the next time you have a workout you are feeling 100% up for anything.


Recognize Overtraining:
- Feeling Fatigued
- Mild Leg/Muscle Soreness
- Headaches
- Increased Susceptibility to Injury
- Increased Resting Heart Rate
- Mood Changes
- Unusual Weight Loss/Gain
- Restlessness/Irregular Sleep Pattern


Prevent Overtraining:
- Know Your Limits
- Get Plenty of Rest
- Know That it IS okay to take time off
--> Even the Olympic athletes recover by taking at least 1 week where they do no athletic activity
- Realize When You Have Exercised Excessively
- Use Variety in Workouts to Avoid Staleness/Plateaus

Know When Your Body Needs a Rest!
Keep Up the Good Work!


1 comment:

  1. I can relate to this post 100%. I think I often push myself to workout and perhaps that is why I've had trouble losing the few lbs I want to lose! It's annoying that by working out more, we can set ourselves back even further. I need to heed your advice and take more breaks.

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