Tired, cranky, and annoyed with the results you aren’t seeing at the gym? You have an amazing handle on nutrition, avoiding crash diets because you know they don’t work. You’ve been going hard at the gym but everything just feelsblah. You hit the weights hard, cardio, and are even incorporating classes for variety. You are giving fitness your all, leaving very little in your life for anything else which in turn makes you even more annoyed that you’ve spent so much time in the gym and are seeing very little results. You are banging your head against the wall in frustration and cursing your stubborn body to catch up with all the hard work you are doing. Stop, take a breath, and remain calm. You are over-training.

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Here are the three signs you are overtraining, how to avoid it, and begin making ground again:

1.     Chronic fatigue: Even after a full night of sleep, roughly two hours after you wake up you begin to feel weak, fatigued, and annoyed. You hit your bed for a nap and can easily sleep for several more hours. You may feel rested after a nap and even good enough to attempt a workout. Avoid the temptation to do so. Working out too much or working out several times a day can seriously damage your fitness. Adequate rest is just as important as the amount of time you spend lifting, running, or training. Your body requires rest periods in order to recover and rebuild the muscles you have worked. No rest, no gains.

2.     Muscle soreness or never feeling fully recovered: DOMS, delayed onset muscle soreness is something most people experience. However, if you have been working out for six months with a proper gym routine and are still feeling DOMS everyday then you might want to re-evaluate your training as you could be over-training. Try going to the gym for two to three days in a row lifting weights then take a day of rest or switch it up with light cardio or a hike. Give those sore muscles a break. Believe it or not this will help you maintain what you are trying to achieve.

3.     Gym performance: A week ago you were shoulder pressing 40 pounds today you can barely lift 20. You now feel frustrated, annoyed, and discouraged. Take a look and what you’ve done for the week. Have you gone to the gym every day without rest? Have you pushed yourself to the point of exhaustion where your muscles ache every day? Take a couple days off from the gym, eat, sleep, and watch how many reps of 40lbs you can push above your head after your rest days.

If you can relate to any to any of these symptoms then let’s chat. I recently experienced this; I was going through the motions, eating healthy, and hitting the gym hard. I probably didn’t take a day off from the gym in over 6 months because I had set goals. I took something called a de-load week, which meant NO lifting for one full week (doesn’t need to be this long). I spent a lot of time on myself, going back to my roots by doing some short and long runs, stretch classes, and RESTING.  My mental focus was stronger and the results I saw in just one week vs. the six months of training my ass off were huge.

We often have that mentality of doing as much as possible as often as possible in order to see results. However, rest, proper nutrition, and giving yourself a break from going heavy on the iron is sometimes all you need to get quicker (yep I said quicker) results. Contact me to find out how to de-load, relieve your stress from the gym, and get the results you need through proper nutrition and fitness.

Remember, train hard, but in moderation.

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