We all know that being active is the foundation of wellness, but are you overdoing it? Failing to listen to your body and give it the recovery it needs is a dangerous game to play. Here are seven telltale signs that you’re training far too hard and you need a break.
1. You have withdrawal symptoms
Make no mistakes, exercise and being active can be addictive. Research suggests that when we overtrain, we may suffer from withdrawal symptoms the moment we stop. If your post-workout recovery includes a loss of hunger, fatigue, coldness, and shaking, that could be a sign that you’re overdoing it. Give your body a chance to rest and recuperate.
2. You’re getting ill more often
Sickness is no laughing matter. Training and staying active should improve your health, not decrease it. One of the side effects of overtraining is an increased level of the cortisol stress hormone in the body. The hormone can lower your immune system, making you more susceptible to viruses and illnesses.
3. You’re not getting enough sleep
Finding it hard to nod off at night? You might want to rethink your training regime. A study published in the Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise Journal found that overtraining lead to both ‘significantly poorer sleep’ and ‘higher stress levels.’ Researchers suggested that keeping daily logs of exercise and wellbeing could help to combat this problem.
4. You’re getting serious sugar cravings
Fantasizing about Pop Tarts and Oreos? There could be a reason that you’ve suddenly become a sugar-loving fiend. When you train and exercise, your body starts to use up its glucose reserves. So, logic tells us, the more you workout, the lower these levels will be.
Of course, your body needs to replenish them. The fastest (but by no means the healthiest) way to get that kind of energy is through eating high-sugar snacks. Remember, good health is about balancing fitness and a stable, nutritious diet. Avoid binging on calorific snacks and replenish your stores by giving your body healthy alternatives.
5. You have aches and pains
Post-gym recovery can be a pain… literally. We’ve all been there. Usually, you should find that these feelings disappear after around 24 hours. However, if you find that these aches and pains are lasting longer than usual, that could be a sign that you’re overdoing it.
Suffering from sore joints that are either red and swollen or just generally tender is not a normal side effect of working out. Don’t kid yourself that it is. Your body is crying out for some recovery time. Give it what it needs the most.
6. Your heart is always racing
Of course, we all know that your heart rate shoots up when you’re training. That’s completely normal and not something you should stress about. However, after you’ve worked out and as you relax, you should find that your body recovers and you have a lower resting heart rate.
A healthy rate is around 60-100 BPM, according to Mayo Clinic. If you find that you are constantly exceeding this limit, it’s a worrying sign. Speak to both your trainer and a medical expert about this and determine what the cause could be.
7. Your moods are all over the place
You’re happily laughing away one minute and crazy angry the next… Does this scenario sound all-too-familiar? Many people overlook the effect that overtraining can have on their moods, but you must not make that mistake. Researchers have found that extreme mood changes are one of the most common symptoms of Overtraining Syndrome.
The study claims that when you overtrain without giving yourself ‘adequate rest’ time, you could end up with this syndrome. That means that the key to avoiding it is making sure that your exercise program allows for some short yet effective recovery periods.
Avoid overtraining at all costs!
So, have you been overtraining? Yes? Well, then it’s time to make a change. As an expert fitness trainer, I ensure that my customers work out within their limits and avoid burning themselves out.
If you’d like to learn more about curating a healthy training routine, get in touch. I can help you reach your wellness goals without putting your health at risk.