How do you know when you’ve gone too far when exercising? Our bodies will tell us when that new fitness routine we’re obsessed with has taken its toll. It’s normal to have some aches and pains after a workout, but if you should suffer from long periods of muscle soreness following a vigorous exercise regimen, it might be the first sign that you’ve overdone it.
A day or two with slight discomfort isn’t a big deal. If after a week you’re still feeling the effects, that could be a sign that you’ve gone too far. Couple that with sleep changes and feeling sluggish and unenergized, you could have the perfect cocktail of overtraining.
The last thing anyone who works out wants or needs is to be sidelined by an injury. It breaks momentum. While consistent training is important, overdoing it can lead to significant injuries. The key is to be cognizant of cues that you may have gone too far.
Here are some signs to watch out for:
1. Reduced Health or Well-Being: What you eat and how you feel play a significant role in preventing illnesses and injuries. If you’re overworked or are working out too much, you run the risk of falling prey to an illness or injury. Pay attention to what you put in your body and try as best as you can to stick to a healthy fitness routine.
2. Sore muscles that last for extended periods of time: If you wake up and find yourself in pain from yesterday’s workout, you might have an issue. It is highly unusual to be in significant pain post workout. Exercising more than recommended won’t help you reach your goals faster. In fact, it may slow you down.
3. Feeling sluggish: If you’re feeling sluggish, it could be due to a number of factors, including poor sleep habits and stress from work or home. Failing to give your body the rest it needs between workouts only adds to the feeling of sluggishness. A good exercise program and routine will leave you feeling energized.
4. Lack of motivation: If you don’t get out of your funk and move, your mind and body will pay the price. The problem presents itself when you jump in without a plan.
5. Feeling agitated for no apparent reason: Exercising has been proven to be a mood booster, but over-exercising is counterintuitive. It doesn’t make us feel more motivated. It leaves us in pain and feeling overwhelmed. Don’t let that happen. Stick to an achievable goal and routine and reap the benefits in due time.
6. You’ll see an increase in injuries if you overwork your body, so don’t try to cram a month’s worth of exercises into an evening. All you’ll do is wear yourself out mentally and physically. Your body needs time to get used to a routine. It needs ample breaks between workouts. You also need to be properly nourished and hydrated and to get enough sleep. All of these will help with a speedy recovery after an intense workout.
By James Yamure