The sweat pelting down your face, the heavy breathing, your head feeling fuzzy, feelings we’re all so familiar with in our weekly exercise routines. Exercise does wonders for us, it helps control our weight, combat health conditions, improves our mood and energy, the list goes on and on.
But the more we start exercising, the more we start to think we can’t do without it — and we tend to push ourselves workout after workout. Where do we draw the line? How much exercise is too much exercise? In this blog post, we’ll be running through some indicators on when it might be time to pull back a little, or to give your body a much needed break.
Daily movement and exercise does wonders for the body but it is possible to overdo it. This can in turn hinder our progress towards our fitness goals. Termed as overreaching, athletes typically experience a constant state of fatigue and lethargy. This can even translate mentally to feelings of demotivation and resistance towards training. Not to fret, it is a temporary condition and when the athlete recognises this and allows the body to regenerate, training performance would be optimised again.
Here are 5 potential telltale signs that it be might be time to listen to your body and give yourself that well deserved break:
Increased at-rest heart rate: If you’re laying in bed or watching a movie and you feel your heart racing and pounding, that might just be an indicator to rethink your workout regime
Poor-quality sleep: Conventionally, the more you exercise, the easier it is to fall asleep. But the opposite is true in your case, the sleep quality is just terrible.
Nagging injury: You start getting injured in the same spots over and over again, tweaking a muscle, feeling a strain of sorts. When we start overtraining, it means we expose ourselves to working out with more broken down and weakened muscles
Slow recovery: What used to just be one or two days of muscle soreness is now five to seven days of discomfort. In this case, it might be time to think about how to best slot in your rest day
Weight gain: In a state of overtraining, the body enters a state of chronic stress. This affects the body’s cortisol levels (stress hormone) which can potentially affect our metabolism resulting in gaining weight.
Getting in ample amounts of exercise in your week is important; and likewise pushing yourselves extra hard to chase specific goals you have in mind is okay as well. More importantly, make sure to always listen to your body, to give yourself enough time to rest and recover, and to never forget to give yourself a pat on the shoulder for the work that you’ve done.
Note: Always consult your physician before beginning any exercise program. This general information is not intended to diagnose any medical condition or to replace your healthcare professional. Consult with your healthcare professional to design an appropriate diagnosis.