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Fitness Tip: Signs of overtraining

Posted May 05 2010 8:34am
This is a guest post from Vancouver Personal Trainer Virgil Isaacs from Kalev: Personal Training

Overtraining is a physical, behavioral and emotional condition that occurs when the volume and intensity of an individual’s exercise exceeds their recovery capacity. They cease making progress, and can even begin to lose strength and fitness. Overtraining is a common problem in weight training, but it can also be experienced by runners and other athletes.

A common misatake among many. According to some “experts” overtraining is a mistake amongst all. Others will tell you its merely imposible to overtrain. Clearly the line sits somewhere between the two extremities, and as with every matter concerning the human body, crossing that line is different for every individual. Here are some indicators
Energy Levels- One of the most common and embraced benefits of working out is increased energy! Sure, maybe not RIGHT after your workout are you gonna feel at your greatest, but during your regular moments throughout the day you should feel more “alive”! When you wake up in the morning, arrive at work, cook dinner…these are some of the moments during which you may, or should, be feeling like you have an extra hop in your step. Be careful, though, not to mistake low energy levels as a result of overtraining when in actual fact you could be just plain ol’ lazy! As you advance in your fitness, you will discover your body and be able to distinguish between the two.

Strength Gains- Pretty simple…. If you’re training for strength, you ought to be getting stronger. If you’re not getting stronger, there’s something you’re not doing right. Overtraining could be that “something”. Ensure your muscles have enough recovery time both inside and outside of the gym.

Bodyweight- You can look at this from two angles. If you’re training to build mass, and….you’re not building mass!, you could be overtraining. Take your time using progressive overload, but don’t OVERload. You’ll tire your muscles out to fast, and they’ll need much more time to recover and progress. If you’re training to lose weight, and….you’re not losing weight!, you could be overtraining.

Again, take your time. You’re body needs to be tricked into losing weight. You’re body tends to “fight” whatever change you’re trying to give it. If you train to hard, or diet to hard, you’re body will say “f@ck off!” and try to hold on to whatever it is you’re trying to deprive it from.

Speak to your personal trainer to find out if you’re on the right track to your fitness goals, and look for the proper signals that indicate you are training at optimum intensities.

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