Overtraining injuries are common in all people who exercise from athletes to people training recreationally. They are caused by putting your body through more than it can handle for example by increasing the intensity of the exercise.
Signs you are overtraining:
- Feeling nauseous after exercise
- Increased resting heart rate
- Feeling fatigued throughout the day
- Abnormal muscle soreness
- Decreased endurance and strength during training
- Poor appetite
- Lack of motivation
- Mood swings during and after the workout session
Tips to prevent this:
- Switch it up – you should only do 2-3 high intensity workouts a week. You can train different body parts on different days, for example a leg day on Monday, arm day on Tuesday.
- Include rest days – days for your body and muscles to recover and re-strengthen after a tough work out is vital. If you don’t include these, you won’t see yourself making further progress as fast as your body will be pushed to its limits, increasing the risk of overtraining injuries. Every 2-3 days a rest day should be added to your workout routine. Making sure you have adequate sleep (6hrs+) every night is also key.
- Try Flow state training – this involves a good balance between challenge and skillset. If the task is too easy, you will easily become bored, however if the task is too difficult you will eventually become demotivated to continue trying. Reaching a flow state serves as good motivation to carry on training as you see progress whilst also enjoying your work out session. You feel you have a sense of control over your workouts and slowly lose the self-consciousness aspect many people feel while training. A good start point to this type of training involves cardiovascular exercises such as running, cycling and swimming as you make progress constantly and it becomes more challenging as time goes on.
- Eat well and have a balanced diet – without adequate nutrients, your body won’t have enough fuel for your next workout and recover from the previous one. Limit sugary meals and eat more protein and healthy fats.
- Stretch well- after exercising, it is very important to take time to stretch out the areas you have just worked out. Choose exercises that include a range of movements to the area of body you were working on and any areas that feel tight.
- Drink lots and lots of water – dehydrated tissues are prone to injury as they struggle to gain nutrients necessary for healing and repair. Dehydrated tissues are less flexible and tend to accumulate waste products. Stay hydrated by drinking water.
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