Sunday, January 16, 2011

Over Training and Rest

Kitty knows how to relax
It is great to push ourselves to the limit when we are working out.  It gives us a real sense of accomplishment to feel our muscles working with the sweat pouring down our faces. 

However, sometimes we over do it.  Many of use feel guilty if we take a day off.  Tired and sore, we still continue to exercise until our bodies fight back.  We get injured.  We are so fatigued that we can't even move.  We get sick.

This is what has happened to me.  

The body needs to rest and recover to get healthier and stronger.  This is what I tell my clients.  I didn't take my own good advice and now I am paying the price.

So why is rest so important?

  • Muscle Recovery - Rest allows muscle tissue time to repair itself and replenish energy stores. If you over train, the body might continue to breakdown muscle instead of rebuilding it.  Do some gentle stretching on your rest days to stay flexible and limber.
  • Better Sleep -  While it is true that regular exercise can help improve the quality of your sleep, too much exercise can have the opposite effect.  Sleep is so important to good health, don't jeopardize it.
  • Avoiding Injury - As I mentioned above, over training can result in injury, fatigue and illness.  It can also trigger depression and decreased performance.  Not so good.
  • Life Balance - You need to ensure that you are making time to focus on family, friends and work.  Too much time spent exercising can take away from time spent with the people you care about or engaging in other activities you love.

Have you ever over trained?  How did you feel?  Do you schedule weekly rest days?

Stay Healthy,


  1. I schedule rest days in the form of easy days - I strongly believe in hard/easy periodization training. That said, returning to exercise after a break (this time from having a baby), I often over estimate how hard my hard & easy days should be. This time instead of getting injured I got Scarlet Fever... Not fun!

  2. I agree. Active rest is a great way to go. It also satisfies a fitness buff's need to do "something" everyday. I think many of us over estimate what we can do...listening to our bodies is so important. I hope you are feeling better and thanks for sharing! :)

  3. Oh yes, about 2 years ago I went through a period of serious overtraining. I really hit the overtraining syndrome to be honest. It was horrible. And it was so much more difficult to overcome than I had thought. Exercise can be such an addiction I think - and sometimes working out makes you feel better (temporarily) so you do it even when you really shouldn't.

  4. Exercise is addictive and you are overcome with guilt if you don't workout so you keep pushing your body beyond its limits. It is tough lesson to learn, that is for sure. Thanks for sharing, Heather!



Related Posts with Thumbnails