Many of us take advantage of the new year as a time to institute a healthy exercise routine, but while exercise is good for us, it is possible to overdo it. Overtraining doesn’t give your body enough time to rest and recover and can lead to injuries, burnout, and can actually inhibit your progress. Here are five signs you’re overtraining and need to give your body more time to rest.
- Lack of improved performance. If you’re no longer seeing improved strength and endurance from your workouts, it’s a sign it may be time to take a break. Decreased strength, endurance, or difficulty doing activities you normally would power through are all signs it’s time to take a day off.
- Pains. Soreness is to be expected with more intense workout routines, but aches, pains, and fatigue are indicators of overexertion. Scale back your workouts to give your body time to rest and come back even stronger.
- Mood swings. Feeling more irritable or anxious after workouts? Exercise can trigger cortisol and too much exercise causes this stress hormone to affect your mood. Take a day off to restore this balance and make time for other types of self-care.
- High blood pressure and resting heart rate. A moderate exercise eventually lowers your blood pressure and resting heart rate, but too much can actually raise these numbers. Pay attention to these rates and make note of elevated discrepancies.
- Change in energy and sleep. As with blood pressure, regular exercise boosts energy levels and promotes better sleep, but too much can be disruptive. If you’re feeling exhausted and restless, try taking a few days off to reset and rest.
When we take up a new exercise routine, it can be tempting to give it our all and see strong progress in a short amount of time. Unfortunately, this can quickly lead to burnout and injuries which will set you back even further in your health goals. Approach exercise with a realistic and steady plan and stick to it for sustained results.