Overtraining is real and can happen to you too. It is not confined to any specific sports, training, or workout. It happens when some athlete does more training than the body can recover from and it reaches a point that performance measures drop. This is a serious condition and you should try to avoid it at all costs.
Table of Contents
- What are the causes of overtraining?
- Training too much in one cycle
- Trying to be touch by not taking breaks
- Frequent intense workout sessions
- Symptoms you should look out for
- How to get rid of it?
As you are trying to improve and want to be better, and overtraining happens, it is not a good sign, as it can be a major hindrance in the way of improvement. Researchers have found some ways of measuring whether a runner over-trained or not such as catecholamine excretion and neuromuscular patterns that help them determine whether or not you were overtraining.
However, there is no way of measuring this as you are training or working out. It is just that, the next time your running shorts or joggers and T-shirt is sweating heavily, and you feel like pushing yourself off the boundary, stop right there and give the rest it needs. The fact that there are few concrete ways to find either you are overtraining or not makes this thing dangerous. This is exactly why you should always keep it in mind open. You don’t have to worry because today we will address this issue. Tell you about it what are its symptoms and how can you get rid of this complicated situation. Yes, it is possible to identify what training could be harmful by looking out for the signs it gives.
What are the causes of overtraining?
It happens when you are not giving the body proper rest periods and working out repeatedly. Yet there are some workouts when you feel like its overtraining, but the actual cause is body didn’t get the required recovery time. Because everyone is different and their body needs a specific time to recover the recovery periods differ. However, scientists have figured out some situations of training or working out, which are listed as follows.
Training too much in one cycle
Training too much in one go, trying to break your personal record is one of the common causes encounters for overtraining. However, overtraining is family difficult for beginners and athletes who are improving. This is because they are yet improving and have to reach the boundary limit of their body before pushing themselves over it to over train. But still, it is important that we try to improve one step at a time.
Just like jumping in the water without knowing properly how to swim can cause you to drown, skipping steps, or aiming for the final step without taking the first will cause overtraining. So, what can you do about it? Train and workout at your current level, i.e. don’t try to reach new records every other day. This is the safest way through which you can not only improve but also evade overtraining.
Trying to be touch by not taking breaks
We get it you are the most badass person in your gym or on the track but the body needs rest no matter what. I have seen mad workout enthusiasts go from one exercise drill to the next, from that to the next one and so on without any rest or break period in between. People going from one hard exercise to another to achieve their goals posing the body to new limits.
But while doing these tricks they forget to let the body rest and entirely recover. As it could not absorb and recover from the training you just did the weakness is carried on and you are only adding to it in the next training cycle. This is not overtraining just yet. This routine increases the chances of overtraining. So, if you continue to do so you will over train. Take sufficient amount of rest period after a long or tough workout, here are some post-workout recovery tips. Feeling like your potential is going to waste or this is the time you could improve happens to most of us but just focus on recovering for now.
Frequent intense workout sessions
Performing too many intense workouts sessions in one go. To explain this in simple words, suppose you are a runner and do one too many VO2max sessions in one drill. While one VO2max might be helpful for performance improvement but too many will certainly cause overtraining. You might not feel it at the very moment though! According to a research
People who performed about 2 months of regular intense workouts, their pH levels rise, while in reality, these workouts should actually bring it down. For this, you can talk to your trainer or just remember not to cross certain limits. Don’t push too much and obviously no repeated VO2max. HIIT workouts are just fine because they are short timed ranging from anywhere between 10 to 40 minutes. Focus on building your stamina and strengthen the core.
Symptoms you should look out for
It is actually very difficult to precisely know whether or not you are overtraining while you are on it. Measuring it is possible of course but you would have to perform some experiments with fancy equipment. Worry not! Because your body is a great machine that gives you signals if you are overtraining. However, these signals are subtle so you should keep your senses in check.
Change in heartbeat
If you are overtraining your heart rate will be higher than normal after training during rest periods and even sleeping. To know that you can check it before going to sleep or right after waking up. Keep track of your heart rate, either keep a notebook for it or keep a record in your phone. If you have increased heart rate in the mornings over a period of time, the cause could be overtraining. However, stress, dehydration, and higher than normal caffeine intake are few from an extended list that can affect heart rate. Small fluctuations are nothing to be worried about, it is just normal.
One of the most notable overtraining symptoms are changes in mood. When you aren’t improving your lap time, it can be really frustrating. So, first of all, have a look at some techniques to improve your run. And secondly, often frustration and anger are not because of only getting the lap time improved, overtraining can also be a cause. Overtraining decreases hormone manufacturing that influences our nervous system and as a result, you stress out more and become moody. Look out for these signs and take precautionary measures.
Impaired and wear the immune system will obviously make you more vulnerable to diseases like colds, the flu, and seasonal viruses. But what is the cause? Among the list of reasons overtraining is one real one. Do you get sick usually, or every time when the season changes, are you becoming allergic or more and more things, do you become the prey of the same virus over and over? This could be an overtraining sign.
Disturbance sleeping or change in patterns
Like the change in sleep patterns disturbs your body, disturbance in the body i.e. overtraining disturbs your sleep. Take your time to grasp this! In short, overtraining affects body rhythms, and having problems sleeping is a symptom of overtraining. It includes waking up too early than normal, not getting sound sleep, or trouble sleeping at the right times.
But this could also be affected because of your change in daylight or because of stress or anxiety. Change in the timing of sunrises and sets is also a factor.
We don’t recommend you taking just one symptom very seriously, however, its multiple symptoms appear then you should definitely take some rest and back off a little. Don’t just adjust everything yourself, talk to your coach, trainer, and doctor, and let them decide what is best and how to deal with it.
How to get rid of it?
Recovering yourself from it is relatively easy and it is not much you have to do.
Rest, but for how long.
Depending on the coaches amount of time suggested varies, this also depends on person to person and how severe the condition is. The normal rest period is about 3 to 4 weeks, there you go enjoy the break from working out and training. If the symptoms are severe you might even need a month or two of complete rest so that the body can recover completely.
Speed up the recovery process
Yes, there is a way to speed up the recovery process. Just maintaining a healthy diet, eat a healthy and nutritious diet, and don’t just overeat. Get relaxed, stretch your body, get massages, do yoga, and sleep well. Protection is always better than medication so if you would just listen to the body and go easy on it you could prevent overtraining from happening in the first place and the good thing is you won’t have any setbacks.