Are you exercising too much?

2013Mar05_ExerciseGeneral_AIf you lack motivation to keep fit and work out then you might find it difficult to get to grips with the idea that other people have the opposite problem and exercise too much. Of course, it’s great to be eager and involved in fitness but as with all things, a bit of balance is a good idea.

So, is your exercise regime running your life? Are you at risk of burnout because you’re punishing your body to the limit rather than putting it through its paces? Look at Part 1 of the danger signs below to see if overexercise alarm bells should be ringing!

Habits form easily and this can mean that what starts out as a positive, healthy way of doing things can sometimes be at risk of going to the opposite extreme. Unless you’re training for the next Olympics and are in the world of elite athletes, an hour or so of exercise most days of the week is probably plenty enough. The recommended amounts for most average adults is around two and a half hours of moderate exercise a week.

The problem with many problems is recognising them. If you know you’re working out lots but there’s a feeling that you’re not getting to where you want to be or you’re not feeling at your best then you might have to either change your training style or even cut down. Doing less of the right exercise is better than going flat out in the wrong direction. Even in the right direction, overdoing it creates a negative impact.

  • Exhausted – Do you find that you’re often tired before you start to exercise, and that weak feeling continues as you work out? You can’t beat fatigue and if you’re pushing too hard to boost your energy levels then you might be running your battery completely flat.
  • Mind games – Every person is capable of telling themselves something that isn’t necessarily based on material facts. Take a look at the reality of your exercise regime. Be honest and even write down the amount of time spent working out. How does this match with what your mind is telling you? If it doesn’t add up then something is amiss.
  • No recovery – You don’t need to have injured yourself to benefit from recovery time. If you have a challenging workout or even a short burst of say interval training, you need to allow your body to recuperate, whether that’s for a few minutes or a couple of days. This is recommended by fitness professionals and has nothing to do with slacking, but quite the opposite.
  • Aches and pains – If you don’t exercise lack of flexibility can lead to stiff and painful joints and contracted muscles. However, overdoing it leads to overuse and this causes wear and tear. Overdoing it in the short-term leads to a too much too soon strain on the body too.
  • No life – Are you dipping out of social occasions and cancelling commitments so you can exercise? There’s nothing wrong with making your fitness goals a priority or given then due consideration and a fixed focus but there should be ample room for other activities and interests too.

Find out more about how important the right exercise plan can be in Part 2! If you’ve got into a fitness mode that’s working against you then expert advice can help you reset and improve what you do and how much you do it.

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