If you’re an athlete or fitness lover, it is safe to assume that you’re fully aware of the immense benefits of training. Like they say, no pain, no gain. But as important as consistent training is, there is a thin line between training hard and overtraining. And unfortunately, many people end up crossing that line in an attempt to gain the best results. Pushing your muscles to the limit and feeling the burn and ache sometimes gives athletes and sportspeople the false belief that they’re yielding the best results, when in fact, they’re doing themselves more harm than good.
Every fitness expert believes that the muscles need a lot of rest period to heal and recover enough for the next training session. And if you fail to pay attention to what your body tells you when you train, you may ignore signs that indicate you’re overworking yourself or overtraining. This article will take a look at the things that can happen when you overtrain.
Believe it or not, excessive training combined with poor nutrition can lead to premature hair loss over a period. Too much exercise puts a lot of stress on the body and muscles. When you fail to rest and support your efforts with good nutrition, you end up piling layers of stress on your body. Over time, this can lead to a condition known as telogen effluvium – a signal that stress has taken a significant toll on your system.
The best way to prevent this condition is by reducing how much stress you put on your body through training. You can do this by giving your body enough recovery periods between training sessions while ensuring that you support your workout efforts with the proper nutrition. If you’re already experiencing hair loss, you can take advantage of treatment options like Finasteride. However, it is always essential to consult with a doctor.
Low Energy Level
Another sign to look out for is a significant drop in energy levels. When you get to a point where you start feeling lethargic or low in motivation, you may have overtrained. Every day becomes a struggle at this point, and even getting out of bed becomes a problem for you.
You will find yourself wanting to sleep more and start making up excuses to remain in bed.
You will also start feeling bored with your training routine at this point and even lack the desire to continue.
It is important to note that tiredness, sluggish feeling, and boredom can happen during normal training. However, when you start experiencing prolonged periods of lethargy and low energy that last for days, that’s a sign that you may have overworked your body. Your best remedy is to give your body enough rest after working out. You might also need to readjust your training routine.
Frequent Muscle Injuries And Illnesses
Regular training and workouts are supposed to put you in the best physical (and even mental) condition. But if you find yourself experiencing more than frequent muscle injuries and illness during or after training, then you may need to take a break. Overtraining puts your immune system under a load of beating without giving it enough time to recover or even support the workload it receives. That puts you at risk of frequent health issues that take too long to go away. Aside from that, you may also be susceptible to experiencing a series of nagging injuries too often.
Again, injuries are always possible during any training session. They could result from poor training technique or wrong body positioning, so you’ll need to be sure those are not the problem. If you don’t have a problem with poor technique, posture or ill health before training, then your nagging injuries could result from overtraining.
Lose Muscle Gain
Muscle soreness is common during any effective workout session. But if you experience soreness for longer than three days or 72 hours, this could be due to overtraining, and you need to schedule a break immediately. If you’re aiming at muscle growth, you need to give your muscles enough time to recover. The muscles use this period of rest or recovering to heal and repair torn muscles, building and growing your muscles in the process. That means you’re more likely to see positive results on your muscles when you rest. If your muscles aren’t recovering, it will have an adverse impact on any hope of muscle gain.
Mood And Emotional Changes
When you put your body under constant stress during training, you may end up impacting your hormone levels. So, if you find yourself experiencing sudden emotional changes and mood swings that you cannot explain, then it’s probably time to take a needed break.
Here are a few things you can look out for regarding emotional changes.
- A lack of concentration or focus
- Poor motivation
- Low-self esteem
- And sometimes, even depression
A combination of all the other signs already mentioned can also affect your mood. For example, dealing with nagging injuries and frequent illness can quickly form a cloud of depression over your mind.
A good workout or training session should help improve your general sleep quality. But if you end up struggling to get any sleep at all, then you may be overdoing your training. Overtraining can easily lead to disrupted sleep patterns, less restful sleep, or general insomnia issues. If you’re struggling to get some good rest after training, then it’s time to take a break. You can take advantage of new sleep tracking apps to monitor your sleep quality and patterns. You can also try signing up for yoga lessons, meditations, sleep therapy, or therapeutic spa treatments to help improve your sleep quality. But none of these will work if you continue overtraining.
Reduced sex drive
It sounds rather logical that you’ll be less interested in sexual activities when you overexert yourself in training, as you’ll probably be too exhausted.
Beyond logic, some research also suggests that overtraining can affect your libido. As already mentioned, overtraining can impact your hormones, creating changes and increasing the stress hormone known as cortisol. All these can lead to a reduced sex drive.