Steps

 

Apparently, her initial weight loss motivation had robbed her of her sanity of thought! Four days a week became six days a week and one-hour sessions turned to two-hour sessions. She had shunned her social life and made fitness her only friend. Her body was pushed beyond rest and recovery capacity. Her initial success had become blurred as progress spiraled down to loss of motivation.

Physical and psychological problems unfold one after another as an effect of over training. The bottom line is, you never ever should be over training! Sometimes, less is more. Not only will your muscle growth be inhibited, but your immune system will also be weaker. Learn from your mistakes. Here’s how you can avoid over training!

 

Listen

You may have gotten your training calendar all mapped out, but even the best laid plans undoubtedly suffer from unexpected glitches. When things don’t go as planned, listen to what your body is trying to tell you. Take the day off or take a step back with some low-intensity cardio. Your workout frequency and intensity should match your body’s strength and endurance level. Focus on your form rather than how many reps you can do. Most people, particularly athletes, tend to push themselves more in response to growing fatigue, thinking it’s a sign of strength when, in fact, slowing down is the better and wiser choice. If you practice restraint and pull back today, you will be able to come back stronger the next day. But if you remain stubbornly persistent in training hard despite your body’s warnings, you may experience the downward spiral of over training which may take you weeks to climb back from.

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LearnThe wisest way to treat failures and setbacks is to learn from them. It sounds simple enough and most people do attempt to reflect on what they did wrong so as to avoid making the same mistakes in the future. Sometimes, our strength becomes our weakness. Being committed is good, but it’s always better to be realistic. If you had been over training, that means something about your workout regimen didn’t sit right. Take time to sit back and weigh the pros and cons, what went wrong, and what rectifications could be done. Whether it’s your workout intensity, frequency, recovery time, nutrition, or sleep – you need to identify each problem individually before you can work on the entirety.

 

TalkWhile learning from your previous mistakes is a good start, it is always wise to also get a second opinion (and an expert one at that)! Speak to a personal trainer and get their expert advice on what workout plan suits your fitness level best. They will help you decide on a variety of workouts to incorporate into your weekly routine. Perhaps, a day of high-intensity training like boot-camp followed by average-intensity aerobics, further followed by another day of intense cardio, then calming yoga sessions and meditation, and so on. Besides, variety breaks the monotony and will in fact bring the fun factor into your training. Enjoying your training sessions will also help take the stress out and push you comfortably and reasonably, not forcibly, towards your goal.

 

WhatInclude complex carbs (rice, potatoes, yams, whole grain cereals, fruits and veggies), protein (eggs, meat, fish, cheese, yogurt, nuts, and beans) and healthy fats (olive oil, seeds, nuts, and avocados) in your diet. A small pre-workout meal of carbs and protein will fuel your body for training, while a post-workout calcium-vitamin-rich milkshake can enhance recovery and muscle growth. Talk to your nutritionist and get to know what you can include in your diet according to the training you are into and body requirements.

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Catch

Muscle growth is optimized during sleep, not at the gym! Studies show that when you sleep, a growth hormone is released at its optimum, significantly facilitating growth, strength and tissue repair. Although the amount of sleep varies from person to person depending on type of training, an average of 7 to 9 hours of sleep is required for adequate recovery between workouts.

Change is inevitable and necessary! Incorporate new exercises into your routine, get your social life back on track, experiment healthy home cooking, and remember what motivated you to train in the first place. Most importantly, love your body, give your body the required time to adapt to changes and stay happy! Don’t forget to keep us posted  on how these tips proved helpful in reviving your workouts, and re-stimulating muscle growth!

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