Everybody has different goals in mind when it comes to going to the gym and we all exercise for different amounts of time.
Five hours a week is classed as healthy, but if you’re going over that time frame are you doing your body any good?
Of course it’s a good thing to push yourself sometimes but not all time because you could end up straining and damaging your body.
Addicted to endorphins
Believe it or not, it is very possible to become addicted to exercising and it is classified under a behavioural addiction. This will cause you to not have adequate rest and is often linked to eating disorders. Of course, moderate exercise is beneficial to health, but if you go over your personal limit the damage done to your body can be very harmful.
It can be classified as an addiction or a compulsion, but either way, there are sure fire ways to know if you are addicted to working out. With an addiction people are dependent on the feeling of euphoria and pleasure that comes with exercising, which makes them not want to stop. Whereas with compulsion some people will feel that they need to workout or their day isn’t complete. Both are just as damaging with symptoms such as:
- An increase in exercise that could become harmful
- A dependence on exercise to achieve a sense of euphoria
- Not participating in physical exercise will cause someone to become dysfunctional
- Withdrawal symptoms taking over such as anxiety, restlessness, depression, guilt, tension, discomfort, loss of appetite, sleeplessness and headaches
- A dependence on exercise that causes them to work through trauma and medical conditions
You will know if you are addicted if you feel any of these symptoms when taking a rest day or a long break due to injury. It can be difficult to deal with but talking to family and friends, or even going to therapy can help if you have body issues or an eating disorder.
Symptoms of overtraining
You feel emotional:
When you start to feel emotionally tired, as well as physically, you know there’s a small problem with your exercise regime. Sometimes the body doesn’t know how to deal with the physical stress so it will manifest it in a way it knows how to, which often involves some crying or general feelings of sadness.
You feel thirsty:
Working out hard causes loss of water through sweat and if you don’t replenish enough in time you’re going to run into trouble. By drinking water your body will heal and get back some of the nutrients it desperately needs.
You skip your rest days:
We all feel pressured to keep at it in the gym and we’re made to feel like we need to be active all the time but that isn’t the case at all. You need to take a break and put your feet up to let your body recover from all the hard work you’ve been doing.
You don’t get enough sleep:
The resting period is extremely important, if you don’t get enough rest your sleep will suffer which will in turn stop muscular gain or fat loss occurring at a natural rate.
You feel cranky:
We all know that when we feel tired we tolerate a lot less from people. So when we overtrain our bodies we risk becoming irritable and short-tempered, all from being tired.
You feel sick:
If you start to feel sick it is because your immune system is suffering from overtraining which means you’re more at risk of getting a cold or something worse. It could even cause bowel and digestive issues as overtraining disrupts the liver’s ability to break down nutrients properly.
You have sore muscles:
It is completely normal to feel sore after a good workout, it means you’ve done a good job. But if you’re still feeling sore 72 hours after make sure to get some rest to recover. Pay attention to if you are starting to feel weak or sore, and if you need to stop then don’t think twice about it.
You have no concentration:
If you get distracted or miscount how many reps you are doing you could overtrain by accident or cause an injury. Stay focused and only do what is needed in a good amount of time. You shouldn’t be exercising for longer than 45 to 75 minutes maximum.
You don’t feel motivated:
It’s okay to miss a day at the gym if you have other plans or you know you need a break. The problem comes when you work so hard and all of a sudden become disinterested. This means that you have overexerted yourself too much and you need a little break to recuperate. It’s your body’s way of saying, “Hold up a minute!”
You aren’t making progress:
When you overtrain and push your body to the limit, it will actually have the opposite effect of what you want. Your muscles tear when you work out, which is why it is important to rest, and if you keep working hard you are just re-tearing them again and again.
If any of these fit you and you count yourself as a fitness fanatic, you should definitely take a day off and unwind. Your body will thank you for it.
Disclaimer: Our reviews and investigations are based on extensive research from the information publicly available to us and consumers at the time of first publishing the post. Information is based on our personal opinion and whilst we endeavour to ensure information is up-to-date, manufacturers do from time to time change their products and future research may disagree with our findings. If you feel any of the information is inaccurate, please contact us and we will review the information provided.